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Usher to Portray Legendary Boxer Sugar Ray Leonard in Biopic

Moses Robinson, Getty Images

Usher is getting in shape and there’s a reason why. The R&B superstar is prepping to play legendary boxer Sugar Ray Leonard. The biopic ‘Hands of Stone’ also stars Robert De Niro and Gael Garcia Bernal, who is also directing the film.

While recording his still-untitled album in London, he’s been training in boxing gyms and jogging in the city. “I’m in preparation later this year to play the role of Sugar Ray Leonard in a boxing film and it’s going to be incredible,” Usher revealed to the BBC. “If you guys see me running around London that’s what it is. If you see me in the corners boxing, I’m doing that while working on this album.”

The movie tells the story of Panamanian boxer Roberto Durán (played by Garcia Bernal) who was nicknamed “Manos de Piedra” (translation: “Hands of Stone”). De Niro will portray the late boxing trainer Ray Arcel who coached Durán to several championships. “This is going to be an incredible movie — in time an incredible story — and I’m really looking forward to that,” Usher said.

Usher is no stranger to the big screen. The 33-year-old entertainer has been acting since the mid-’90s. Usher’s last movie appearance was in the 2010 romantic comedy ‘Killers’ starring Ashton Kutcher and Katherine Heigl.

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