By Johnny Walker
Southpaw, a film vehicle developed for Detroit rapper Eminem, has been dropped by Dreamwork Pictures. As the title implies, Eminem, whose previous experience in the film industry was the hit biopic 8 Mile, where he played himself, was this time to play a southpaw welterweight boxer who makes it to the top, only to lose it all and have to start over again. The script for the proposed drama was penned by none other than Kurt Sutter, the showrunner and writer for the FX biker drama Sons of Anarchy.
According to www.deadline.com, Dreamworks may have been concerned about a glut of movies about combat sports on the market, including the Micky Ward biopic The Fighter, and the upcoming MMA drama, Warrior. Southpaw is intended to function not only as a boxing drama, however, but also as a metacommentary on the rapper’s own rise, fall, and eventual recovery.
“In a way, this is a continuation of the 8 Mile story, but rather than a literal biography, we are doing a metaphorical narrative of the second chapter of his life,” Sutter explains. “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.””
With Dreamworks out of the picture (no pun intended), the filmmakers behind Southpaw are now pitching the movie to other interested parties, so all is not lost for those hoping to see Eminem getting punched in the face on the silver screen.