Eight-weight world boxing champion Manny Pacquiao has been held in high regard in sporting circles for many years – and now, ‘Pac-Man’ will be immortalised in ‘Manny: The Movie’.
The 35-year-old Filipino fighter has embarked on a remarkable journey from a torrid upbringing in poverty, to worldwide fame by putting his body on the line in over 50 professional bouts.
The film will shed particular light on his journey going full-circle since then: Pacquiao has used his fame and hero status back in the Philippines to enter the national political scene, where he works to eradicate the poverty he endured as a child as well as the economic meltdown of the nation.
As the Telegraph’s Gareth Davies put it when addressing the story on Wednesday: “It is said that when Pacquiao enters the ring, a truce is declared between guerrillas and the national army, and the crime rate across the Philippines drops to zero.”
The docu-film about his life and times will premiere at the SXSW Film Festival in March, ahead of a full opening in the Philippines on March 12.
Adding an extra level of ‘epic’ to the tale is news that Academy Award nominee Liam Neeson has provided the narration for the film, while it has been directed by Ryan Moore and Leon Gast of When We Were Kings.
Pacquiao next fights on April 12 in Las Vegas against WBO welterweight champion Timothy Bradley in a much-anticipated sequel to their thrilling-yet-controversial first clash in the summer of 2012, where unbeaten American Bradley won the belt from ‘Pac-Man’ on a split decision.