Gina Rodriguez is heading behind the lens…
The 36-year-old Puerto Rican actress will be making her feature film directorial debut on a feature film about a fictional character inspired by some of Mexican American boxer Ryan Garcia’s experiences in and around the sport.
Rodriguez is developing the project alongside Garcia, One Community and Endeavor Content.
Rodriguez will direct, star, produce and co-write the screenplay with actor and playwright Bernardo Cubria. Garcia will also star star.
“I grew up in a boxing family and loved watching sports dramas with my dad. The philosophies of fighting – working hard, staying focused, being honest, fighting fair but to win – has stayed with me,” said Rodriguez. “On behalf of myself and my production company I Can and I Will, I couldn’t be more excited to partner with Ryan Garcia on this film. He is not only an outstanding athlete and champion, but a true advocate of normalizing and furthering conversations on mental health. His bravery has inspired me, and I am honored to have his trust to direct this film and guide his first foray into the arts. In One Community, Endeavor Content and WME, I have found empowering partners who are driven to tell stories that bring love, tolerance and healing to the world. I am humbled by their support, in addition to that of my incredibly talented friend and fellow artist Bernardo Cubria who will be leading us in creating a script that celebrates both the sport and our community. We cannot wait to share this story with audiences worldwide.”
Similar to films like Rocky and Creed, this inspiring sports drama follows a Mexican-American boxer, Alex Guerrero (Garcia), whose struggles with mental health rival his toughest bouts in the ring. After a chance encounter with a World Champion propels him into the spotlight, he must prove to himself and the world that he has what it takes to come out on top.
“I am very excited about the opportunity to work with Gina, Bernardo, One Community, and Endeavor Content on this project,” said Garcia. “My goals have always been to prove myself in the ring and to also continue to share my story in hopes that it will inspire others. Boxing will always be at the forefront of my career and I cannot wait to return to the ring very soon as a stronger and healthier KingRy.”
The film will shoot mid-next year so as not to interfere with Garcia’s fight schedule.
“Ryan is an incredible fighter and remarkable human whose relentless focus and dedication has made him a superstar in the ring, but even more impressive is his desire to use his platform to help others by sharing his own struggles with anxiety and depression. Gina and Bernardo’s vision for this story spoke to us immediately and we are so excited to work with this incredibly inspiring team,” said Scott Budnick, CEO One Community.
The project is sure to become one of the hottest properties on the market as it is set to break barriers with a Latinx presence in front and behind the camera.
Garcia started boxing at age 7 and was a 15-time national champion. Since joining the Golden Boy stable in 2016, Garcia has steadily made his case as one of the best and most exciting up-and-coming boxers by defeating fighters such as Romero Duno, Francisco Fonseca, Carlos Morales and Jason Velez. His most recent match against Olympic Gold Medalist Luke Campbell was a true display of perseverance as Ryan hit the floor for the first time in his professional career to come back and defeat Campbell with a gut-wrenching punch to the body in the seventh round.
At 22, Garcia has an undefeated professional record of 21-0, 18 by way of knock out, currently holds the WBC Interim Lightweight title and trains under world renowned trainer, Eddie Reynoso and his father, Henry Garcia. In addition, he has amassed over 13 million followers across social platforms bringing new audiences to the sport.
Rodriguez is best known for playing the title role on the hit series Jane the Virgin, for which she won a Golden Globe for Best Actress in a Television Series Musical or Comedy. Her upcoming projects include Netflix’s film Awake and Netflix’s mini series Lost Ollie.