Will Smith Shares Denzel Washington’s Inspiring Words After SAG Win

Will Smith Shares Denzel Washington’s Inspiring Words After SAG Win

Adding yet another trophy to his mantle of awards, Will Smith said that his recent Screen Actors Guild award for Best Actor was “one of the greatest moments” of his career.

But, according to Smith, hearing his mentor Denzel Washington telling him that “this is your year” was an achievement as well.

The “Fresh Prince” won the award for his role as Richard Williams, father of tennis pros Serena and Venus, in the film King Richard. According to People, Smith acknowledged Washington and their relationship and spoke about what the most Oscar-nominated Black actor of all time said to him amid his first SAG Award win.

“We’ve spent a lot of time together. So we’ve been talking, he’s always been a mentor for me, and he grabbed me, and he said, ‘This is your year,’ “Smith told PEOPLE host Kay Adams. “He just hugged me, and he said, ‘I’m so happy for you. Just love who you’re becoming,’”

Smith continues, “He knew me years ago. I would go to Denzel for advice, so he’s seen me through the years, and he was just telling me how proud he is of who I’ve become and what I’ve become. He was saying that he felt like a weight was lifted off of his shoulders somehow.”

Based on the true story of Serena and Venus Williams’ childhood, the movie King Richard explores Richard’s experience with fatherhood and his singular vision to secure his daughters’ futures in the sports world. Smith also produced the film.

The accolades continue to roll in for Smith.

In an Instagram post last month, the Wild Wild West actor said that his memoir, Will, has surpassed a million in sales.

Last summer, the rapper-turned-actor announced the book WILL, was on its way. In the memoir, Smith shares his journey from his childhood in Philadelphia to his rise as one of the most remarkable entertainment moguls in the modern era. He’s been a household name since the 1990s, starring in The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air and making his way on the movie scene in hit films like Bad Boys (1995) and Men in Black (1997). Over the last three decades, Smith has had a thriving movie career with multiple Oscar nominations and Grammy wins.