Last year saw the theatrical release of two major motion pictures about the world of boxing with serious awards season potential on the behalf of both the cast and crew. But Southpaw and Creed didn’t quite prove up to snuff when it really mattered, even as the latter mentioned franchise sequel from writer/director Ryan Coogler and lead performer Michael B. Jordan did land a Best Supporting Actor nomination for franchise creator Sylvester Stallone.
With all of that against the sports sub-genre in film, writer/director Ben Younger (Boiler Room) is all set to put his money down on achieving where last year’s boxing epics didn’t with the theatrical release of Bleed for This. Starring Miles Teller (Whiplash) as former lightweight world champion Vinny Pazienza, Younger’s latest production hopes to provide direct competition to executive producer Harvey Weinstein’s like-minded sports drama Hands of Stone.
In the first official trailer for Bleed for This featured above, Teller plays Vinny like an overconfident young buck out to take the world for the proverbial ride, until an unfortunate car accident threatens to leave the young athlete indefinitely impaired and unable to ever fight again. Enter co-star Aaron Eckhart (London Has Fallen) as Vinny’s steadfast coach Kevin Rooney, and Teller is soon training to get back on his feet and achieve his goals as a world champion boxer.
While speaking to Us Weekly about taking on the role of Vinny Pazienza in Younger’s new film, Teller was quick to describe the extensive training regimen he put himself under in order to get in shape for the role. Not surprisingly, a rigorous diet and exercise regimen had its part to play, as Teller related:
“You can’t eat anything that you want. Like I remember Halloween was the only night I drank really in like 8 months. I didn’t eat bread for 7 months. You have to just stay committed. You’re playing a professional boxer. It’s embarrassing if you’re not in good shape. I just didn’t want to be embarrassed by not putting in the work physically.“
Teller certainly appears to be in the shape to take on the likes of any other lightweight contender, though it remains to be seen whether boxing film fans will line up to see Bleed for This over Weinstein’s Hands of Stone (which co-stars former Raging Bull lead actor Robert De Niro). Either way, viewers who enjoyed Southpaw and Creed last year will have two more dramas featuring similar thematic content to enjoy this year.
Bleed for This will see theatrical release in the U.S. on November 4th, 2016.