23rd Annual Minneapolis - St. Paul International Film Festival

RING OF FIRE: THE EMILE GRIFFITH STORY (Emerging Filmmakers Competition)
2005 - USA - 87 Minutes

Buy a ticket at brownpapertickets.com!

DIRECTOR: Dan Klores and Ron Berger
CAST: Emile Griffith, Benny Paret

It was the first live death in the history of network television: On a Saturday night 1962 under the white-hot lights of Madison Square Garden, Emile Griffith faced the then-champion Benny Paret in one of the most memorable boxing matches of all time. That night Emile Griffith was crowned champion, but at the cost of a man’s life. Days later Paret died from injuries suffered from the bout. This tragedy sent waves the sports world. Within hours politicians, clergyman, teachers, and broadcasters demanded an immediate and permanent ban on boxing. This was not the only story of the fight. Prior to the match Paret began to taunt Griffith, calling him a “maricon,” the Spanish word for “faggot.” In the 1960s sports world the thought of a gay boxer was unheard of and this accusation threatened to ruin Griffith’s career. Ring of Fire goes beyond the sports aspect and delves deeply into the personal lives of the people involved, exploring issues of masculinity, sexuality, and violence. Still Haunted by Paret’s death over 40 years later, Griffith encounters one final chance to put old demons to rest when he seeks out Paret’s son. Their meeting, captured on film, is explosively emotional to say the least. -BW Dan Klores is an award-winning filmmaker whose first film, The Boys of 2nd Street Park, premiered at the 2003 Sundance Film Festival and was subsequently aired on Showtime. As a producer his credits include Paul Simon’s Tony-nominated Broadway musical, The Capeman and Warner Bros. City by the Sea. Klores is also a writer whose work has appeared in Esquire, New York magazine, and the Village Voice. Ron Berger previously co-produced and co-directed the award winning “The Boys of 2nd Street Park” with Dan Klores. Aside from film, Ron has been working in advertising since he was 18. He is now the Chief Executive Officer of the $2 billion advertising company, Euro RSCG

PRODUCER: Dan Klores and Ron Berger
EDITOR: Michael Levine
MUSIC: Brian Chin

Friday, April 08 7:30pm Lagoon Cinema
Thursday, April 14 5pm Lagoon Cinema