LAS VEGAS – It’s the so-called Fight of the Century, so can the celebrities be far behind?
Academy award-winning actors Leonardo Dicaprio and Denzel Washington are among those expected to be at ringside when Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather Jr. finally get together in the ring for the unified world welterweight championship this Saturday (Sunday, Manila time) at the MGM Grand.
The two were among the Hollywood stars Top Rank promoter Bob Arum mentioned when asked about the star power expected to lend further glamor to a fight that will go down as the biggest and richest fight ever in boxing history.
“You can’t believe the VIPs coming,” said Arum on Wednesday. “There’ll be as many celebrities in Hollywood at the fight as there are during the Academy Awards.”
Top Rank publicist Ricardo Jimenez said a celebrity list will be provided for the media by Friday, although stars who visited Pacquiao while holding training camp at the Wild Card gym in Hollywood such as Mark Wahlberg, Sylvester Stallone, Robert Duvall, Liam Neeson, and Keanu Reeves are likely to be in attendance.
“Every name that you can imagine,” said Arum. “What HBO did was it brought about US$3 million worth of tickets from us to bring in celebrities. And Showtime is doing the same thing.”
In the local front, actor Richard Gutierrez, Sarah Lahbati, Cesar Montano, and Bayani Agbayani are among those coming over, along with Senators Ralph Recto and Sonny Angara.