Jake Gyllenhall Watched and Studied Manny Pacquiao Fights To Prepare for Boxing Film ‘Southpaw’

Jake Gyllenhaal who rose to global attention with his impressive and unforgettable portrayals in hit movies such as “Bubble Boy,” “Brokeback Mountain,” “The Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time,” “The Day After Tomorrow,” “Nightcrawler” and “Donnie Darko” reveals anew his acting prowess in “Southpaw” as a boxer who is a southpaw puncher very much like the world’s greatest boxing champ has ever known, the Philippines’ Manny Pacquiao.

 SOUTHPAW     The Caesar's Palace bout that could redeem Billy's life and career (Billy wins!).  extras, FW, Beau Knapp (Jon Jon),JG, Dominic Colon (Mikey) Boxing Coordinator Terry Claybon

              From acclaimed director Antoine Fuqua (“Training Day”) comes a hard hitting blow by blow account in “Southpaw” – the story of Billy “The Great” Hope, Junior Middleweight Boxing Champion of the World portrayed by the multi-talented actor Jake Gyllenhaal.  Billy has it all, wealth, health, a world title, a loving wife and a lovely daughter but lost it all when his wife tragically dies. Fighting for the custody of his daughter, Billy enters the battle of his life as he struggles to become a contender once again to win back his daughter and their life.

 The Billy Hope-Kalil Turay fight at Madison Sq. Garden, where a despondent Billy spirals out of control.  JG     (L-R) AMY MCADAMS and JAKE GYLLENHAAL star in SOUTHPAW

              Apart from psyching up as Billy, like his previous roles, Gyllenhaal stepped into the core of his character by undergoing a dramatic body transformation.  According to director Fuqua, Gyllenhaal had trained in the boxing ring for seven days a week for six hours a day.  In recent interviews, the director further revealed that, “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.  He was training like a fighter. I had him sparring, really getting hit. I put him in situations where I wanted to see what he was made of. No one but fighters understand the sacrifice it takes to be a fighter.”  


Billy waits in the stairwell waiting to get inside and clean the gym.  JG     Leila explodes in fury after Billy tells her that he cannot bring her to watch his charity fight.  Angela intercedes. OL, JG, NH

              Gyllenhaal, on the other hand shares that such transformation was a necessity for the role, physical and psychological, “Physicality is a way into the mental state of a character. I get off on knowing that my energy has shifted.”


We are introduced to the brawler Billy Hope at his victorious Madison Square Garden fight against Darius Jones. Billy's wife Maureen, his promoter Jordan and his pal Jon Jon cheer him on. Beau Flynn (Jon Jon), RM, CJ     SOUTHPAW

              “Southpaw” features an impressive cast that includes Rachel McAdams, Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson, Forest Whitaker, Naomie Harris and Rita Ora, plus music produced by Eminem.


              The greatest tale of redemption starts in the ring when “Southpaw” opens in Philippine cinemas this
July 22 (ahead of US release) from Pioneer Films. 

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