Gavin O’Connor, the director behind the uplifting sports drama Miracle, about the United States stunning upset over the Soviet Union in the 1980 Olympics, has again helmed another drama revolving around sport. This time it is MMA (Mixed Martial Arts). The feature, titled Warrior, will hit theaters on September 9th and stars Tom Hardy and Joel Edgerton.
To cash in on the office timewaster that is the NCAA tournament, distribution studio, Lionsgate, diverts attention to the sport of MMA by unleashing the official posters for Warrior.
In Warrior, Tommy, an ex-Marine (Inception‘s Tom Hardy) haunted by a tragic past, returns to his hometown of Pittsburgh and enlists his father, a recovered alcoholic and his former coach, to train him for an MMA tournament awarding the biggest purse in the history of the sport. As Tommy blazes a violent path towards the title prize, his brother, Brendan, (Animal Kingdom‘s Joel Edgerton) a former MMA fighter unable to make ends meet as a public school teacher, returns to the amateur ring to provide for his family after being suspended from his day job. Even though years have passed, recriminations and betrayals keep Brendan bitterly estranged from both Tommy and his father.
But when Brendan’s unlikely rise as an underdog sets him on a collision course with Tommy, the two brothers must finally confront the forces that tore them apart, all the while waging the most intense, winner-takes-all battle of their lives.
In what is sure to be this year’s Fighter – just as The Fighter was last year’s Blind Side, according to one critic at least (I don’t see the correlation) – Warrior pairs two upcoming talents and gives them even greater visibility, especially Edgerton. Expect Warrior to be heavily promoted during the UFC telecasts on Spike TV.
In addition to Warrior, those who are fans of MMA will want to keep tabs on the releases of two documentaries. The first is Hamill, about deaf UFC fighter Matt Hamill. The other is Fightville, which revolves around a minor league establishment in Louisiana and examines the art and sport of fighting as well as shows the amount of self determination and hard work it takes to grow as a fighter and earn a spot with the major fight organizations. Fightville made its world premiere during the South by Southwest film festival.
Tags: Gavin O'Connor, Joel Edgerton, MMA, Tom Hardy, UFC, Warrior