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Louis Theroux reveals what surprised him filming Eddie Hall documentary

The documentary maker says Eddie Hall's family were surprisingly welcoming as he and his team got to know the former World's Strongest Man.

Eddie Hall, Louis Theroux and Eddie's wife, Alexandra
Instagram/@eddiehallwsm
Published: Sunday, 26th June 2022 at 8:00 am
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Louis Theroux is back with a new documentary, this time looking at former World's Strongest Man Eddie Hall in Eddie Hall: The Beast v The Mountain.

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In March 2022, Eddie Hall and Hafthor ‘Thor’ Bjornsson (better known as Game of Thrones’ The Mountain) took to the ring in Dubai for what was dubbed as the heaviest boxing match in history.

It comes after Hall won the title of World's Strongest Man in 2017, which Bjornsson accused him of cheating his way to.

The one-off film, which airs on Sunday 26th June, will look at the moments leading up to the epic fight and the main event itself.

It will also look at Eddie's life as a husband and dad, and touch upon his mental health battle.

Speaking exclusively to RadioTimes.com Louis Theroux reveals what surprised him most when producing this documentary.

"I was pleasantly surprised how open Eddie was, how much he and his family welcomed our cameras, and how much leeway [director] Olivia [Isaacs] and the team were given to tell the story," he said.

"Eddie is a rock star, but there was no rock star attitude. In the world they inhabit, this was the biggest thing imaginable – two giants facing off – but we had run of the story and it felt like a huge privilege."

Eddie Hall and Thor
Eddie Hall and Thor BBC

Hall has been open about his struggle with mental health - something Louis says created an "unexpected duality" with Eddie known for being The World's Strongest Man to the public, while battling with his own issues.

Louis added: "It’s also the case that, given Eddie’s mental health issues, which he has been open about in the past, there is an unexpected duality - someone who is so tough and yet so fragile. I hope viewers will take away a deeper appreciation of how common it is to suffer over one’s mental health. Also, that it’s just a kick-ass story, funny, and sad in places, but mainly compelling and life-affirming."

As a renowned documentary maker, Theroux has explored various topics - from Donald Trump's presidency to Tiger King Joe Exotic, whose story he revisited last year.

Earlier this year, he released a trilogy titled Forbidden America, which looked at the impact of the internet and social media on some of the most controversial corners of American culture.

Asked what inspired him to choose Eddie as his latest subject, Theroux explained: "When I was a kid I loved strong man competitions – huge men running around with barrels and lifting tractor tyres. There’s something so primal about it – they are like real life superheroes. Then last year a BBC commissioner told us about a boxing match between two of the world’s strongest men – Eddie and Thor – and about the emotional backstory of the feud and friendship gone sour.

"I was really excited straightaway. Honestly, I can’t imagine a story that on one level is easier to grasp, the narrative is so simple – and yet it’s also subtle and psychologically compelling. On the face of it, the story is that Eddie has to slay the dragon, which is Thor. But you come to realise as you watch that the real dragon is something inside Eddie, and that Thor is just a representation of whatever that is, for a while."

Eddie Hall: The Beast v The Mountain premieres on BBC Three and BBC iPlayer on Sunday 26th June. Check out more of our Documentaries coverage or visit our TV Guide to see what's on tonight.

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