DVD Collection #28: Jennifer Garner vs. Gabrielle Union (10 Decisive Finishes) by Archer

This DVD was privately produced some years ago by independent producer Edward M. Fillmore and has only now become available. The original tape was part of a lot purchased at auction and has been digitally re-mastered for this DVD.

Included is a newly recorded commentary track with Jennifer Garner being interviewed by FCBA boxing beat writer Skip Tracey of Archer News. (Gabrielle Union was out of the country shooting a film and was unavailable. She said she would have loved to have included her own commentary as a counterpoint to Jen’s own “…obviously biased” reaction.) Skip met with Jennifer Garner in the conference room at her stable, Foxfire Boxing.

"You asked about me boxing Gabrielle Union back in the 1990's," Jen said. "I had heard about her being booked to fight Jennifer Lopez this weekend and I remembered those days. I did some looking around and found something that brought it all back."

"So you did fight her back before you came to the FCBA?"

"Long before...back in the mid-90's we were something else in the ring, but nothing happened. When she finally came to the FCBA in 2003 and beat Brigette Wilson. I thought for sure she'd want me next, but nothing happened. Whether it was the HISC suits or her people I don't know, but she was never matched with me or anybody else in the FCBA. She preferred the small venues and I guess she went back there."

"You did box with her then?"

"Oh, we boxed, we wrestled; even did La Conquista down in Acapulco. We were the same age - both born in '72. I'm only 8 months older but I’m an inch or two taller. We were a great contrast in every way and though we weren't exactly polished veterans, we put on a good match. Sometimes in a ring but usually in an 'apartment' or a beach setting."

"You got along? I mean, personally?"

"Oh, we weren't exactly best friends, we usually only saw each other in the ring, but we had this connection. Separately, we were just two struggling 'on the verge' young fighters. There are always lots of them but put us together and it was like a fire igniting. Now I've had some intense rivalries in the FCBA - Charlize, Kelly, Jessica, and others - but nothing like what I had with Gaby. The joke is: I don't think I was that good…at least, not by my current standards."

"Unpolished?" Skip asked.

"That would be putting it politely. I was everything you shouldn't be. I'd come charging out; swinging for the knockout. I swear, you could have lit up all of Southern California from the energy of all my missed punches. Gaby would duck and jab me senseless. You'd think that would be dull to watch, but people seemed to love it. Of course, I eventually wised up and stopped brawling. Well, mostly I stopped; people probably don't think so, but I'm a brawler at heart. I just control it better now."

"So what was it you found that brought it all back?" Skip asked

"I was thinking about her…Gaby…when I saw that old VHS. It was promo tape that our promoter a guy named 'Fast Eddie Fillmore' made to promote us. Sort of a 'best finishes'. Want to see us in action? This is a mockup of the proposed DVD cover."

"Sweet!" Skip said - admiring the photos of a young Jennifer and young Gabrielle in tiny bikini’s.

"Eddie knew what sold tickets," Jen said with a sheepish smile. “And it wasn't our brilliant boxing technique.”

"Natch!" Skip exclaimed. “Two beautiful girls in skimpy outfits sweating and struggling for supremacy. What more could a red-blooded boy ask for!”



There are ten ‘decisive rounds’ on the tape from bouts during the period of two years from early 1995 to mid to late 97...

Scene 1: (Penthouse house setting. Ritzy crowd glimpsed in the background). Young Gabrielle and Young Jenny, Gabrielle in a black bikini, Jenny in red. Jen, despite looking busted up and ragged, is doggedly going after Gaby with a wide sweeping punches, that don't connect nearly enough, Then they fall into toe-to-toe body busting action. They blaze away until suddenly, Jen freezes and, as Gaby rams home the leather, melts straight down ending up in a heap at Gaby's feet.

("Like, I said, I was way too much a brawler when I started out," Jen told Skip with a rueful sigh).

Scene 2: (Garden of an estate). Jen is red bikini vs. Gabrielle in purple. Looks like Jen has discovered the jab and the joys of fast footwork. She's doing a good job, circling Gabrielle and pounding away. Good shot to the sternum stuns Union and a lightning last haymaker right to the chin drops her on her buns. Gaby gets up, but she's weaving and the ref stops the fight. Jen is all beaming dimpled happiness while Gaby shakes her head in dismay.

("First time I beat her," Jen says savoring the memory.)

Scene 3. (Atual boxing ring at some tony LA gym). Gaby in red one-piece has Jen in a white one-piece up against the ropes and she pumping leather into Garner's torso like a rivet gun. Jen's knees buckle but she doesn't go down. Not easy to tell from angle of camera, but Jen whispers: ""She was holding me up. Guess she was still sore about losing that garden fight". Finally, with ref getting close to stoppage, Gaby simply stops punching and steps back. Jen slides down the ropes and comes to rest in a sitting position, arms flopped to her side, gloves on the canvas. Fight is halted and Gaby's arm raised as crowd in expensive exercise gear applauds.

Scene 4. (Penthouse living room). What th--?! No contrast in styles this time. Both Gaby and Jen are brawling away like it's Pier 6. Jen's in black lace bra and panties; Gaby in red lace undies. Both are already busted up, but they are really having at one another. Both nail each other with near simultaneous rights, Jen staggers around on drunken legs, but stays up. Gaby slowly folds to her knees and then pitches forward on her face, out cold.

("Don't ask me why we were both brawling. It just sort of happened. It could have gone either way, but I was the one left standing," Jen said quietly).

Scene 5. (Looks like a beach. Just a roped off ring with guests seated in chairs around the sides.) Gaby's in a yellow bikini. Jen's in a sky blue one. Strategy returns despite the sandy setting. Gaby concentrating on Garner's jaw with shot after shot, though Jen keeps jabbing back hard to Union's glistening body. Then Jen's legs give a shiver. Gaby evidently sees the shiver and unleashes a couple of haymaker uppercuts. Jen's head snaps back and she just keeps right on going, landing on the sand, arms spread out wide and clearly done. Ref steps in to raise Gaby's arm as crowd raises their icy drink glasses in salute.

("Got me that time-got me really good," Jen sighs as camera zooms in on her slumbering face).

Scene 6: (A different beach and a bigger crowd in bleachers. Beach volleyball court?)

("Our first beach fight got a lot of people talking, so 'Fast Eddie' got us into a bigger venue, nobody could take quicker advantage of a suddenly hot pairing that Eddie," Jen explained with a smile).

Jen is in a leopard print bikini. Gaby's in a tiger print. Same sort of strategic battle, but this time Jen's ab attack is taking a toll on Gaby and she's wincing, her guard dropping down. Jen blasts in a thunderclap into the point of Gaby's chin. Gaby topples to her right and lands hard on the sand. She tries to rise, but can only to get to all fours as the count reaches ten.

Scene 7: (Yet another beach. Bigger bleachers, bigger crowd).

("We were really packing them in after the first two," Jen commented).

Gaby is in a menacing blood red bikini. Jen's in zebra print bikini. Gaby's plainly out for blood this time. With a fiercely determined look on her face, Gaby is relentlessly closing in on an obviously hurt Jen, who nevertheless, fights back with snarling desperation. Gaby grimly absorbs Jen's counterpunches and thunders back with left and rights combos to the head. Jen's head whipped back and forth, then she just corkscrews onto her face. Gaby gives her fallen opponent a final fierce look and steps back as ref waves it off.

(Jen is grimly silent and Skip tactfully sticks to his notes).

Scene 8: (Back inside a penthouse for this one). Gaby in a white lace chemise and panties battles Jen in red lace chemise and panties. Jen really looks like she's got Gaby where she wants her, pinning her up against a wall, but Gaby puts a short hard-one into Jen's solar plexus. As Jen stumbles back, Gaby unleashes that right uppercut. Jen lifted off her feet, hits the carpet and lays there starfished. Ref rushes in to count. Jen raises her head and then falls back in deep slumber. Gaby looks very pleased with herself as she surveys the wreckage, her arms raised in victory and a well-dressed crowd cheers.

("You could get her in trouble-then BANG! You're flat on your back and it's all over." Jen says glumly.)

Scene 9: (Master bedroom Suite). Gabrielle in a sexy gold teddy and Jen is a sexy black teddy are battling it out around the suite, finally ending up on the huge king-sized bed. Jen driven to one knee as Gaby stands over her trying to rain down punches on her head and neck. Jen drives an uppercut into Gabrielle's unguarded tummy. Gaby doubles over and falls backwards against the wall at the head of the bed. Jen rockets to her feet and plows another belly-busting shot into Gaby, who folds forward and Jen swings a right haymaker into her jaw. Gaby blasted sideways lands on the edge of the bed and slides head-first off the bed landing in a puddled heap. Jen jumps up and down excitedly on the bed as the ref counts to ten.

("That one was just strange, but it was biggest take-home check I ever got from 'Fast Eddie'," Jen says, cheering up considerably).

Scene 10: (Beachside, posh Mexican coastal resort. Exclusive crowd). Gaby in red bikini with black trim; Jen in royal blue bikini with sky blue trim. Tenth round of what was plainly a battle of attrition as both fighters are battered, drenched with sweat mixed with sand from knockdowns, and suffering under the merciless sun. Yet they fall in shoulder to shoulder to pound each other, but Jen's punches more effective.

("I'd been pounding away at Gaby's arms all afternoon. It finally caught up with her, she's hitting me, but not hard enough," Jen whispered.)

Both finish the fight leaning on each other. As bell rings, they stare at each other in wonder and then listen as the decision is announced as a draw. Jen and Gaby are stunned, then hug each other as the surprised crowd cheered.

("They should have shown more of it. That was a great fight and I'm not ashamed it was a draw. We were both great that day. So it was Gaby 5-4-1 in that set and that was about our average," Jen said.)


"You can see why I’m hoping to fight her again. Mr. Fox says he'll try to get it done next month."

"You see Gabrielle at all over the years?"

"Now and then, but not boxing. Gaby's into apartment house wrestling, too."

"With you?"

Jen got that ruefully smile: "There's a reason I box more than I wrestle. I did wrestle her and she usually won. She has this military press-lifts her opponent right up over her head. It's great for the fans. Not so great for the opponent when she tosses you off. And there's her torture rack. You do not want to be wrapped around her shoulders-but that's a whole other set of story."

Skip asked, "Whatever happened to 'Fast Eddie Fillmore'?"

Jen shook her head: "He was square enough with us, but he played 'fast' with the IRS and the next thing I heard he was booking fights in Brazil. However, I have heard came back to town a while ago so maybe he settled with the feds. If he did, I'm sure he's busy signing up rookies."

"Who else did you fight in that promotion?" Skip thought to ask.

Jen thought about it. "Ally Walker, Kelly Rutherford, Jamie Luner, Marcia Cross, Daphne Zuniga. I even had one or two with Jennifer Lopez before she became 'JLo'. Most of those girls were with Melrose Place. I am sure I had some New York fights with Elisabeth Rohm, people don't seem to take Lis seriously these days, but back when we starting out she was plenty tough for me whenever I was in Manhattan. They were always looking for fresh meat and 'Fast Eddie' got us to the head of the line. Of course, I didn't win a lot, but it helped pay my rent and kept me going. It wasn't always easy, but those fights with Gabrielle helped make me into a better boxer. So when the FCBA came calling, I was ready."

"You certainly were," Skip said admiringly.