MANILA, December 10, 2021 – HBO Asia Original Film GENSAN PUNCH, which is inspired by the true story of Naozumi Tsuchiyama, who defies the odds to become a professional boxer, squares off exclusively on HBO GO from December 16, 2021.
The film centers around Nao, a Japanese man who dreams of becoming a professional boxer. While his skills may be undeniable, his prosthetic leg leads him to fail “physical condition regulations” – rendering him unable to fight professionally. Undeterred, Nao sets off on a journey to the Philippines, where the road to pursing his dream takes him to the so-called Gensan Quarter of General Santos City – a place long renowned for producing athletes including legendary boxer Manny Pacquiao.
GENSAN PUNCH was one of two winners of the prestigious Kim Jiseok Award handed out at the 26th Busan International Film Festival held in October. The award was given to films reflecting the contemporary standing of Asian cinema. The film also screened at the “Gala Selection (Non-Competition) of the 34th Tokyo International Film Festival which ran from October 30 to November 8, 2021.
The accolades and recognition for GENSAN PUNCH are more highlights to add to the stellar career of visionary director and producer Brillante Mendoza. From his first film MASAHISTA which went on to win the Golden Leopard (Video Competition) at the 2005 Locarno International Film Festival, Mendoza went on to become the first Filipino to win the Best Director award at the 2009 Cannes Film Festival for KINATAY. He also received the rank of Chevalier (Knight) of Order of Arts and Letters – one of France’s highest awards given to people with significant contributions to the fields of art and literature.
With a distinct knack for telling uniquely Filipino stories with universal sensibilities, Brillante Mendoza’s work in the world of film has received awards and nominations in major competitions in Venice, Berlin, Cannes, San Sebastian, Cairo, and more.
GENSAN PUNCH was filmed in both the Philippines and Japan, and stars Shogen (Death Note; Street Fighter: Assassin’s Fist), Ronnie Lazaro (Affliction; Manila Kingpin: The Asiong Salonga Story), Kaho Minami (Dream Street; Hotaru), Beauty Gonzales (The Heiress; Angelito: Batang Ama) and Vince Rillon (3pol Trobol: Huli Ka Balbon!; Ang Probinsyano).
Directed by Brillante Mendoza, the award-winning sports film is created and written by Honee Alipio, produced by Takahiro Yamashita and Krisma Maclang Fajardo and executive produced by Brillante Ma. Mendoza, Simon Crowe and Fumie Suzuki Lancaster.
Stream or download GENSAN PUNCH only on HBO GO from December 16, 2021. Enjoy other martial arts shows such as the six-movie Rocky franchise, Tom-Yum-Goong, Ong-Bak, and the HBO series Warrior now on HBO GO. Subscribe to HBO GO online at www.hbogoasia.ph or the mobile app via the App Store or Play Store on your device for as low as ₱99.70/month. Or access HBO GO via Cignal, Globe and Skycable. HBO GO is also available on Android TV, Apple TV, LG TV and Samsung Smart TV – and comes with AirPlay and Google Cast functionality.