Eminem to Star in Boxing Film ‘Southpaw’
Eminem’s 2010 comeback continues, with news that the superstar MC will be returning to the big screen for his first starring role in eight years. Em received praise for his 2002 debut in ’8 Mile,’ but the troubled rapper refused to take on another feature film, and only recently made a brief cameo in the 2009 dramedy ‘Funny People.’
Once again loosely based on the events of his life, Em will be entering a slightly less familiar world this time around, as he has signed on to play the lead in the DreamWorks film ‘Southpaw,’ which tells the story of a “fast-rising welterweight boxer who brawls his way to the title, only to see his world crash down around him due to tragedy.”
‘Southpaw’ will be written by ‘Sons of Anarchy’ creator Kurt Sutter, who has been working with Em for several years on the project, once again culling from experiences from the MC’s past to create a world similar to Em’s own. “I took meetings with Marshall’s producing partners over the past seven years, looking for something to do together,” Sutter explained. “I know he’s very selective and doesn’t do a lot. But he shared so much of his personal struggle in this raw and very honest album ['Recovery'], one that I connected with on a lot of levels. He is very interested in the boxing genre, and it seemed like an apt metaphor, because his own life has been a brawl.”
While he won’t be playing a rapper this time, Sutter claims the film tells the story of Em’s life, post ’8 Mile.’ “We are doing a metaphorical narrative of the second chapter of his life,” Sutter said. “He’ll play a world-champion boxer who really hits a hard bottom and has to fight to win back his life for his young daughter. At its core, this is a retelling of his struggles over the last five years of his life, using the boxing analogy. I love that the title refers to Marshall being a lefty, which is to boxing what a white rapper is to hip-hop; dangerous, unwanted and completely unorthodox. It’s a much harder road for a southpaw than a right-handed boxer.”
Though it has been picked up by DreamWorks sight unseen, the script for ‘Southpaw’ has yet to be written, so the film will likely not hit theaters until late 2011 or 2012.