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Born a Champion

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Born a Champion
Directed byAlex Ranarivelo
Produced by
  • Ali Afshar
  • Paul J. Alessi
  • Kevin Asbell
  • Daniel Aspromonte
  • Sean Patrick Flanery
  • George Kosturos
  • Forrest Lucas
  • Ava Rettke
Written by
  • Sean Patrick Flanery
  • Alex Ranarivelo
  • Sean Patrick Flanery
  • Dennis Quaid
  • Katrina Bowden
Music byAustin Wintory
CinematographyReuben Steinberg
Edited byBrett Hedlund
  • ESX Entertainment
  • Forrest Films
Distributed by
  • Lionsgate Home Entertainment
  • Red Sea Media
Release date
  • January 22, 2021 (2021-01-22) (United States)
Running time
112 minutes

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Born a Champion is a 2021 American martial arts drama directed by Alex Ranarivelo and written by Sean Patrick Flanery and Ranarivelo. It stars Flanery, Dennis Quaid and Katrina Bowden. The film also features mixed martial arts fighter Edson Barboza, with appearances by Renzo Gracie and Mickey Gall.[1][2]


Mickey Kelley, one of the first American black belts in Brazilian jiu-jitsu, gets pulled away from everything he loves and into an unsanctioned MMA tournament.


  • Sean Patrick Flanery as Mickey Kelley
  • Katrina Bowden as Layla
  • Dennis Quaid as Mason
  • Maurice Compte as Rosco
  • Currie Graham as Burchman
  • Costas Mandylor as Dimitris
  • Reno Wilson as Terry Pittman
  • Ali Afshar as The Sheik
  • Edson Barboza as Marco Blaine


Forrest Films announced their intent to film Born a Champion, then titled Mickey Kelley, in July 2019. Alex Ranarivelo was named as the director and actors Sean Patrick Flanery, Katrina Bowden, and Dennis Quaid were also announced as some of the film's central characters. Flanery also served as one of the film's producers and co-wrote the script alongside Ranarivelo.[3]


Filming took place in Petaluma, California during the summer of 2019 and wrapped in August of the same year.[4][5]


The film was released for limited release in select theaters in the United States on January 22, 2021 and be available via video on demand the same day.[6] It will be released on Blu-ray and DVD on January 26, 2021.[7]


  1. Cruz, Guilherme. "Trailers, release date revealed for 'Born a Champion,' movie starring UFC fighter Edson Barboza". MMAFighting.com. Retrieved 18 December 2020.
  2. Clements, Averi. "Jiu-Jitsu Black Belt Sean Patrick Flanery Stars In Upcoming MMA Movie "Born A Champion"". Jiu-Jitsu Times. Retrieved 18 December 2020.
  3. Wiseman, Andreas (2019-07-16). "Mixed Martial Arts Pic 'Mickey Kelley' To Star Sean Patrick Flanery, Katrina Bowden, Dennis Quaid & MMA Fighters Renzo Grazie, Edson Barboza & Mickey Gall". Deadline. Retrieved 2021-01-05. Unknown parameter |url-status= ignored (help)
  4. "Local Hollywood director wraps up latest Petaluma movie with Dennis Quaid in supporting role". Petaluma Argus-Courier. 2019-08-08. Retrieved 2021-01-05.
  5. "July 11 Arts and Entertainment Source: Movie producer returns to home Petaluma". Times-Herald. 2019-07-09. Retrieved 2021-01-05.
  6. Renner, Brian. "Everything You Need to Know About Born A Champion Movie". movieinsider.com. Retrieved 18 December 2020.
  7. Cranswick, Amie. "Sean Patrick Flanery, Dennis Quaid and Katrina Bowden star in trailer for Born a Champion". Flickering Myth. Retrieved 18 December 2020.

External links[edit]

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