Update: Matt Damon has signed on to narrate the documentary.
“Matt’s role as narrator for ‘BOSTON’ perfectly complements director Jon Dunham’s vision for the movie as an everlasting record of the race,” according to a release.
Earlier: This April, Bostonians can revel in fondness for their beloved Marathon, with the world premiere of the documentary film “Boston,” a chronicle of the history of the Boston Marathon. The premiere will take place at the Boch Center’s Wang Theatre April 15 at 8 p.m., with a portion of each ticket sale benefiting Martin’s Park.
“Boston,” a full length documentary spotlighting the event, spans the Marathon’s 1897’s origins to its 2014 results, featuring some of the greatest marathoners to have run the 26.2 mile race. Directed and produced by award winning filmmaker/marathoner Jon Dunham, the film also features a soundtrack by Emmy Award winning composer Jeff Beal, well known for his work in House of Cards. Academy Award nominees Megan Williams and Frank Marshall also assisted in the film’s production, which features extensive archive of video, photos, and memorabilia from over the Marathon’s years.
On the heels of his two previously successful marathon films, “Spirit of the Marathon” and “Spirit of the Marathon II,” Dunham began work on his third. (You can see the trailer, here.)
“While making these films [Spirit and Spirit II], Boston was always on my mind because of its uniqueness in the marathon world,” said Dunham. In 2012, Dunham started to ramp up ideas for production and connected with the Boston Athletic Association on that front. After the 2013 bombings, though, Dunham said his immediate instinct was not to make a film, and to “take a step back from it and give the race and communities time to process and heal,” he said.
But Dunham began to think forward to the 2014 race, “and really how that was going to be such an important year in the history of the event,” he said. “I thought, someone should really document that. I got back to the BAA and ultimately they agreed,” he said.
“We filmed the race in twenty-fourteen, so we captured that very important moment of everyone coming back; and I think it’s very moving to witness all of that … to see how everybody has rebounded from [the bombings] is just inspiring,” he said.
But “Boston” is not a film solely about the events of 2013. “It’s what I always intended it to be, in that it’s the story of the Boston Marathon – how it began, and how it has grown and evolved,” he explained. The film, he went on, is comprised of the “many great stories told by many great champions from all around the world.”
And the marathon’s rich history was a big motivator for Dunham’s work on the first ever feature length film surrounding the Boston event. “It’s an iconic sporting event all around the world. Even within the running world, I don’t think people really know the rich story that this race has,” he said.
“There really are just so many great stories and Boston has been the sight of so many firsts… I think it will really serve to enlighten people about what the Boston Marathon is all about,” said Dunham. “It’s very much a complete story of the Marathon.”
The live show, hosted by WBZ-TV and featuring anchors Lisa Hughes and David Wade, will also offer a live performance of Beal’s original film score by the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra. Limited tickets for the event will be available this Saturday, Feb. 4, at 10 a.m. online, by phone at 800-982-2787, or in person at the Boch Center Box Office, located at 270 Tremont St. Additional donations can be made here.