Muhammad Ali has had the movie treatment, as has Mike Tyson, and Joe Louis, and James J. Braddock, and even Chuck Wepner. But not George Foreman.
Until now. Foreman, one of the most fascinating heavyweight boxers in history, a man who has lived an absolutely fascinating life, will get the silver screen treatment soon. As per a report from Deadline, a biopic on Foreman – as yet untitled – will be made by director George Tillman Jr.
Actor Khris Davis will play the lead role, while actor Sullivan Jones will play the part of Muhammad Ali. On Davis being selected to play “Big George,” director Tillman Jr said, “We went through an extensive search across the world to find someone who could channel George.
And ultimately, Khris was the only one who could encapsulate his journey so effortlessly as he went from one of boxing’s most feared fighters to retirement only to achieve one of the most astonishing comebacks at age 45.”
Fans who admire Foreman, love him even, know all about how he went from Texan street mugger in Houston’s “Bloody Fifth” to raw amateur boxer, one who made astonishing progress, who made it to the 1968 Olympics where he won gold, and then reached the top, as world heavyweight king in 1973, before Foreman traveled to the African Jungle and his date with Ali.
And fight fans know how Foreman launched THE most amazing boxing comeback in 1987; it’s unlikely climax the winning back of the heavyweight crown some 20 years after losing it to Ali.
And there was a whole lot of other stuff in the middle. It will be especially interesting to see how the forthcoming film portrays Foreman’s famous religious experience, his life-changing experience inside that sweltering Puerto Rican dressing room in March of 1977.
As we know, when Foreman did come back to the ring, a full decade after the loss to Jimmy Young, he was unrecognizable, totally changed from his brooding and surly 1970s incarnation.
So many great fighters, and some not so great, have had films made about them. As far as this one goes, it really is a case of about time! Let’s hope “Big George” has a cameo in the movie.