“Back on Board: Greg Louganis” is an intimate portrait of the public triumphs and private struggles of trailblazing openly gay athlete Greg Louganis.
A refreshingly candid documentary film about this four-time Olympic champion, “Back on Board” follows Greg Louganis over the past three years as he struggles with financial security and reunites with the sport he once dominated but not welcomed in. The threat of losing his house during the recent financial crisis forces Louganis to re-evaluate the choices, relationships, and missed opportunities of his career.
With unprecedented access, the film reveals the complicated life of an athlete whose grace, beauty, and courage sparked a worldwide fascination with diving. It chronicles Louganis’ rise from a difficult upbringing to nearly universal acclaim as the greatest diver ever, and from pioneering openly gay athlete with HIV to an overlooked sports icon. “Back on Board” is the engrossing story of an American legend as he re-emerges on the world stage to combat prejudice, promote tolerance, and return to the diving world after a long period of absence to act as a mentor to the next generation.
Four-time Olympic champion Greg Louganis is widely considered the greatest diver in history. The only male to sweep both the 3m and 10m diving events in consecutive Olympic Games (’84 and ’88), Greg earned a total of 5 Olympic medals, 5 World Championship titles and 47 national titles (more than anyone in U.S. history).
A pioneer as one of the first openly gay athletes, Greg demonstrated incredible courage and strength by competing while HIV positive in the 1988 Olympics. Often remembered for the shocking moment when he struck his head on the springboard, Greg revealed his remarkable courage and tenacity when he returned to the board shortly after and performed the best dive of the competition. The next day, he won the gold and secured his legacy.
In 1984, Greg received the AAU’s James E. Sullivan Award for outstanding achievements. The following year, he was inducted into the U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame. In 1987, he won the Jesse Owens Award. In 1993, he was inducted into the International Swimming Hall of Fame. And in 1994, he was presented with the U.S. Olympic Committee’s Robert J. Kane Award. His 1995 autobiography, “Breaking the Surface” spent five weeks as the New York Times #1 best seller.
Currently, Greg is a mentor for the US Olympic diving team, a judge for the Red Bull Cliff Diving Tour, a dog agility expert, and a motivational speaker.