Netflix’s show Glo has been a hit, and they just wrapped their second season. Jacque Reid’s guest tells the story of African American female wrestlers in the 1950s, 60s and 70s.
Chris Bournea produced Lady Wrestler: The Amazing, Untold Story of African-American Women in the Ring and he calls their story “amazing.” The story first caught his attention while he was working as a print journalist in Columbus, Ohio.
He believes that “they just have a story that transcends race,” and he was compelled to tell it. He told the story of Ethal Johnson back in 2005, and one can’t deny the difference in the way she was treated overseas versus in America. Abroad she was treated like a queen but in the American south she had to deal with racism and Jim Crow laws even though she was a professional wrestler.
Bournea says he knew Johnson’s story and stories like hers needed to go “beyond a single newspaper article,” so he brought her the idea of an on camera interview and she agreed.
The documentary chronicles the stories of Johnson along with Babs Wingo, Marva Scott, Ramona Isbell and dozens of other African-American women who faced both racism and sexism to succeed in the male-dominated world of professional wrestling, all while raising families. Visit Ladywrestlermovie.com for more information.