The first trailer for Will Smith’s new film, King Richard, has landed and people are already talking about it as a potential Oscar contender. The Fresh Prince star will be playing Richard Williams, the father and coach of tennis players Venus and Serena Williams, who’s credited with helping his daughters become the sporting legends they are.
In the teaser, Smith can be seen putting a young Venus and Serena through their paces and putting a social worker, who clearly disapproves of his methods, in her place. “I don’t mind you saying we’re hard on these kids, because we are. That’s our job. Keep them off these streets,” he tells the social worker. “You wanna check on the kids? Let’s check on the kids. We got a future doctor, lawyers, plus a couple [of] tennis stars in this house.”
Directed by Reinaldo Marcus Green and written by Zach Baylin, King Richard stars Saniyya Sidney as Venus Williams and Demi Singleton as Serena Williams. Rounding out the family is Fences and American Horror Story star Aunjanue Ellis who’ll be playing Saniyya Sidney the mother and coach of Venus and Serena Williams.
According to Warner Bros: “King Richard follows the journey of Richard Williams, an undeterred father with a relentless drive and unapologetic vision to change the game” who is instrumental in raising two of the most extraordinarily gifted athletes of all time, who will end up changing the sport of tennis forever.”
The inspirational tone of the King Richard trailer has got people convinced the film considers itself an awards contender. “Based solely off of a 150-second trailer, released 7 months before the ceremony, I’m prepared to give Will Smith his first Oscar right now,” wrote Entertainment Weekly writer, Derek Lawrence. Film fan Ricky Valero meanwhile tweeted “Will Smith is coming for that Oscar.”
King Richard is set for release on 18 November 2021. While you wait why not check out our guide on the best movies of all time, there are a few awards contenders in there.