“King Richard” director Reinaldo Marcus Green and three of the producers of the Will Smith-starring film about the childhood rise of tennis stars Venus and Serena Williams will accept the Los Angeles Press Club’s seventh annual Veritas Award at a virtual ceremony in February. The award recognizes the “best film based on or inspired by real events and people.” Films are judged “on fidelity of subject matter and artistic excellence,” according to the Press Club.
The film “takes viewers behind the headlines to provide insight on the persistence, discipline, confidence and competitive spirit instilled in them by their parents that helped Venus and Serena Williams forge their groundbreaking careers,” LA Press Club President Lisa Richwine said in a statement.
The film traces the upbringing of the future tennis superstars, beginning with their rigorous training on disheveled tennis courts in Compton to eventually being molded by top trainers in the game — all under the unwavering watch and guidance of their father.
“Bringing the truth of this father, and this family, to the screen was incredibly rewarding,” the filmmakers said in a statement released by the Press Club. “It’s not often we as audiences see — or, as filmmakers, get to tell — such a positive story about the Black community in film. Receiving this honor really brings it home for us, knowing that the Veritas Award recognizes the unsung heroes, not only for their triumphs but also, and more importantly, their humanity.”
Green will be joined at the virtual ceremony by brothers Tim and Trevor White, who are among the film’s three producers, and Isha Price, sister of Venus and Serena, one of its 10 executive producers. Previous winners of the Veritas Award are “Spotlight,” “Hidden Figures,” “The Post,” “Green Book,” “Bombshell” and “The Trial of the Chicago 7.”