Long time Santa Monica resident Alan Swyer
’s film “El Boxeo”
) has been nominated for the prestigious Imagen Award
in the category of Best Feature Documentary.
Swyer was previously a Film professor at the California universities USC, Pepperdine and Chapman, as well as the American Film Institute.
In “El Boxeo,” the director tells the dramatic story of the emergence of Latinos in boxing, and illustrates the evolution of the sport as Latinos exploded onto the scene to dominate what was once considered the traditional all-white sport. “Beisbol,” his first foray into the intriguing world of Latinos in sports, won the 2009 Imagen Award.
The Imagen Awards encourage and recognize the positive portrayals of Latinos in the entertainment industry. Swyer’s list of credits also include: HBO’s award-winning“Rebound: The Legend of Earl ‘The Goat’ Manigault” and “The Buddy Holly Story.”
“El Boxeo” is the definitive look at how boxing has become a Latino-dominated sport both in the ring and in the stands. The film features champions past and present as well as commissioners, managers, trainers, referees, broadcasters, and historians – from champions such as Oscar de la Hoya, Sergio Martinez, Julio Cesar Chavez, Canelo Alvarez, Boom Boom Mancini, Sugar Ray Leonard, Juan LaPorte, andWilfredo Vazquez Sr. and Jr. to Bob Arum, Jose Sulaiman, Richard Steele, Larry Merchant, Al Bernstein, and Lou DiBella, just to name a few.
“El Boxeo” has played at the International Puerto Rican Film Festival, the Oaxaca Filmfest in Mexico, where it was a prestigious Opening Night selection, and the audience choice for the Closing Night Reprise Screening, and the Los Angeles Latino International Film Festival.
Pulled from over eighty hours of new interviews, the film, in the words of the filmmakers, is about race, language, culture, politics, economics... and boxing. Showing how boxing has long been the sport of immigrants, the film uses boxing as a metaphor to show how group after group has fought both figuratively and literally for a better way of life. “El Boxeo” reveals how the immigrant pugilists redefined the world of boxing and established the West Coast as a new mecca in the sport. El Boxeo is as much a film about Latinos in boxing as it is about the immigrant stories that reshaped the sport.
Together with his producing partner Rick Gil de Montes, Swyer has created a film that will thrill not just boxing enthusiasts, but all those interested in sports, culture, and contemporary life.