Oscar De La Hoya Documentary on HBO Looks Intriguing



Oscar De La Hoya Documentary on HBO Looks Intriguing

Oscar De La Hoya is one of those of a dwindling breed, boxers known outside their realm. Non boxing sports fans no doubt were aware of “The Golden Boy” as he progressed from fighting pride of East LA to the Olympics, to being a persistent top draw in the post Mike Tyson pro boxing era.

The awareness, in more years, often came about via less glamorous deeds.

He’s made no secret of some outside the ring struggles which have threatened at times to over shadow Oscars’ stellar resume bullet points.

Oscar de la Hoya

Oscar De La Hoya has had heavy ups and downs in his life. In this project, he offers intel into why he’s struggled at some stations in life

With the two part documentary “The Golden Boy” hitting platforms Monday, courtesy HBO, it looks like the pugilism icon is offering soul-deep insights into his psyche, which he admits has made living, period, hard in spots.

The doc is directed by filmmaker Fernando Villena (HBO’s “Dear Rider” and “Any One of Us”), and it debuts MONDAY, JULY 24 (9:00 p.m. ET/PT), followed by part 2 on July 25 at the same time on HBO.

The episodes will be available to stream on Max beginning July 24 at 9 p.m. ET/PT.

THE GOLDEN BOY had its world premiere at the 2023 Tribeca Festival, for the record.

Here is a synopsis, from the production:

 As a young man, Oscar De La Hoya was an Olympic boxing gold medalist, a multi-world title-winning professional boxer, a hometown hero and a role model to his Mexican-American community in East Los Angeles. Nicknamed “The Golden Boy,” De La Hoya, with his good looks, electric charisma, and heartfelt story of winning Olympic gold for his dying mother, rocketed to national prominence as a superstar both in and outside the ring. Yet, all was not what it appeared to be behind that polished facade.

Oscar De La Hoya Offers Insights Into Struggles

Yes, I was surprised to see one of the names of persons in this effort.

“Milana Dravnel,” if you don’t know the name, Google it. Ok, looks like we’re getting legit reality from this flick, hopefully.

The publicity department shares that the doc will be “Told in De La Hoya’s own words through a series of candid interviews with him and those closest to him, and featuring rare archival footage, THE GOLDEN BOY peels back the layers of this celebrated yet complicated figure, exploring his triumphs and turmoil to reveal a man struggling to come to terms with lifelong demons and the impossible burden of a nickname he couldn’t live up to.”

Oscar De La Hoya is a character, I often enjoy his occasionally off beat or off kilter antics.

Yeah, he can make you cringe. Pretty sure this doc will help us better understand where some of his iffier decision making stems from.

Oscar de la hoya

Oscar De La Hoya is 50, no longer The Golden Boy. Unresolved childhood trauma makes him feel like he is a little boy, adrift… and he’s finding that the battle to be emotionally well is harder than the boxing was.

Part I
Debut date: MONDAY, JULY 24 (9:00 p.m. ET/PT)
Part I details the rise of the young boxing phenom from East Los Angeles, whose hardscrabble upbringing and story of a promise to his dying mother while preparing for the Olympics make him a media sensation.

As a professional, Oscar De La Hoya soon becomes a bona fide superstar, winning multiple world titles and earning recognition as one of the best fighters in the world. Outside the ring, De La Hoya’s charm and crossover appeal cement his place in popular culture.

Accolades, Titles, Purses… Never Enough

But despite his numerous accolades and immense popularity, the turmoil lurking beneath the surface threatens to implode his carefully crafted public persona.

Part II
Debut date: TUESDAY, JULY 25 (9:00 p.m. ET/PT)
Part II chronicles the growth of Oscar De La Hoya’s boxing empire with the founding of Golden Boy Promotions as well as his foray into entertainment with the launch of an album of Latin pop music.

But his self-destructive behavior continues to damage his public image and throw his personal life into disarray.

Oscar de la Hoya

“Who the f—k am I,” Oscar De La Hoya asks of himself in the 2-part doc

As De La Hoya finally begins to take stock of his life and relationships, he looks to find forgiveness for the damage left in his wake.

Here is a list of “Featured Participants:”

Joel De La Hoya Sr., sister Cecilia De La Hoya, brother Joel De La Hoya Jr., children Atiana De La Hoya, Jacob De La Hoya, Devon De La Hoya, former fiancée Shanna Moakler, childhood friend/business partner Eric Gomez, former trainer Jesus Rivero, boxing promoter Bob Arum, boxing legend Bernard Hopkins, and his former mistress Milana Dravnel.

Credits: HBO Sports Documentaries presents An Unrealistic Ideas Production in association with ViaMar Productions and Universal Television Alternative Studio (UTAS).

Directed by Fernando Villena; executive produced by Mark Wahlberg, Stephen Levinson, Archie Gips, Mario Lopez, Jeffrey Stearns, David Wendell.

For HBO: executive producers, Nancy Abraham, Lisa Heller, and Bentley Weiner; coordinating producer, Abtin Motia.

My Three Cents: I identify with Oscar De La Hoya, in some ways. I know the feeling of wanting the thoughts in my head, spurred by the pain of feeling, to change, and reaching for various means to do that.

He’s looked at times to me like a guy who may be destined to not totally figure out how to slow the wheels in his head so the sound doesn't drive him crazy.

My dad told me, in 1995, when I was in a dark soul searching period, that it seemed to him like I would want to grapple with my worries as a spiritual matter. That might apply to Oscar, too.

Lots of it, my research has shown, involves acceptance. Of the ways of the world, of oneself. It’s an ongoing challenge, yes, a hard fight.

Founder/editor Michael Woods got addicted to boxing in 1990, when Buster Douglas shocked the world with his demolition of the then-impregnable Mike Tyson. The Brooklyn-based journalist has covered the sport since for ESPN The Magazine,, Bad Left Hook and RING. His journalism career started with NY Newsday in 1999. Michael Woods is also an accomplished blow by blow and color man, having done work for Top Rank, DiBella Entertainment, EPIX, and for Facebook Fightnight Live, since 2017.