Two-time Emmy Award-winning director, writer and executive producer Eric Drath has done it again. His latest documentary airing Friday, December 4 at 9pm on Showtime is titled Macho: The Hector Camacho Story. See the trailer here.
Drath, born and raised in New York City, is the latest guest on SportsJam with Doug Doyle where he talks about his inspiring but tragic in-depth look at one of boxing's all-time greatest fighters and showmen.
After graduating from Columbia University, Drath worked for ABC News, CNN and Fox News Channel before venturing into the boxing world. He became an agent representing more than 40 fighters around the world.
Why was Drath the right person to put together a project for Showtime about the pride of Spanish Harlem?
"A network doesn't need me to tell the Hector Camacho story because it's out there in the news clips. What they need for someone like me to do is to get underneath and get that access and spend those hours and hours with the family, filming and being embedded to a certain extent with the family. And that's what I love to do."
His experience in the sport led to the right connections to be able to create this emotional and gripping documentary.
The boxing world is a marvelous fraternity if you will. It's a very small industry. It's that small community that once you're in, you are in for life. Because I was able to work with one of the executive producers Mike Acri who is one of the quiet giants of boxing and one of my mentors and friends in the business, he was able to originally able to connect me to Hector's family. But I knew Hector Jr. from working in the sport and I also met Hector Sr. covering for Fox the Leonard fight in '97 so there was a connection already with the family. There was a trust level because of Mike Acri and he had really served the Camacho family very well for many years and that's how they trusted me."
Hector Camacho's improbable rise to fame started with success in the New York Golden Gloves. He would eventually become a professional fighter and win championships in three different weight classes.
"Macho" was known for his quickness in the ring and his flamboyant style. But Drath's documentary reveals how drug abuse became of Camacho's makeup early on.
In 2012, Camacho died after being shot in Puerto Rico. To this day, no one has been arrested for his murder.
"That's how I started this project. It was really to get to the bottom of this unsolved murder. And then when I got a chance to spend time with Maria, Camacho's mom, who really embodies the spirit if you want to see where Camacho got his charisma, you'll see it through Maria. I saw a woman and a family still seeking closure. That's what really drew me to the story and gave me a purpose to go back and put ourselves in harms way many times down in Puerto Rico because there was a bigger purpose than just telling his story."
Drath, who is also the narrator of Macho: The Hector Camacho Story, says he personally wanted to be the storyteller in this project.
"I haven't narrated all my films, but the personal ones, I find it's easier to tell the story. I wanted to take the viewer on my ride. I feel like when I'm tell the story it's what I'm seeing and experiencing. "
Drath created a full-service production company called Live Star Entertainment in 2000 that specializes in live sports, concerts, award shows and original content including documentaries.
Some of his outstanding work includes Assault In The Ring on HBO, Renee', the story of transsexual tennis player Renee' Richards and No Mas about Roberto duran and Sugar Ray Leonard's controversial boxing match in the 1980's.
Hear much more about the documentary, Drath's career and upcoming projects by clicking on the podcast audio at the top of the page. You can also see the zoom interview here.