HANDS OF STONE the movie , inspired by the boxing career of Panamanian boxing legend Roberto Duran, with Robert De Niro playing a central role as Duran’s mentor and trainer will be e released in over 2,000, US and Panama cinemas on August 26.
The film directed by Jonathan Jakubowicz (Express Kidnapping) has Edgar Ramirez as Duran , Usher as Sugar Ray Leonard defeated by Duran in Montreal and who turned the tables in a return fight. The cast also includes Ruben Blades (Carlos Eleta), John Turturro (Frankie Carbo) and Ana de Armas (Happiness Duran).
In addition to Blades, other local performers involved in the $30 million production are Aaron Zebede (Eugenio Iglesias), Leo Wiznitzer (commissioner), Janelle Davidson (Sharon Leonard) Carlos Alfredo Lopez (journalist) and Robin Duran (pototo) and scores of local expat extras, including Canadian,Germain Courchene, who witnessed Duran defeating Sugar Ray Leonard in Montreal in 1980, and was selected as De Niro’s stand in double for the movie.
Hands of Stone, was filmed in Panama and the New York. The Weinstein Company, who in 2015, had 2000 movie theaters in the United States.
Hands of Stone, which received funding from the government of Panama, is considered a national film.
The fight that Courchesne witnessed in 1980 had Leonard defending the WBC Welterweight Championship for the second time. Durán was the WBC #1 welterweight contender.
Leonard abandoned his usual slick boxing style and stood flat-footed withDurán. Leonard, angry with Durán over traded insults, wanted to beatDurán at his own game. The tactic resulted in a great fight but a losing effort. Durán won by decision. The scores were 147-147, 145-144, and 146-144. The bitter words between the two fighters, coupled with the close result, virtually guaranteed a rematch which became the celebrated “no mas” (no more) fight when Duran, in the 8th round, turned his back on Leonard, and said to the referee “no mas”, words that made his popularity plunge in Panama. He regained it later with more victories and is widely regarded as one of the world’s greatest boxers.
It is loaded with memorabilia and videos of some of his most memorable fights..
He is a member of the Boxing Hall of Fame, a sports ambassador for Panama, and has a sports arena named after him.