This Day in Rasslin’ History: Beyond the Mat

If you’ve never seen Beyond the Mat, you really need to get that fixed.  Released in American theaters on this date eleven years ago, Beyond the Mat is the best documentary about professional wrestling ever to be shot.  The movie primarily focuses on Mick Foley, Terry Funk, and Jake Roberts, an especially interesting dynamic because each member of the trio are at extremely different stages of their lives.  Foley is enjoying the prime of his career, his WWE World Title run; Funk is rapidly aging and contemplating retirement; Roberts is at rock bottom, struggling with cocaine addiction and an estranged family.

After seeing the film, Vince McMahon had all advertisements for it pulled from WWE programming.  He claimed it was because other wrestling companies, namely ECW, were promoted in it, although it’s a common belief that he didn’t appreciate the candid look into the seedy side of the wrestling business it gave viewers.  From of his disapproval, a tag line for the documentary was conceived: The Movie Vince McMahon Didn’t Want You to See. See it.

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