“You don’t know me. Well, you do know me, you just don’t know you know me.”
This is the story of Chuck Wepner.
A New Jersey heavyweight boxing champion, Wepner’s life changed overnight when, in 1975, he was selected to fight Muhammad Ali in a highly publicized match. Sylvester Stallone happened to watch that fight, in which Wepner—an undisputed underdog who was barely expected to land a punch—lasted almost 15 rounds with The Greatest before suffering a TKO. By all accounts the scrappy performance from the Jersey guy inspired Stallone’s now-iconic film Rocky.
Now, Wepner’s story is coming to the big screen in Chuck, with Liev Schreiber in the ring as the titular character.
Chuck—also starring Elisabeth Moss and Naomi Watts as Wepner’s first and second wives, respectively—tells the whole story, from Wepner’s quick rise to fame as a local hero in Bayonne, New Jersey, and his equally swift descent.
If this first sneak peek at the film is any indication, you can expect some laughs, a stellar lineup of 1970’s hits, more than a few bloody knockouts, and an in-depth look at the life of the “real-life Rocky Balboa.”
Here’s the trailer:
Chuck, directed by Philippe Falardeau and starring Schreiber, Moss, Watts, Ron Perlman, Jim Gaffigan, Michael Rapaport, and Pooch Hall, hits theatres on May 5, 2017.