The Lion of Calanda | Luis Buñuel boxing

Luis Buñuel boxing at the Residencia de Estudiantes, Madrid, 1919

Luis Buñuel was a boxer as well as an actor. When he'd beaten the toughest boy in the village, he arranged a series of boxing matches and gave himself the title of “the Lion of Calanda.”

''My passion for sports began at the Residencia, where every morning, in shorts and bare feet, I ran on a track that belonged to the cavalry of the civil guard. I organized the first interscholastic track and field teams at the university and even became an amateur boxer. (Of my two matches, one was won by default because my opponent never showed up, the other lost on points in the fifth round for lack of what they called "combativity." If the truth be known, I spent the entire five rounds worrying about how to protect my face.)

I loved all forms of exercise; one day I even managed to climb the facade of the Residencia. The muscles I developed during that period remained throughout most of my life; in fact, I still have a hard stomach. I remember toughening up my stomach muscles by lying on my back and having my friends jump up and down on me. My other specialty was arm wrestling; well into a "respectable" middle age, I was still fighting tournaments on bar and restaurant tables.''

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