EXCLUSIVE: Destroyer and TIFF Rising Star Shamier Anderson and Designated Survivor actor Adan Canto are heading into the MMA arena for Halle Berry’s feature directorial debut Bruised, Deadline has learned.
Written by Michelle Rosenfarb, the pic follows Jackie Justice (played by Berry), a washed-up MMA wrestler who has failed at the one thing she’s ever been good at – fighting. When 6-year-old Manny, the son she walked out on years ago, returns to her doorstep, Jackie has to conquer her own demons, face one of the fiercest rising stars of the MMA world and ultimately fight to become the mother this kid deserves.
Anderson will play the owner of the female mixed martial arts league that Jackie Justice participates in. Canto plays Berry’s MMA manager and boyfriend.
Canto’s credits include the acclaimed Netflix series Narcos, ABC’s Blood and Oil and Fox’s The Following. On the film side, he co-starred as the Sunspot in 20th Century Fox’s X-Men: Days of Future Past. He recently wrote, directed and produced his first short The Shot, starring Theo Rossi.
In September, the Toronto International Film Festival recognized and honored Anderson as a 2019 TIFF Rising Star. He co-stars as twins Anton and Dario in the third Season of Amazon’s Goliath opposite Billy Bob Thornton. Anderson recently completed filming AMC’s For Life, a six-part anthology drama series about the intersection of love and science. He also wrapped filming the Netflix movie Awake opposite Gina Rodriguez and Stowaway with Anna Kendrick and Toni Colette. Other credits include Destroyer, Race and the upcoming Drake Doremus’ movie Endings, Beginnings starring Shailene Woodley.
Additionally, Anderson and his brother Stephan James are co-founders of BLACK, an acronym for Building a Legacy in Acting Cinema and Knowledge. BLACK’s initiative is to mentor the younger generation of filmmakers and to change lives through the arts. The foundation is Toronto based and annually hosts The BLACK Ball during the Toronto International Film Festival at the TIFF Lightbox.
Anderson is represented by CAA, Oscars Abrams Zimel + Associates and Mosaic. Canto is repped by UTA, Management 360 and Miloknay Weiner.
Bruised is produced by Basil Iwanyk, Brad Feinstein, Erica Lee, Linda Gottlieb and Guymon Casady.