The R&B singer is playing the legendary boxer in upcoming movie ‘Hands of Stone’ which is a biopic about Leonard’s most famous opponent, Hall of Fame pugilist Roberto Durán.
Usher has revealed Leonard got him in the ring to show him the basics of the fight game and the two have become almost as close as “brothers”.
Speaking in issue 19 FAULT Magazine, Usher said: “I spent time with him in Atlanta, and in Los Angeles. We boxed together; we chilled. He became a great friend of mine, almost like a brother to me.”
Usher stars in the movie with Édgar Ramírez – who plays Duran – and Robert De Niro, who portrays Duran’s trainer Ray Arcel.
The pop star is pleased to have landed the role as he wants to diversify his career, something that was one of his main motivations for accepting a position as a coach on ‘The Voice’ USA.
Usher – whose new single ‘She Came to Give it to You’ is out on September 28 – said: “Part of the reason why I did ‘The Voice’ was so people would get a chance to get a different perception of me.”
Speaking about what he learnt on the show, he added: “The more I know about life, the more I know about people, the greater the person I am, the more understanding I have about how to make music and how to do things that will grow us as people.”
The singer was photographed by Sinisha Nisevic for FAULT magazine (www.fault-magazine.com/issues) and was styled by Sammy and Judy (aka The Kids).