Given that Eminem – real name Marshall Mathers – was originally eyed to play the leading man in Antoine Fuqua’s edgy boxing drama, it’s rather apposite that the rapper’s new single, “Phenomenal,” underpins the latest TV spot for Southpaw.
Playing the part of Billy “The Great” Hope is Jake Gyllenhaal, a middleweight boxer that seems to have it all when suddenly he finds that all of the fame and fortune in the world can’t protect his family from harm. When tragedy strikes, Billy is knocked for six; far from the pedestal upon which he achieved so much. And so, in keeping with all great redemption stories, our protagonist, battered and bruised though he may be, needs to start over from the beginning if he is to win back the trust of his only daughter.
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To date, all of the promotional material for Southpaw has been on point; showcasing an unflinching character piece that appears to bring out the very best in Gyllenhaal. We’ve already seen the actor flex his acting muscles in the likes of Brokeback Mountain, End of Watch and, more recently, Nightcrawler. But for Fuqua’s drama, the role of Billy Hope is as much about physicality as it is dramatic chops, though we’re confident that the actor will be an outside favorite come award season later this year.
Jake Gyllenhaal will step into the ring for Fuqua’s riches-to-rags-to-redemption story when Southpaw hits theaters on July 24.
From director Antoine Fuqua (TRAINING DAY) and writers Kurt Sutter (SONS OF ANARCHY) and Richard Wenk (THE MECHANIC) comes SOUTHPAW – the story of Billy “The Great” Hope, Junior Middleweight Boxing Champion of the World. When tragedy strikes and he loses it all, Billy enters the battle of his life as he struggles to become a contender once again and win back those he loves. SOUTHPAW stars Academy Award® nominee Jake Gyllenhaal, Academy Award® winner Forest Whitaker, Rachel McAdams, Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson, Rita Ora, Naomie Harris and Victor Ortiz. In theaters July 2015.