The Story of Furious Pete to Debut at Hot Docs

Published: March 28th 2010

Furious Pete in action
Pic: G. I. Productions
The Story of Furious Pete official poster
Pic: G. I. Productions
Producer Igal Hecht
Pic: G. I. Productions

Toronto filmmaker George Tsioutsioulas teamed up with Israeli documentary filmmaker Igal Hecht to unearth an amazing local story about Pete Czerwinski, also known as "Furious Pete."


Some few years ago, Czerwinski was hospitalized for an eating disorder not commonly linked to men: anorexia. Having dropped down to a frail 120 pounds with death at his door, Czerwinski pulled through, perhaps replacing one addiction with another.


From the extreme of not eating, to becoming a record-breaking competitive eater consuming 46 latkes in eight minutes, The Story of Furious Pete delves into Czerwinski's life in the world of competitive eating.


Shalom Life chatted with the filmmakers about their project and being accepted to the Hot Docs Film Festival.


You both have quite successful careers independently. Why have you decided to join forces?


George Tsioutsioulas: In life I believe in happy accidents. Igal and I were both working for the same production company; I was producing and hosting a travel series called The Hospitality Guide and he was editing a show called Nite Life (which ironically is the name of a show that I hosted on Omni TV for 8 years). I don't think we talked much during that time because our schedules were different, but afterwards when we both went on to other things I got an email from him telling me about this web-based series he was working on called He said they needed a host so after I got the job, that's when we got to know each other better and I realized that he is just as crazy as I am when it comes to wanting to do everything! I knew it would be a good fit, so we started discussing different projects that we could work on together and here are we are today.


Igal Hecht: Once we realized that we were both crazy and passionate about producing content, it was a natural fit.  George brings so much to the table and we both started thinking about projects.  Our first venture was out in LA and then a few months later came Pete. To be honest, it was a wonderful break from the intense Jewish/Israel content I've dealt with for over ten years now.  It also gave me an opportunity to showcase my skills and creativity with different content.


Looking at your resumes, your projects are quite different. As partners, how do you approach each project?


George: Whatever I am working on, I need be excited about it. If the project I'm working on is not interesting or compelling to me, then how is anybody else going to get excited over it? That's always been my approach and it's a simple one: love what you do and it's not work. With regards to the types of projects that Igal and I are gravitating towards these days, I think we've rubbed off on each other. I've been lucky enough to have some very cool career highs up until this point, but I have to say that producing and directing our latest documentary The Story of Furious Pete is easily one of the greatest things I've ever done. I'm very excited to share it with everybody and I'm proud to announce that it has been selected to have its world premiere at Hot Docs 2010, the biggest documentary film festival in the world!


Related articles: (film, documentary, furious, pete, food, anorexia)

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