Just when you thought LGBT representation couldn’t get any better in Hollywood, Oscar-winning director Lenny Abrahamson announces that he will be sitting in the director’s chair for a biopic about the life of legendary boxer Emile Griffith.
Talk about this biopic has been circulating since 2015 and now Queerty is reporting that it is officially happening. While speaking with Deadline, Abrahamson had this to say about bringing Griffith’s story to the big screen:
“As a character study, Griffith was incredibly compelling. There was a gentleness and innocence about him, and he never seemed conflicted about his sexuality; indeed he found joy in it. He inhabited two worlds — the gay scene in New York in the ’60s and the macho world of boxing. The societal stigma at that time was dreadful and created a crushing pressure on him.”
In March of 1964, Griffith was defending his world title against Cuban boxer Benny “The Kid” Paret at Madison Square Garden. During a routine weigh-in, Paret displayed blatant homophobia by calling Griffith a “maricón” which is the spanish word for faggot. He even grabbed Griffith’s butt in a taunting manner as well. During the 12th round of their fight, Griffith cornered Paret and knocked him unconscious where he sustained injuries and was hospitalized. Ten days later, Paret passed away.
Abrahamson will be partnering with producer Ed Guiney, whom he worked with on the Oscar-winning film Room. No release dates or casting announcments have been made but we will keep you updated as more news is released.
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