MANILA (Reuters) - A film about Manny Pacquiao released on Wednesday offers a look into the Philippine boxer’s childhood before his much anticipated fight against Floyd Mayweather Jr next month.
“Kid Kulafu”, named after a brand of wine whose bottles Pacquiao collected as a child, charts his rise from humble beginnings to his first step into the boxing ring.
“He’s just like every one of us,” director Paul Soriano said at the film’s Manila premiere on Tuesday night. “He was born with nothing but because of God, because of hard work and faith, he became something.”
Soriano said he spent two years researching the film, much of it based on conversations with 36-year-old Pacquiao.
“Everyone can mimic his moves, but you can’t easily copy his courage,” said Buboy Villar, who plays the young Pacquiao.
“Pacquiao always faces people who are bigger than him and, as you can see, he’s scrawny as a kid, so I think all the rough experiences he had growing up helped to make him strong.”
The film opened in Philippine cinemas on Wednesday and will be shown in selected cinemas in the U.S. and Canada starting later this month.
Pacquiao faces Mayweather on May 2 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas in one of boxing’s most anticipated fights.
Reporting By Reuters Television in Manila; Writing by ydb in London; Editing by Larry King