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Official Festival Selection: “Once I Was A Champion”

Our latest festival selection, ” Once I Was A Champion” should be a very big treat for fans of the MMA sport. “Champion” is a gripping documentary from director Gerard Roxburgh about the sudden and tragic death of former UFC Champion Evan Tanner and its effect on the MMA community.

Tanner, who was a huge staple for UFC died on September 8, 2008 at the age of 37 while on a personal quest through the desert in Brawley, California searching for what was said to be a “treasure,” not necessarily referring to some form of material possession. Tanner, who had become an avid blogger before his death, touched many lives and inspired countless people. He had admitted to his problems with alcoholism and vowed to better his life, embarking on a personal and spiritual quest to become a better person.

Told from the perspective of interviews from fellow MMA fighters, friends and family, “Champion” tells the story of one man’s fighting spirit, his rise to the top and his personal struggles before passing on before his time.

“Once I Was A Champion” has received much attention from UFC and the entire MMA community and had a recent run at the 2011 LA Film Festival. It can now add DVF 24, to screen Friday Sept 23 at 9PM. Gerard Roxburgh will be in attendance. This will also be the film’s premiere for the city of Dallas. You can learn more about the film at its official website,

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About VideoFest

The Video Association of Dallas is dedicated to promoting an understanding of video as a creative medium and cultural force in our society, and to supporting and advancing the work of Texas artists working in video and the electronic arts. Through its programs and information services, the Video Association intends to educate and inform artists, students, educators, critics, video and film producers and an interested public so they may better understand, appreciate and evaluate the creative possibilities of the video medium. It will also provide a forum for the work of regional video artists, in order to stimulate excellence in their work and provide the opportunity for dialogue and critical discussion.

3 responses to “Official Festival Selection: “Once I Was A Champion”

  1. kenny adler ⋅

    i saw this at the LA FF and it was outstanding, glad it is coming to Dallas, great story and film

    • Yes, I enjoyed it as well. Its definitely a different side of MMA and tells quite an interesting, yet tragic story about Evan Tanner. Where are you from, Kenny? Will you be attending our festival this year?

  2. NL ⋅

    Powerful documentary about a unique spirit of our times. A pariah of the best kind; a seeker.

    I recommend it to anyone who has every asked the tough questions of themselves and the world around them.

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