What to Read Next

Venus and Serena skip premiere of their documentary (TIFF 2012)

North Stars
September 12, 2012
View photos

Attendees at one of Tuesday's movie premieres at the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival were confronted with an interesting question: if the two subjects of a documentary don't show up for the screening, does it really happen?

See also: More coverage of the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival

Obviously, yes, the film by journalists Maiken Baird and Michelle Major titled "Venus and Serena" did have its world debut at TIFF on Tuesday, and both women were all smiles as they greeted the media and fans on the red carpet. But it was impossible to ignore two glaring absences from the premiere: the Williams sisters themselves.

According to the L.A. Times, it took four years for the tennis champ siblings to sign off on the documentary about their lives. And once they did, Baird and Major recorded over 450 hours of material over the span of 20 months following the duo around the world, interviewing them and their family members. But after all that, the Williams sisters suddenly pulled their support from the filmmakers when they saw the finished version of the film and felt "unhappy."

See also: Michael Sheen tries to avoid Rachel McAdams' spotlight at TIFF

Though neither sister made any preconditions before shooting began, they were reportedly upset with the way their father Richard was portrayed. After the initial screening in August, Venus and Serena requested that changes be made to the film, which is mostly complimentary to the sisters but includes information about Richard Williams' 78-page manifesto for their success and other children he had outside of marriage.

View photos

The changes that Baird and Major made were not sufficient enough for the Williams sisters to continue to support the film or attend its premiere in Toronto, which was specifically arranged so that it would fall after the U.S. Open, which Serena won.

"It's disappointing to us… We have a lot of respect for them and think their story is very inspiring," Major told the L.A. Times.

See also: Bill Murray 'reunites' with Stay Puft Marshmallow Man

"We think this is an important story, and we can only hope Venus and Serena come to see it that way too," Baird added.

Representatives from the Williams sisters have not commented on the current relationship between them, the documentary, and the filmmakers.

Fans at the TIFF screening, though, were more vocal about the rift.

"I'm on their side. I don't blame them. I find the media always talks about them in a negative light," one fan said.

Added another, "If it was just going to be a marketing piece for the Williams family, what's the point?"

While Baird and Major look for wide distribution at the festival, hopefully many more tennis fans will see for themselves the reason for the lost love between the star athletes and the dogged journalists.

An Overlooked Method To Pay Off Your Credit Card

If you're paying credit card interest, you could save hundreds or thousands of dollars by transferring your balance to this no-fee card.

The Newly Refined 2016 Mazda CX-5

With the 2016 Mazda CX-5, you don't have to compromise performance or style. Come by and drive a new Mazda CX-5 to experience the magic today!

Popular Sleep Aid Takes CVS by Storm

The simplest way to fall asleep fast and stay asleep all night.

How Can Refinancing Your Student Loans Save Money?

SoFi can help you reduce your student loans and help you pay off your debt hassle free!

Insane Navy Seal Flashlight, should it be banned?

The Military has recently released technology that is now available to the public. Get yours before they run out - Limited Supply!

Checkout the New Look of the 2016 Tundra

Your local Toyota dealer has unbelievable savings for you on a new Toyota Tundra Learn more today!

Amazon Prime Video, Wherever You Go

Stream thousands of movies and shows. Watch anywhere, even offline.

How Older Men Tighten Their Skin

Men, reduce the look of wrinkles, sagging skin and fine lines with this affordable and effective skin tightening treatment without leaving your home.

The New Fuel Behind Oil's Death Spiral

A stunning breakthrough in chemical engineering has unleashed a massive supply of fuel that could hand the United States 100% energy independence.

Liberty Mutual Insurance

Looking for a policy? Liberty Mutual could help you save on home insurance. Start your quote today.

Best Balance Transfer Credit Cards of 2016

Banks are offering 0% APR for up to 15 months right now. Don't pay interest on your purchases and transfer a balance today. Apply securely here.

99 Retirement Tips From Ken Fisher

Tip #18: Beware of Annuities. If you have a $500,000 portfolio, get all 99 tips by downloading “99 Retirement Tips From Ken Fisher”.

Get “Blue Light Happy”: At-Home Teeth Whitening

People.com StyleWatch editor tried Luster Pro Light to visibly whiten teeth in as little as 30 minutes. Her verdict: "It works great...I’m addicted."

Priceline Accommodations

Best Price Guarantee at Priceline. Over 300,000 Hotels w/Great Prices!