In 1979, director Franco Zeffirelli remade a 1931 Oscar-winning film called The Champ, about a washed-up boxer trying to mount a comeback in the ring. Zeffirelli’s version got tepid reviews. The Rotten Tomatoes website gives it only a 38 percent approval rating. But The Champ did succeed in launching the acting career of 9-year-old Ricky Schroder, who was cast as the son of the boxer. At the movie’s climax, the boxer, played by Jon Voight, dies in front of his young son. “Champ, wake up!” sobs an inconsolable T.J., played by Schroder. The performance would win him a Golden Globe Award.
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