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June 10, 2014

'350 Days' body slams into glamour, drugs of 1980s wrestling

Many of them are now broken men — both physically and financially — but in the 1980s they were like rock stars, lured by a lifestyle of big money, fast women, drugs and steroids.

A new documentary entitled "350 Days" explores their lives and what is described as the "golden era" of professional wrestling.
1980s wrestling

The 1980s saw a surge in its popularity in the United States and Canada. Contributing to its success was the expansion of cable television and pay-per-view and a period of cross-promotion between the WWF and elements of the music industry, including singer Cyndi Lauper.

The documentary is a co-effort of Vancouver-based actor Fulvio Cecere, who is the director and co-producer, along with producer Darren Antola.

"I did wrestle in high school so I appreciate the sport of it, but the entertainment part of it I didn't know anything about it," said Cecere, 54, who grew up in Montreal and has a long list of TV and movie credits.

Cecere said he and Antola were working on reality TV show proposals. When those didn't work out they found the world of professional wrestling provided another opportunity.

An interview with "Superstar" Billy Graham, who was a champion in the late 1970s as well as an award-winning bodybuilder who trained with Arnold Schwarzenegger, was an eye opener.

"He was just so nonchalant. He said, 'I'd get up in the morning and shoot my speed and I did this and this and that' and just rattled it off like a grocery list," said Cecere.

"The honesty, the openness, the stuff that was coming out, I knew I was on to something. From then on we started going to as many people as possible."

The title, "350 Days," refers to the amount of time many of the performers wrestled every year...More?

source: cbc.ca


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