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Will Smith’s ‘King Richard’ to Close AFI Fest 2021

Festival will run from Nov. 10 to Nov. 14

Will Smith’s “King Richard,” in which he plays the father of tennis greats Venus and Serena Williams, will close the 2021 AFI Fest, it was announced on Wednesday.

The Closing Night screening will take place on Nov. 14 at the historic TCL Chinese Theatre in Los Angeles, California.

Reinaldo Marcus Green directed the film that was written by Zach Baylin and produced by Tim White and Trevor White’s Star Thrower Entertainment and Smith’s own production company Westbrook.

“AFI’s mission includes inspiring audiences, and ‘King Richard’ sets the bar for this year,” Sarah Harris, director of programming at AFI Festivals, said in a statement. “Movies often deliver when we need them most, and now is the perfect time for this film to remind young people that nothing is out of reach, and that with perseverance and determination they can influence future generations.”

“King Richard” follows Richard Williams, the father of Venus and Serena Williams, who is instrumental in raising two of the most gifted athletes of all time. Saniyya Sidney stars as Venus while Demi Singleton plays Serena.

Aunjanue Ellis, Tony Goldwyn, Jon Bernthal, Andy Bean, Kevin Dunn and Craig Tate also star. Isha Price, Serena Willims, Venus Williams, James Lassiter, Jada Pinkett Smith, Adam Merims, Lynn Harris, Allan Mandelbaum, Jon Mone and Peter Dodd served as the executive producers.

The film will be released in U.S. theaters and on HBO Max on Nov. 19. AFI Fest is taking place from Nov. 10 to Nov. 14.