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The Bruised trailer is Halle Berry’s MMA answer to Rocky

Berry comes out swinging in her directorial debut

On Thursday, Netflix debuted the first trailer for Bruised, the new mixed martial arts drama starring Academy Award winner Halle Berry. The movie, which marks Berry’s directorial debut, premiered out of the 2020 Toronto Film Festival, where Netflix scooped it up for a hefty $20 million. The first trailer makes clear why: Berry is in full underdog Rocky Balboa mode, landing her punches in the lead and hitting the sports drama tropes just as hard.

Produced by Basil Iwanyk (John Wick, Sicario), Bruised tells the story of Jackie Justice, a now disgraced MMA fighter who agrees to a brutal underground fight in order to win her way back into spotlight, all while attempting to wrestle with her inner demons and reconcile with her son Manny whom she abandoned years before.

The trailer features Berry, bruised and bloodied, as she struggles to lift herself from the mat after a devastating defeat. According to one report, Berry threw herself into the role — and broke two ribs in the process. “[It was] kind of a crazy injury,” stunt coordinator Eric Brown told Entertainment Weekly in August. “But that was just her intensity … Halle’s a special case. I’ve worked with tons of actors, and almost none of them have that kind of work ethic.”

Bruised premieres on Netflix on Nov. 24.

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