Monday, December 28, 2015
Gbenga Akinnagbe Lands The Lead For Prison Boxing Biopic, HEART BABY!
Remember what I said about all there being no shortage of boxing movies anytime soon? Well, take a look at Angela Shelton who is now ready to add to that growing list of titles readying throughout the next few years.
The new movie, Heart Baby!, has just cast The Following and The Wire co-star, actor Gbenga Akinnagbe, in the lead role of then-convict George Lee Martin who, long after earning a reputation as an undefeated boxer in Tennessee's prison system, suprises the world when he denies a place among Team USA for the Olympic boxing division - offered in exchange for his freedom. Moreover, Deadline expands a bit more on the premise via statements from Shelton who says "You will not find anything about this story anywhere on the web except an article about the John Tate/Larry Holmes fight being canceled in 1984," adding that the film will focus on why the cancellation took place.
The film is also said to be postioning the role as a breakout Akinnagbe who has been taking in two months of boxing training with Will Smith's trainer for Ali, Darrell Foster, as well as drama coaching from Larry Moss. "This role — and the film — is undoubtedly, a game changer for Akinnagbe,” says Shelton whose longstanding friendship with Martin has lasted to date following his compassionate release from prison in the 1990's. "The journey of getting this story ready to shoot certainly has been a priceless experience for me."
The production is also behind Martin's efforts to start a community center to train young aspiring athletes and provide a save haven for children away the streets, and you will be able to learn more about what lies ahead for the community center via as the newly-launched official website in the weeks and months ahead.
Shedon is producing as are Shawn Caulin-Young and Kim Barnard with Twlight franchise co-star Jackson Rathbone, The Blind Side star Quinton Aaron, American Sniper co-star Keir O’Donnell and Justice Leak of Insurgent, Abe Benrubi from Bosch, Michael Badalucco of the hit series Bones and Ann Cusack from the award-winning thriller Nightcrawler rounding out the current cast.