'Southpaw' movie starring Jake Gyllenhaal to shoot in Pittsburgh

Director Antoine Fuqua is coming home to Pittsburgh to make his next movie, “Southpaw,” starring Jake Gyllenhaal, who shot “Love & Other Drugs” here in fall 2009.

“Southpaw” is a drama about the junior middleweight champion of the world who suffers a tragedy that causes his world to come crashing down around him. To regain the respect and love of his daughter, he fights to put his life back together.

The story, apparently set in New York and based on a screenplay by Kurt Sutter (“Sons of Anarchy”), will film in Indiana, Pa., and Pittsburgh. Shooting will take place in Indiana, Pa., from mid- to late June and in Pittsburgh from early July to early August.

Hope Films Inc. will hold an open call for paid extras on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Indiana Mall (use entrance near Sears and look for signs), 2334 Oakland Ave., Indiana, PA 15701. The mall is about 60 miles from Pittsburgh, just beyond the IUP campus.

In Indiana, more than 1,000 men and women age 18 and older (all types) will be needed during the course of eight days to portray boxing spectators. Extras will have the opportunity to work multiple days. Others also will be needed for Pittsburgh filming.

All hopefuls also can visit www.movieextraspittsburgh.com and download a form, attach a recent photo and send by email or regular mail.

Mr. Fuqua, who directed Denzel Washington to his best actor Oscar in “Training Day,” recently made “Olympus Has Fallen” with Gerard Butler, Aaron Eckhart and Morgan Freeman and “Brooklyn’s Finest” starring Don Cheadle, Ethan Hawke and Richard Gere.

He doesn’t shrink from challenges or working with some of Hollywood’s strongest leading men. He also directed Mark Wahlberg in “Shooter,” Clive Owen in “King Arthur,” Bruce Willis in “Tears of the Sun,” Jamie Foxx in “Bait” and Chow Yun-Fat in “The Replacement Killers.”

While promoting “Shooter,” he told the Post-Gazette, “I grew up around some pretty tough guys in my life, you know, I mean Pittsburgh. Born on the Hill, grew up in Homewood and Pittsburgh in general. The thing about Pittsburgh is, I tell people, we’re concrete and steel, man.”

The Weinstein Co. is expected to release the movie, which was teased at the Cannes Film Festival during a market presentation in the Cannes Majestic Hotel on Friday.

Variety attended and graded some of the strongest and weakest trailers and gave “Southpaw” an A-plus.

The trade publication’s Ramin Setoodeh wrote of a short scene: “It mostly felt like a Nike ad with guys training in the gym. But, on the plus side, Gyllenhaal’s abs have never looked better.”

A studio representative said “Southpaw” is coming to Western Pennsylvania because of the commonwealth’s tax credit and “because the production team loves the look of the city and thinks it’s an all-around great place to film a movie.”

Movie editor Barbara Vancheri: bvancheri@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1632. Read her blog: www.post-gazette.com/madaboutmovies.

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