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Project of the Day: ‘It Hurts To Win’

Project of the Day: 'It Hurts To Win'

Here’s your daily dose of an indie film in progress; at the end of the week, you’ll have the chance to vote for your favorite.

In the meantime: Is this a movie you’d want to see? Tell us in the comments.

“It Hurts To Win” 

Tweetable Logline: After their program is cut, the Boston University wrestling team grapples through adversity as it fights to save itself from extinction.

Elevator Pitch: After their program is cut, the Boston University wrestling team grapples through the adversity of its final season as a recognized program. With a sport like wrestling, being such a tightly-knit community, the loss of a program is much more than a small brief in the sports section; it’s the loss of a passion. At the base of everything, this is an emotional story of loss, brotherhood, and perseverance in the face of adversity. It’s the story of a family facing certain extinction, and it redefines the what it truly means to “win.”

Production Team:

Brandon Lavoie: Co-Director, Executive Producer, Director of Photography
Mike Abelson: Co-Director, Executive Producer, Interviewer/Writer
Fernando Martinez: Composing the Original Music for the film (also scored “Bending Steel,” 2013)
Brady Darragh: Editor
Jack Goodman: Audio Post-Production & Sound Design

About the Production: Mike and I began this project nearly half a year ago. We have watched it grow literally right in front of our eyes, and through our lens, into something bigger than we ever could have hoped for; something with a life of its own, something bigger than ourselves. What’s inspired us to get out of bed each day and make this film, is the young men whose story we are trying to champion. Their story of brotherhood and a family facing adversity together, has motivated both Mike and I to tell this story in the most compelling way possible.

Current Status: Nearing the end of production while also fundraising for post-production.

For more information and to support this project: Indiegogo Page

If you have an in-the-works project and you’d like to be profiled in an upcoming iW Project of the Day column, submit yourself by filling out this form!

This Article is related to: Filmmaker Toolkit and tagged


Lison Baselis-Bitoun

I vote for It hurts to win. A very compelling story indeed.

Lee B

As a parent who saw the tremendous lessons learned in the wrestling room, I was very disappointed with BU decision. I vote for It Hurts to Win in the hope that it will keep wrestling viable at BU.

Pat Duthie

It Hurts To Win

Rita Edwards

I vote for It Hurts To Win.

john griffin

Very excited for "It Hurts to Win"

Lison Baselis-Bitoun

A story of courage and determination of young men and their coaches against "the machine".
Way to go guys keep-up the good fight!


This will be a great resource for the wrestling community. Everyone loves a great story of hard work, sweat, determination, and a good fight against "the man"!


Good luck, guys.


As a former athlete, I would have been absolutely devastated to hear that my school was cutting a program that I dedicated so much time and effort to. These wrestlers have a true passion for their sport and continue to do so, even though they know what's ahead at the end of their season. This story much be told and I think Brandon and Mike are two perfect filmmakers to bring the story of this team into the light.

Art Golden

Absolutely I would go see this!

Brandon Lavoie & Mike Abelson

Thanks IndieWire!

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