Sony Pictures and The Weinstein Company have pulled the ol’ switcheroo in trading release dates for Sacha Baron Cohen’s comedy Grimsby and the Jake Gyllenhaal-led boxing drama, Southpaw. Initially, Cohen’s football hooligan film occupied the July 31 spot, though Sony has opted to push the comedy back into February 2016, where it will go toe to toe with Ben-Hur.
In its place, The Weinstein Company quickly snapped up the vacant release date, which means that it is Gyllenhaal’s sports film that will make its bow on July 31, 2015. Directed by Antoine Fuqua, Southpaw will step into the boxing shoes of Billy “The Great” Hope, a talented fighter who teeters on the edge of a breakdown following a family tragedy. Rachel McAdams and Forest Whitaker are also on board for the flick, and Fuqua sung the praises of his leading man in a recent interview.
Jake is going to change how people see him. I had him training twice a day in the boxing ring, he did two-a-days seven days a week. I pretty much had him with me and my trainer every day. I took him to almost every fight. I had him train at Floyd Mayweather’s gym in Vegas and we watched Floyd’s fights, and the Manny Pacquiao fight. He trained in New York at Church Gym with real fighters. We literally turned him into a beast… Jake, my god, he’s a very electric, powerful fighter in this movie, and a guy who fights for his daughter. I’m confident that this will change how people see Jake, as a leading man.
Cometh the hour, cometh the man. Gyllenhaal has been garnering considerable goodwill in the industry thanks to a string of stellar performances in Prisoners and last year’s excellent Nightcrawler. Now, after a remarkable physical transformation, the actor is aiming for even greater things.
Southpaw will roar into theaters on July 31, 2015, while . For now, let us know your early impressions of Jake Gyllenhaal’s latest dramatic outing in the comments.