Boxing icon Muhammad Ali and his family made a rare public appearance at the Ali Center on Wednesday (October 2) in his hometown of Louisville at the U.S. Premier of ‘Muhammad Ali’s Greatest Fight,” a story about his legal battle which ended at the U.S. Supreme Court in 1971. The film debuts on the HBO cable network on October 5.
When the former boxing champion was drafted into the Vietnam War at the height of his boxing career, his principled claim to conscientious objector status on religious grounds led to a lengthy legal battle that rattled the U.S. judicial system right up to the highest court in the land. After being widely denounced for his refusal to be drafted in the U.S. military, Ali was stripped of his title, banned from the sport and lost nearly four years of his boxing prime to legal battles. Set in 1971, the film goes behind the closed doors of the United States Supreme Court as the nine Supreme Court Justices decide the outcome of Muhammad Ali’s landmark appeal.