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"Muhammad Ali's Greatest Fight" is an original HBO TV movie starring Academy Award winner Christopher Plummer ("Beginners"), Academy Award nominee Frank Langella ("Frost/Nixon") and Benjamin Walker ("Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter").

Famous for both his signature shuffle and verbal sparring, boxer Cassius Clay quickly rose to fame in the '60s, becoming the world's best-known athlete — and eventually its most controversial. After joining the Nation of Islam and adopting the name Muhammad Ali, he was widely denounced for refusing to be drafted into the U.S. military, based on his religious opposition to the Vietnam War. Stripped of his title and banned from the sport, the self-proclaimed "Greatest" lost nearly four years of his boxing prime to legal battles. In 1971, his case for being a conscientious objector eventually reached the United States Supreme Court, rooted by tradition and conservative ideals with Nixon-appointed Chief Justice Warren E. Burger at its helm.

The film goes behind the closed doors of the United States Supreme Court as its nine justices — Chief Justice Warren E. Burger (Frank Langella), Hugo Black (Fritz Weaver), William O. Douglas (Harris Yulin), John Harlan II (Christopher Plummer), William Brennan, Jr. (Peter Gerety), Potter Stewart (Barry Levinson), Byron "Whizzer" White (John Bedford Lloyd), Thurgood Marshall (Danny Glover) and Harry Blackmun (Ed Begley, Jr.) — decide the outcome of Muhammad Ali's landmark appeal. Justice Harlan, a respected jurist with 15 years on the court, finds himself at odds with the status quo after his perspective is challenged by the contemporary ideals of his new clerk, Kevin Connolly (Benjamin Walker). The film explores the intricate politics behind these historic decisions in a time of rapid social and cultural transformation in the American landscape.

"Muhammad Ali's Greatest Fight" is an HBO Films presentation in association with SAF Films West that is directed by Academy Award nominee Stephen Frears ("The Queen") from a script by Shawn Slovo ("A World Apart"); and executive produced by Emmy winner Frank Doelger (HBO's "Game of Thrones" and "The Gathering Storm"), Emmy winner Tracey Scoffield (HBO's "The Gathering Storm"), Jonathan Cameron and Stephen Frears.

'Muhammad Ali's Greatest Fight': Christopher Plummer isn't all business
TV review: 'Muhammad Ali's Greatest Fight' stays out of the ring
TV Review: 'Muhammad Ali's Greatest Fight'


Network: HBO
Genre: Drama
Premiere Date: October 5, 2013
Production Companies:
HBO Films
SAF Films West

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"Muhammad Ali's Greatest Fight" (TV movie) cast members Christopher Plummer and Frank Langella Christopher Plummer and Frank Langella Star in 'Muhammad Ali's Greatest Fight' — Directed by Stephen Frears, the new HBO original movie goes behind the closed doors of the United States Supreme Court as it considers the famous boxer's landmark appeal over being a conscientious objector and refusing to be drafted to the Vietnam War. Read more...

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