Since its release in 1985, I Like to Hurt People has gained a cult following both within and outside the wrestling industry.

Back in 2007, Bryan Greenberg, who served as the Producer and Director of Photography, expressed his desire to create an alternative version of the film in an interview with SLAM! Wrestling, by incorporating both the original and unused footage.

After 20 years since obtaining the original footage, Greenberg has finally released his version, Ringside: How We Made I Like to Hurt People. The film is currently only available on DVD via eBay.

While the new cut has some treasures, the industry in 1978 was still tightly guarded. Sadly, some of the best footage was shot on 8mm, without sound. Therefore, you won’t hear The Sheik’s voice or a conversation with Dory Funk Jr.’s planning a match with Abdullah the Butcher.

But you will see wrestlers Dick the Bruiser and Funk Jr. try multiple takes on promos, Andre the Giant practicing his lines, and a journey to The Sheik’s home outside Lansing, Mich.

Also featured are scenes shot at a topless bar (so this film is strictly for adults). Additionally, there is footage included that shows some late attempts to finish the original film. According to Greenberg, the original plan for the film was for it to be a true movie, but it was later changed to a documentary due to the wrestlers constantly coming in and out of the Detroit territory.

The film remained unfinished until the original director and producer, Donald G. Jackson, sold the footage to New World in 1985. Upon its initial release, I Like to Hurt People shocked Greenberg.

“New World was looking for titles to release on the new medium laserdisc,” Greenberg said in 2007, “and Jackson sold them the footage.” New World would shoot some additional footage, specifically Dave Bourke as Lou Firpin and The Sheik, adding a “Stop the Sheik” storyline to the older footage.

Greenberg obtained most of the original footage in 2003. Also included was the original music produced and mostly performed by long-time Detroit announcer Bob Finnegan. The soundtrack is also available on eBay.

The most interesting part of the feature comes from Greenberg finds himself working with Dick the Bruiser on a television ad a few years after the filming of the original (but still five years before its release), where Bruiser jokes with Greenberg if the film is ever going to be released. Bruiser was the first person shot for the original film.

Greenberg narrates the new film, telling stories of the original idea, how filming was planned, and what it was like working with The Sheik’s Big Time Wrestling out of Detroit.

The new cut lasts around an hour and is best suited for those who have seen the original.


The stories behind I Like to Hurt People