David Zeiger on

The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner

Released 1962
Distributor Continental Distributing

Knighted in 2001, Tom Courtenay shot to stardom in 1962 as Colin Smith, a troubled teen who finds redemption in long-distance running. Tony Richardson directed while screenwriter Alan Sillitoe based the script on his own short story. Though Britain’s “kitchen sink” dramas usually took place on the wrong side of the tracks, they had their own kind of glamour thanks to cinematographers like Walter Lassally who makes Colin’s solitary struggle seem rather romantic.

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About David Zeiger

Guggenheim Fellow David Zeiger has been making documentary films and series for 20 years, starting with The Band, a film about his son’s junior year in high school, broadcast on the PBS series P.O.V. in 1997. His short documentary, Funny Old Guys, was broadcast in 2002 by HBO. His 2006 film, Sir! No Sir!, ran theatrically in 65 cities throughout the U.S. and Canada and was broadcast in 200 countries worldwide. It won Best Documentary at the Los Angeles Film Festival (Audience Award) and Hamptons Film Festival, and Seeds of War Award at the Full Frame Documentary Festival. In 2010 he was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship and in 2012 completed his first narrative feature, Sweet Old World.