The actor talked about portraying Richard Williams in an Instagram post after the trailer for the film was released on Wednesday.
“One of the greatest honors as an actor is to be able to celebrate someone’s legacy while they’re still here creating it,” he wrote in the caption for the post.
The film, directed by Reinaldo Marcus Green and written by Zach Baylin, shows the journey of “an undeterred father instrumental in raising two of the most extraordinarily gifted athletes of all time,” a description for the film reads, in part.
Smith pointed out that he had had the honor of portraying other influential people such as legendary boxer Muhammad Ali for the 2001 film “Ali” and entrepreneur Chris Gardner, who inspired the 2006 movie “The Pursuit of Happyness.”
The “Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” actor earned a Best Actor nomination for both of those roles. “Ali” hit theaters 15 years before the boxing legend died. Smith noted that portraying iconic figures in films while they’re alive to see it is a “fulfilling and expansive experience beyond compare.”
Smith helped produce “King Richard” via his production company Westbrook. Venus Williams, Serena Williams and their sister Isha Price are among the executive producers of the film.
The movie is set to hit U.S. theaters on Nov. 19 and will stream on HBO Max via its ad-free plan for 31 days following its theatrical release.
Smith described “King Richard” as the “origin story for some REAL DEAL superheroes!!” he wrote on Instagram.