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Primo Carnera – The Walking Mountain at MSG

Posted on 04/21/2008


The Madison Square Garden will again play host to a truly significant event in remembrance of the late Italian boxing champion Primo Carnera. Seventy-five years ago the 6 ft. 6 inch, 260-pound Carnera knocked out Jack Sharkey in Madison Square Garden to become World Heavyweight Champion. The Italian giant lifted all of Italy on his broad shoulders that June 29th in 1933 and forever became a legend.

This Tuesday night, April 22nd, a FREE world premiere screening of – “Carnera The Walking Mountain” will be presented in the WaMu Theater at Madison Square Garden.

Admission is free thanks to the main sponsors Regione Friuli Venezia Giulia, Angel Devil and W Hotel. To ensure and reserve seating for this special event please RSVP via the event website at

More than just a movie, this April 22nd event will be a gift to the boxing world and to all those who embrace courage, integrity, love of family, kindness and certainly prevailing over life’s hardships.

While reaching the pinnacle in boxing, becoming the World Heavyweight Champion, no other fighter – let alone a champion – was ever treated with more corruptness, less decency, and stripped more completely of dignity than Primo Carnera. Under the brilliant direction of famed Italian director Renzo Martinelli, the true meaning and greatness of the humble giant, with an even bigger dream, is brought to light.

Fully enveloped within the slimiest facet of the ruthless business of boxing, any chance the naïve former laborer, bricklayer and sometime stonecutter from the tiny village of Sequals, in Northern Italy, ever had of goodness and prosperity within the prize ring was doomed before he ever even set foot on American soil. Reportedly owned by ruthless mobsters and treated as such Carnera was ridiculed and shamed while earning the proudest title in all of sport, only to be left abandoned and broke, physically and financially, upon serving his purpose: grossing over 3 million dollars in gate money, hardly any of which made it’s way into the feeble purses Carnera was given.

While this was the end of the sad boxing career for Carnera, it was to be the beginning of a remarkable life of a true champion. Never allowing himself, or his family, to quit, Carnera rose to greatness by living his life with integrity and respect. Beloved by so many, Carnera embarked upon a successful journey back into the ring – as a popular wrestler, and also acted in several movies.

While this helped the devoted husband and father to amass wealth, Carnera was already rich – with strength, self-pride and family. This simply enabled the big-hearted hero to follow another dream, helping neglected children. The foundation which bears his name, established and operating out of love and respect by his children Giovanna and Umberto Carnera, instills the character of this honorable gentleman and honors his commitment to the “forgotten” children around the world. This is the true story of the heavyweight champion. Boxing played a part; albeit rather small and ugly, in the life of a giant… in size and moral stature.

The world premiere, organized by Ilaria Niccolini Production, will be offered with free admission and will be followed by the Italian premiere one week later in Lake Como, on April 30th.

“Carnera – The Walking Mountain” is a gift of a special evening to all history, movie and boxing fans. Come greet the entire cast of the movie, including Academy Award winner F. Murray Abraham, Academy Award nominee Burt Young, Paul Sorvino, Antonio Cupo, Paolo Seganti and the 6’9″ Andrea Iaia, who aptly undertook the arduous task in the role of Primo Carnera.

Olympic Gold medallist and former world middleweight champion Nino Benvenuti, as well as Emile Griffith, Vito Antuofermo, Lou Duva, Vinnie Maddalone, Lou Savarese and Joe Mesi are just some of the heralded boxers who will be on hand, as will legendary wrestling great Bruno Sammartino.

Come to Madison Square Garden this Tuesday, April 22nd, at 6:30pm, and be treated to a first class event – honoring a first class guy.

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