“From Sidney & Demi, we became Junior & Mica”: Saniyya Sidney and Demi Singleton reflects on portraying Venus and Serena Williams in ‘King Richard’

Saniyya Sidney, the actress who portrayed Venus Williams in 'king Richard' talked about her chemistry with the other cast members and how she prepared for the role.

Venus, Saniyya, Demi, Serena
Venus, Saniyya, Demi, Serena

Serena and Venus Williams have served as an inspiration to millions across the globe and in order to tell the unknown struggles and aspects of their journey, ‘King Richard’ was curated. The movie has already gained a lot of love from audiences and critics and people are in awe of the actors who have portrayed the journey of the sisters with perfection.

In an interaction with Hollywood Reporter, Saniyya Sidney and Demi Singleton, the two stars who essayed the roles of Venus and Serena Williams, respectively, talked about how they prepared to get everything absolutely right on the screen and how important it was for the two actors to get the Serena-Venus chemistry absolutely spot-on.

“Will Smith became our dad”: Saniyya Sidney

Will Smith and Saniyya Sidney
Will Smith and Saniyya Sidney

Talking about how she developed great chemistry with Demi, Sidney claimed, “We’d go to The Grove every weekend. It was really important not only to us but our director, Mr. Rei [Reinaldo Marcus Green], that our chemistry was real and that our sisterhood was shown onscreen.”

Sidney stated that even when filming was halted due to Covid-19, she and Demi constantly stayed in touch. She also reflected on how difficult it was for her to learn tennis. “Learning to play in the amount of time we had was not easy, especially playing two of the greatest athletes of all time. That made it a bit more difficult. I feel like if we were just learning to play like Saniyya and Demi, rather than Venus and Serena, it would’ve been a bit easier,” she claimed.

She also talked about how Will Smith made things extremely easy for her and Demi. “Mr. Will stayed in character, but at the same time, it made our stay in character. He would never call us Saniyya and Demi. It was very much Venus and Serena, or Junior and Mika, their nicknames. He became our dad,” she said.

‘King Richard’ is already creating Oscar Buzz and rightly so. The actors, the director, and everyone involved has delivered incredibly. When you are portraying the life stories of greats like Serena and Venus, it becomes increasingly important to deal with all the aspects of their lives very carefully and that’s exactly what we have seen in the movie.

Also read: ‘I’ll never lose to that little b***h again’: When Sharapova claimed that Serena Williams cried after losing from a skinny kid