The Story of Furious Pete to Debut at Hot Docs

Published: March 28th 2010
in Culture » Movies

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

Igal:  When it comes to projects I have to feel passionate and excited about them, as George does. I've been privileged enough over the forty plus documentaries that I have been involved with in the last ten years to work on some amazing projects. But The Story of Furious Pete is by far one of the most exciting. We both knew from the start (though George knew more than anyone else) that this is an amazing story, and by the time we were done with post and submitted the film, we knew that people are going to be amazed, grossed out and really touched by this film. That made it that much more special. In terms of my approach to films, the motto of my career is that producing is producing. The basis of all production is the same. The main thing for me is having an amazing team to work with, where creativity is shared to create a brilliant film. In that sense George and myself are not that different. We are both passionate about the project, we both have high expectations of ourselves and everyone involved and we want to continue to produce compelling work that will entertain and inform at the same time, so working on The Story of Furious Pete was very easy.


As a collective, you produced Furious Pete -- again, a topic outside of your resume. How did this project come to you?


George: When I was hosting and producing my travel series The Hospitality Guide, I was travelling all over the world. One of the 'exotic' destinations I got to visit was Buffalo NY during their Buffalo Wing Festival, which is a two day festival devoted to people who really, really love wings. While I was there I got to see my first eating competition and I was hooked. I couldn't believe that these people were eating massive amounts of food in such a short amount of time. After that I knew I wanted to shoot a documentary about this crazy world of competitive eating. The more I researched, I realized that this 'sport' has a huge following and the characters involved in it are not that far removed from the world of wrestling. The thing that sealed the deal for me was when I came across a Canadian competitive eater named Furious Pete who was destroying records around the world. What made his story truly unique (and ironic) is that not only is he one of the greatest competitive eaters in the world - he is a also a former anorexic! That's when the light bulb when off in my head and I realized I had to make this documentary.


Igal: When he realized he had to make the documentary, he contacted me and we went up to Hamilton to shoot the demo. After watching Pete eat a four-pound burrito in 38 seconds, I realized there was something here.


What type of projects do you hope to produce in the future?


George: We have quite a few interesting projects that we are discussing right now, and I have to say that they are all very different. As I said before, if I'm excited about what I'm creating then I like to think that there's got to be others out there that will be as well.


Igal:  To add to that, the projects vary from unique to serious, to some that are even political. We both have different interests and it helps us to bring various topics/ideas that we want to explore.


You both have your own companies; will you produce projects separately?

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

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