Champions Forever: Ali – The Lost Interviews – Coming to DVD
LOS ANGELES – September 15, 2009 — Experience Ali on Ali, for the final time, in the revealing new documentary, Champions Forever: Ali – The Lost Interviews.
Forgotten in a vault for nearly 20 years, interviews with Muhammad Ali just prior to his increasing debilitation have been rediscovered and will now be seen by the public for the first time. In his last known meaningful interviews, one of the world’s most admired and recognizable figures talks about the purpose of his life and the end of his life, and reveals how he wants to be remembered and why.
The first 30 minutes of the 140-minute DVD Champions Forever: Ali – The Lost Interviews (Image Entertainment/October 20, 2009), captures “The Greatest of All Time” in never-before-seen footage and interviews taken at his Los Angeles home, his Michigan compound and at Johnny Taco’s Las Vegas gym with heavyweight champs Joe Frazier, George Foreman, Larry Holmes and Ken Norton. The latter occasion marked the first and only time all five champions, all of whom fought Ali, had been interviewed together.
The newly released footage precedes the original 1990 Champions Forever film, which is otherwise no longer available, that featured baseball star Reggie Jackson as the interviewer.
Acclaimed as one of the best boxing documentaries in history, Champions Forever is filled with thrilling highlights from more than 30 of the greatest bouts of all time, from Ali’s defeat of Sonny Liston to Mike Tyson’s victory over Larry Holmes, from “The Fight Of The Century” between undefeated champs Ali and Frazier to their third and final meeting in the “Thrilla In Manila.”
Throughout the film, interviews uncover the men behind the legends as they reveal their innermost thoughts about their lives, their careers and each other. Also seen is “Dinner With The Champs,” a once-in-a-lifetime get-together hosted by Jackson.
The story behind the filming of Champions Forever is as improbable as that of getting the champs together in one room. In 1988, Craig Glazer was incarcerated in federal prison at Lompoc, California, when he met a fellow inmate who was developing the film. Glazer was offered a production job on the project–if and when he was released from prison. Once free, Glazer not only worked on the documentary, including interviewing the fighters, but eventually purchased the film’s rights (with producer Ron Hamady) from Ed Masry, made famous as the attorney portrayed in Erin Brockovich and the lawyer for Glazer’s former fellow inmate who was by then on the run from the law.
That fascinating tale was most recently told in the 2008 true crime autobiography The King of Sting: the Amazing True Story of a Modern American Outlaw by Craig Glazer with Sal Manna. The King of Sting has now been optioned for a major motion picture by producer Eric Eisner, with a script penned by Dan Gordon of The Hurricane fame, story of boxer Rubin “Hurricane” Carter).
For review copies of Champions Forever: Ali – The Lost Interviews or interview opportunities with producer Craig Glazer, please contact: Jeff Abraham at Jonas Public Relations at (310) 656-3355 or [email protected]