The Wrestler is a 1974 independent film produced by professional wrestler Verne Gagne and starring Ed Asner as 'Frank Bass', a wrestling promoter. Verne Gagne also stars in the movie as Mike Bollar, the current wrestling champion of his 'league.' Billy Robinson plays Bollar's latest challenger, Billy Taylor. After a long reign as champion, Bollar is getting older and feeling pressure from all sides, including his wife and wrestling promoters, to pass the championship to Taylor and retire. Bollar's resistance to their requests that he step aside is the central conflict in the film. Gagne not only acts in the movie but also wrestles during a few of the wrestling scenes. He faces Larry Hennig in the first match at the Cow Palace, located just outside San Francisco. Many American Wrestling Association performers appear in the movie.