When Phil Hellmuth won his sixteenth bracelet on October 17th, the first person he hugged on the rail was his old friend Mike Matusow. And Mike was there to film it all with a camera on a selfie stick, at one point chased off the stage by the tournament director while the heads-up match was still taking place.
But Mike wasn’t just filming for his vlog this time. He was also recording footage to use in the upcoming documentary, which covers a month in his life at the World Series Of Poker. Most days Frank Zarrillo, owner of the documentary film company Big F Pictures, is following The Mouth around the Rio with a camera, but he is also embedded with Mike, at home, on the road, even at dinner at Mike’s favorite sushi place.
“Mike’s an amazing, generous guy,” Zarrillo said. “He won’t let me pay for anything while we’re together. And his life is wild. This film is going to be great.”
The Wrestler producer meets the Mouth
Zarrillo has been let into Mike’s life as he talks to Hellmuth on the phone multiple times a day, constantly discussing hands and talking about poker. Zarrillo, not a serious player, has been shocked by the world of high stakes tournament poker, where tremendous sums of money change hands constantly and cash is both king, and treated like it has no value at all.
So far Mike has had no significant results at the WSOP, but he claims that will all change in a profanity laden rant where he swears that “I’m gonna win this tournament just to show them. These day two buy-ins are crazy. They’ve ruined tournament poker with this shit.”
Zarrillo has produced films on other unique personalities, including the 2017 film The Wrestler: A Q.T. Marshall Story, where Zarrillo followed a professional wrestler on his last ditch effort to make it into the WWE. The film won multiple awards, including Best Documentary (Feature Film) at San Diego Comic Con.
“It’s gonna be fantastic,” Mike said. “Nobody has any idea the kind of crazy shit that happens to me.”
The Matusow documentary is expected to be feature length, though Zarrillo says he may have enough material to do a docuseries in the style of The Tiger King. It is scheduled to be released next year and the title is yet to be determined.