This week I had the unique opportunity to attend the red carpet premiere and viewing of the up and coming movie American Wrestler – The Wizard, which was held at the Regal LA Live Stadium in the heart of Los Angeles. My experience attending this great event was exciting, filled with enthusiasm, and among other things a gathering of some of Hollywood’s elite such as Academy Award winning actor Jon Voight and William Fichtner, each playing a starring role in the movie. Intertwined in the large crowd were many notable and accomplished wrestlers such as UFC Champion and actor Randy Couture, Adam Tirapelle (NCAA Champion), and a large contingent of former teammates, friends, and coaches of Producer and Actor Ali Afshar, including those from Casa Grande High School and the North Coast Section area of California. In addition, two-time Women’s World medalist and Olympic Coach Afsoon Johnston, Sally Roberts (World medalist), as well as long time National Wrestling Hall-of-Fame announcer Sandy Stevens were among this great group brought together for the movie premiere. Even Frank Jasper, who played the elite wrestler Brian Shute in the 1985 classic movie Vision Quest, was in attendance.
After a few days to absorb my great experience, I am able to summarize this movie in a concise series of words; not only is American Wrestler – The Wizard a great storyline, the plot will keep you engaged as it progresses in a series of interrelated experiences based on true events of an Iranian immigrant wrestler from Northern California, Ali Afshar.
My first red carpet movie premiere experience is one to remember. Prior to viewing the American Wrestler, I did not know what to expect, but by movies end, I was very impressed and came out thinking, “what a great story.” I truly believe this film will reach out to a broader audience than just that of the wrestling community. On a final note, I want to extend my thanks to Ali Afshar for inviting me, along with many from the California wrestling community and abroad to come together and share this experience. It’s a must see movie.
Being released by Warner Bros, American Wrestler – The Wizard will be shown at select cinemas throughout the country on Wednesday, May 3rd only. To view whether this film is being shown in your area, as well as purchasing tickets early, go to Fandago at http://www.fandango.com.