Posts Tagged ‘Pete McCormack’

SilverDocs 2009: Interview With Facing Ali Director Pete McCormack


Joe Frazier, one of the many that faced Ali

This morning I had the pleasure of talking with Pete McCormack, director of Facing Ali, a special feature last night at SilverDocs.

The bio piece on Muhammad Ali was done in a very unique way that I haven’t seen before. The entire piece tells the story of the famed boxer not through his words- but the words and stories of the people he fought. McCormack interviewed ten boxers that fought Ali throughout his career, each person bringing insight into the boxer dubbed, “The Greatest.” Each boxer tells not only his story and his encounter with Ali, but how their lives have changed because of it.

In a phone interview with McCormack, he tells me about his approach on adapting the book that the film is based on. McCormack included additional boxers that weren’t profiled originally (like Leon Spinks)  in order to create a complete time line that encompasses Ali’s entire boxing career.

“I used them as a conversation in the piece,” McCormack describes. ” On dealing with Ali’s current battle with Parkinson’s disease McCormack didn’t have any trouble bringing the subject up with his opponents because of the respect Ali has earned with his fighters. “They felt compassion for him… and he’s also changed their lives…” McCormack also reveals that he’s not only a film maker but he also dabbles in music and writing as well.

Facing Ali
Showing at AFI SilverDocs
Monday June 22nd, 8:00 PM
AFI Silver Theater

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