De Niro joins the Cannes throng

Premiere for a boxing saga made with “passion”.

by Richard Mowe

Seconds out … Robert De Niro as manager Ray Arcel and Edgar Ramirez as Roberto Duran in Hands Of Stone
Seconds out … Robert De Niro as manager Ray Arcel and Edgar Ramirez as Roberto Duran in Hands Of Stone Photo: Cannes Film Festival

Robert De Niro’s career will be celebrated as part of the Cannes Film Festival’s stellar array when he appears in person for a special world premiere screening of his forthcoming boxing saga Hands Of Stone.

The film, which will be shown at a special screening on 16 May in the Grand Theatre Lumière of the Palais des Festivals, tells of the Panamanian fighter Roberto Duran (played by Edgar Ramirez), whose career peaked with his legendary fights with Sugar Ray Leonard. De Niro plays his coach and manager, Ray Arcel.

De Niro describes the film as “uplifting, triumphant, providing a good time for audiences.” He added: “I am so excited about coming back to Cannes, especially with this film, of which I am so proud.” De Niro previously has been at the Festival with Martin Scorsese’s Taxi Driver as well as in Roland Joffé’s The Mission. He was also head of the jury in 2011.

The film, directed by Venezuelan filmmaker Jonathan Jakubowicz, will be released in the US on 26 August through the Weinstein Company, whose boss Harvey Weinstein suggested it was “vintage” De Niro. “Anyone who knows Bob and his passion for boxing will realise that his input has made the movie very realistic and smart. This promises to be a fantastic night as well as a tribute to one of the great men of our industry.”

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