- Rated: Unrated
- Closed captioning available
- Run Time: 1 hours, 48 minutes
- Video: Color
- Released: March 23, 2004
- Originally Released: 1999
- Label: Universal Studios
- Encoding: Region 1 (USA & Canada)
- Packaging: Keep Case
- Single Side - Dual Layer
- Director's Cut
- Special Edition
- Aspect Ratio: Full Frame - 1.33
- Dolby Surround Sound - English
- Additional Release Material:
- Featurette: "Dinner with the Guys"
- Trailers: Theatrical Trailer
- Audio Commentary:
- Jesse "The Body" Ventura, Mick "Mankind" Foley - Stars, Barry Blaustein - Director
- Terry Funk - Star, Barry Blaustein - Director
- "On My Life in Wrestling and "The Royal Rumble" - Mick Foley - Star
- Production Notes
- Cast and Filmmakers
Performers, Cast and Crew:
"...An emotional and evocative document of the professional wrestling scene....A gently and genuinely observed film..."
Sight and Sound - 09/01/2000
"...There is something moving, challenging and surprising about these men's lives..."
Premiere - 10/01/2000
"...Spirited....[Wrestling] nonfans will be simultaneously appalled and fascinated..." -- 3 out of 5 stars -- A Satisfying Rental
Box Office - 04/01/2000
"...BEYOND THE MAT is fun for the fans who scour the Internet for the latest gossip and rumors, and perhaps even a little enlightening for non-fans..."
Los Angeles Times - 10/22/1999
"...BEYOND THE MAT connects the antics of professional wrestlers with their lives out of the ring with such compassion, humor and perception that the result is utterly captivating..."
Chicago Sun-Times - 03/17/2000
"...Roberts opens up in an extraordinary way to the camera....It has a hypnotic quality..."
Filmmaker Barry W. Blaustein takes a look at the professional wrestling game at every level, from the hopeful, perhaps deluded beginners who spend their money on wrestling schools, to the lower levels of the profession, to the pinnacle of wrestling success: national fame in the WWF. Particularly fascinating are Blaustein's examinations of Jake "The Snake" Roberts and Mick "Mankind" Foley. Roberts was once a superstar in the WWF, but evidently drugs and alcohol destroyed his career, and left him a broken and bitter man, wrestling on the outer reaches of the pro circuit. In a poignant scene, Blaustein captures a painful reunion between Roberts and his adult daughter. Foley, on the other hand, is a tremendous success in the WWF and a devoted husband and father. But the violence of his profession still threatens to tear his family apart. Blaustein makes no bones about his perspective in making his film. He's a wrestling fan. That said, the film offers an honest view of the outrageous and controversial world of professional wrestling. Though the outcomes of matches are usually predetermined making it a different kind of sport, pro wrestling is certainly a demanding and brutal way of life.
Professional Wrestling |
Sports Heroes / Legends / Inspirations |
Theatrical Release |
- Theatrical Release: October 22, 1999 (NY/LA Oscar Engagement).
March 3, 2000 (NY/LA/Memphis/Charlotte, NC)
March 17, 2000 (Wider)
- The film was shot on location in Philadelphia, Los Angeles, Amarillo, Nashua, Minneapolis, Sacramento, Stamford, Hayward, and Orlando.
- Blaustein, along with his partner, David Sheffield, has written for Eddie Murphy, beginning on Saturday Night Live, and continuing with the feature films COMING TO AMERICA, BOOMERANG, THE NUTTY PROFESSOR, and THE NUTTY PROFESSOR II: THE KLUMPS.
- Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, plays the Scorpion King in THE MUMMY RETURNS.
A clip of HANNAH AND HER SISTERS is shown in the film. Woody Allen and producer JEAN DOUMANIAN are thanked in the credits.
- Vince McMahon would not allow ads for the film to be shown during his WWF wrestling programs. Producer Ron Howard (APOLLO 13) accused McMahon of trying to hamper the film because, Howard said, McMahon had asked to invest in the film and had been rebuked.
- Jerome "New Jack" Young faced criminal charges for stabbing an opponent in the head with a fork during an ECW match. More recently, due to a serious injury, the wrestler had to have his ankle reconstructed, and an artificial heel put in.
- Many wrestlers try several different "gimmicks," sometimes in several different wrestling organizations, before finding one that captures the imagination of fans.
- Mick Foley is one of few professional wrestlers that has wrestled under several different pseudonyms during the same time period, switching back and forth freely between his popular characters, the deranged "Mankind," the prickly "Cactus Jack," and a hippie-like character, "Dude Love."