'King Richard' 's Saniyya Sidney Says She's Still in Touch with Serena and Venus Williams: 'That's Family'

Saniyya Sidney stars as a young Venus Williams in the 2021 film King Richard

Saniyya Sidney has formed a lifelong bond with Serena and Venus Williams.

While appearing on PEOPLE & Entertainment Weekly's red carpet special ahead of the 28th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards, the actress, 15, said that she and the professional tennis players are still in touch after she played Venus in the 2021 film King Richard.

She recalled meeting the Williams sisters for the first time when Will Smith (who portrays their father Richard Williams Jr. in the film) surprised her and Demi Singleton (who plays Serena) with a visit from the tennis superstars. Sidney said the experience was unlike any other.

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"Oh my gosh, Demi and I ... we were just like, 'Okay, what are we gonna do?'" she said. "But it was an amazing experience and we just talked and talked and talked. Those are our big sisters now, which is just crazy to say."

So is she still in touch with them? asked PEOPLE's Jeremy Parsons. "Oh, yeah," she said. "Like, that's family, for sure."

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Saniyya Sidney Serena and Venus williams
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King Richard follows Serena and Venus' start in tennis and their rise to becoming champions in the sport. The film comes from director Reinaldo Marcus Green (Joe Bell).

Alongside Sidney, Singleton, 15, and Smith, 53, the film also stars Aunjanue Ellis, Jon Bernthal, Dylan McDermott and Tony Goldwyn.

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During her interview with PEOPLE and Entertainment Weekly, where she wore a cornflower blue Yeprem gown, Sidney also opened up about when she got the call that she had landed the part of Venus.

"It was a dream come true, first of all," she said. "My agents called me, I was so nervous and excited, and when they told me, I was crying — 'cause I was playing my childhood hero."

The 28th Annual SAG Awards are being broadcast live on TNT and TBS Sunday, Feb. 27.

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