The South by Southwest Film Festival and Conference (SXSW) in Austin, Texas recently announced that it will host the premiere of the Hollywood-produced “MANNY: THE MOVIE.”
The festival which runs from March 7 to 15 will mark the global debut of the highly anticipated documentary movie of the celebrated Filipino sports icon.
Narrated by Academy Award nominee Liam Neeson, “MANNY” chronicles the untold story of Manny Pacquiao– from his impoverished childhood years in war-torn Mindanao, his struggle to survive in Manila by working in construction sites and warehouses after running away from home at the age of 14– to his dramatic rise as a ten-time boxing world champion.
As the first boxing congressman in history, his Cinderella-man story has awed and inspired countless fans from all walks of life; and his continuing saga adds only to the checkered and amusing story of this remarkable global superstar.
The film is directed by Ryan Moore and Academy Award winner Leon Gast.
Gast had previously done the boxing documentary “When We Were Kings” which showcased the epic match between boxing legends Muhammad Ali and George Foreman.
For “MANNY: THE MOVIE” both directors had to go through thousands of hours of film and video footage to create a thorough documentation of Pacquiao’s storied career, beginning with his first few bouts in small venues to his most classic rivalries with some of the greatest fighters in boxing.
The film also includes interviews with actor Mark Wahlberg, comedian Jimmy Kimmel, Jeremy Piven and many other international celebrities and features original music from acclaimed Hollywood composer Lorne Balfe (Inception, Dark Night, Iron Man).
The film’s SXSW debut holds some significance for Pacquiao as it was in Texas where he won his 8th world boxing title — a feat yet unmatched in history. The subsequent Philippine commercial exhibition on March 12 also segues perfectly to his upcoming rematch with American boxer Timothy Bradley in Las Vegas on April 12, 2014.
While trainer Freddie Roach had previously mentioned the need for Paquaio’s undivided attention to knock down Bradley, his fans remain hopeful that the People’s Champ would take some time off to join them in this momentous event.