Hollywood Producer JEFF WALD: I Am Still In Awe Of M. Ali
16.01.07 - By JEFF WALD, Movie and TV Producer Extraordinaire - from www.BoxingConfidential.com: I first met Ali in late 1968 early 1969 when I was representing songwriter Oscar Brown Jr., made a musical out of a play called BIG TIME BUCK WHITE. We were fans of Ali and they had stripped him of his right to fight.
We put him in this play that opened I believe at the Winter Garden theater. The play opened and closed in six days.
The other producer insisted on Ali wearing this ridiculous wig. I was proud of the fact that we were able to put some money in his pocket as well as give him some different visibility and a forum for his wonderful views on the Viet Nam war.
I next saw him at both the Rumble in the Jungle and the Thrilla in Manila. I have the original program signed by Ali and George Foreman.
I went with Stallone to the second Spinks fight at the Superdome and spent a few minutes in his dressing room. I saw many of his fights and never ceased to be awed..
I was at the Oscars with George Foreman when 'They Were Kings" won for best documentary. I got out of my seat and grabbed George who helped Ali up and we went on stage at the Oscars. It was an incredible moment.
We went back to the press room and they asked George what he thought when he saw the movie. I will never forget his answer. He said "I keep hoping the ending will change."
It was a great moment to be with these two incredible warriors who both have contributed so much to America and the world.