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On Wednesday, Fran Kirmser and her producing partner, Tony Ponturo, said that they have acquired the exclusive global, theatrical, and film rights to the life story of boxing legend Joe Louis.
Louis earned the heavyweight title in 1937 and he kept it for 11 years. One of his most remembered opponents was the German champion Max Schmeling. Louis won against Schmeling in a re-match on June 22, 1938, according to the Associated Press.
Louis’ life is filled with dramatic moments fit for a film. In addition to years of conflict with the Internal Revenue Service, Louis had a large impact on race relations in this country. Louis died in 1981.
Kirmser and Ponturro have previously produced sports stories on the stage. The producers have worked on a film about the Green Bay Packers and a project about the New York Yankees, according to Deadline. If the two decide to turn Louis' story into a play, it would be their fourth stage production based on a sports figure since 2010.