Weeks after Will Smith’s overshadowed Oscar win for his starring role in King Richard, Serena Williams has shared her plans for a sequel — and this time, it would tell her story rather than that of her dad.
King Richard focuses on the story of her father, and how he put Serena, 40, and her sister Venus, 41, on the path to tennis greatness — but 23-time Grand Slam winner Serena thinks future films could pick off where this one left off.
There would certainly be plenty of material.
‘Venus goes in her direction, and I go in my direction. It’s two completely different stories,’ Serena told Insider, adding that there would be a lot drama in her screenplay.
‘I had a rough journey,’ she said. ‘I didn’t do well and then I did. It’s a lot of drama. It’s a telenovela.’
‘I had a rough journey,’ Serena Williams said of her life in a new interview. ‘I didn’t do well and then I did. It’s a lot of drama. It’s a telenovela’
She says she thinks the film King Richard, about her father, would make a great starting off point for future films
Serena made her professional debut at age 14 — but after she was denied entry to a tournament due to age restrictions, she filled a lawsuit against the WTA.
In the first tournament she actually played in, she lost in the first round — and went on to lose in the qualifying rounds of three tournaments in 1997.
But she continued to improve, and her first Grand Slam tournament was the 1998 Australian Open.
In 1999, she made her top-10 debut, at number nine, and became the second African American woman ever to win a Grand Slam singles tournament.
Though she had several injuries throughout the years, she went on to win 23 Grand Slam titles — the second-most of any female tennis player, after Margaret Court with 24.
‘Venus goes in her direction, and I go in my direction. It’s two completely different stories,’ Serena said
Venus and Serena are pictured at the 27th Annual Critics Choice Awards on March 13
As her professional success remained steady for decades — and she branched out to other avenues, like fashion and investing — Serena has had some personal drama that may also make for riveting movie scenes: There was her marriage to Reddit’s Alexis Ohanian, her dramatic and nearly deadly childbirth, and the awkward on-court mess with Naomi Osaka in 2018.
Speaking to Insider, she said that how her life is currently is just perfect.
‘This chapter makes me happy because for so many years I’ve played, and I’ve loved doing it, but now I’m playing just for me,’ she said. ‘I compete when and where I want to go, but I don’t have to go. So I’m enjoying it in a different way.’
There’s also motherhood to her four-year-old daughter, Alexis Olympia — though she admits that parts of that can be difficult.
‘Mom guilt is real. I always feel so guilty when I’m doing something on my own,’ she said.
She said the current chapter of her life makes her ‘happy’ because now she’s ‘playing just for me,’ adding: I compete when and where I want to go’
The 23-time Grand Slam winner also discussed ‘mom guilt’ with four-year-old daughter Alexis Olympia and how she no longer cares what people think
Serena said that other people’s opinions ‘used to affect me like 10 percent,’ but ‘now I’m at zero’
‘I don’t know if I’m a good mom, and I don’t know if my method works, but I’m very hands-on with my daughter, and it was the same with our parents. So I’ve set really good boundaries, but then after work, I’m going right to my daughter. And that’s amazing and good, but now it’s like, “Okay, what happens to Serena?”‘
In fact, she admitted, she’s ‘really bad at self-care’ — and even with all of her millions, she hasn’t had a pedicure in two years.
One aspect of self-care that she is quite good at, though, is not minding what other people say.
Serena said that other people’s opinions ‘used to affect me like 10 percent,’ but ‘now I’m at zero.’
‘Growing up in the public eye, you really are affected by what people say. But there was a point where I said, “I don’t care what people think,”‘ she explained.
‘God made us able to make our own decisions, and if people don’t want to like me or what I do, that’s okay. Get in line — there’s going to be a long waiting list. ‘