Remember the documentary film about former Arkansas quarterback Mitch Mustain that we mentioned last January? Well, it’s almost finished, and it’s set to debut at the 2013 Little Rock Film Festival next month.
The Identity Theft of Mitch Mustain, written and directed by Fayetteville filmmaker Matthew Wolfe, tells the story of Mustain’s rise as the first-ever consensus Gatorade, Parade, and USA Today Player of the Year in high school, through his college football career, and his present day struggle to find an identity outside the spotlight.
“To be honest, I made this film because it’s a movie I wanted to watch,” Wolfe said. “I couldn’t believe no one else was trying to tell his story.”
The film is narrated by former Razorback head basketball coach Nolan Richardson, and includes original music by Fayetteville native Benjamin Del Shreve, Grammy-winning Little Rock songwriter David Hodges (Evanescence), and well-known producer Dan the Automator.
Wolfe said that the film does not shy away from some of the controversy surrounding Mustain’s playing days as a Razorback. Mustain was 8-0 as a freshman starter for Arkansas before being benched in favor of upperclassman Casey Dick, and ultimately transferring to the University of Southern California.
“Oh, it’s all in there,” he said. “It’s a 90-minute film, so it covers a lot.”
The film also follows Mustain through his brief experiment as a minor league baseball player, and his current position as back-up quarterback for the San Jose Sabercats Arena Football team.
Ultimately, Wolfe said, he can’t wait for people to learn more about Mustain as a person rather than just a football player.
“The thing I look forward to most is people getting to know him for who he is, rather than who he’s painted to be,” he said. “He’s a funny, funny guy.”
Wolfe said he was thrilled to work with Richardson on the project. “Dan (the Automator) asked me, ‘If you could get Morgan Freeman or Nolan Richardson to narrate, who would you have chosen?’” Wolfe said. “It would take me about four seconds to choose Nolan. Getting him involved was a huge deal to me.”
The Little Rock Film Festival will take place May 15-17 at various venues around the city. Specific screening times for The Identity Theft of Mitch Mustain have not yet been announced.