“I’ve never dropped out of any race I’ve started.”
These confident words begin our documentary and illustrate Joan Benoit-Samuelson’s devotion and passion as she strides into her fifth decade as a marathon athlete. This quote also sets up the drama and conflicted nature of an aging athlete pushing the limits in one of the most demanding sports of all. Her story is an exciting message of human potential, beating long odds and sustaining healthy philosophies for the planet and the human “race”.
An in-progress 45 minute documentary commissioned by Nike, featuring the life and spirit of, Joan Benoit-Samuelson, the first woman to win the Olympic Gold Medal in the marathon. Her rise to fame paralleled the women's movement for recognition and validation in sports. This story portrays her determination to keep running despite barriers into her fifth decade of life. Joanie's relevancy remains today, not only as a pro athlete, but also as a great, yet modest, spirit and "accidental leader" of our time. This past year, our small independent crew traveled around North America trying to keep up with Joanie's marathon lifestyle including her vital work as an ocean conservationist, a master organic gardener, a wife and mom of two, and as a fitness mentor to youth.
"There Is No Finish Line:
The Joan Benoit-Samuelson Story"
Directed by Erich Lyttle, Produced by Geoff Hollister, Director of Photography/Creative Direction by Sarah Henderson, Written by Bob Lambie and Amie Champagne