Boxing promoter Lou DiBella is putting his movie producer hat back on, and is teaming with rapper-entrepreneur 50 Cent on a new project. They have acquired the rights to the documentary "TAPIA," a film about the star-crossed former world champion Johnny Tapia, who died in May 2012 after a tumultuous life that featured majestic highs (he was a five time world champion) and crushing lows (Tapia had a hard time steering clear of cocaine).
The world premiere of the documentary will take place at the Los Angeles Film Festival on Saturday, June 15 at the Regal Cinemas L.A. Here is the trailer.
The film's director, Eddie Alcazar, was filming the former fighter up until his death, at age 45, from heart disease. The doc touches on Tapia's mother's kidnapping and murder when Johnny was 8 years old, his drug addiction, mental illness and near death experiences. First person narration from Tapia himself, archival footage, and personal photos put a stamp on the film.
"I'm thrilled to join 50 in acquiring this riveting documentary," said DiBella, who produced "Love Ranch" (2010); starring Helen Mirren and Joe Pesci, as well as "Viva Baseball!" (2005). "This is not a boxing film, but a film about tragedy, triumph, demons and redemption. Johnny gives us an honest assessment of his strengths and frailties; he reminds us of the power and resiliency of the human spirit."
50 Cent entered the boxing promotion business earlier this year, and has relied on DiBella to bring him up to speed on the intricacies and foibles of the sport.