ESPN 30 for 30: Ben Johnson

pretty excited to see the documentary… Angela… any chance you’ll be in it?

It’ll be interesting to see to what extent the documentary reflects the chronicles of “Speed Trap”. If you haven’t purchased “Speed Trap” yet, I certainly recommend it.

Because it has the same maker (Daniel Gordon) I assume this is the same docu as the one that was aired earlier this year on the BBC under the title “The race that shocked the world” and discussed on this forum:

Check out my newest blog. Yeah, I know I am slow but what ever…

I heard about the documentary coming to Toronto so I emailed Daniel Gordon and we met.
He invited me to go the opening and I brought my sister. I tried getting Angie but she wouldn’t go so I got tickets for 3 of her 4 kids and Charlie’s brother a week after it opened.
I feel the documentary does an excellent job reflecting Charlie’s sentiments from Speed Trap. Gordon clearly used his book as a strong guideline for this masterful documentary… IMO…:wink:
Yes, I am in it but remember , at 22 years old, I really had no idea about what I had gotten myself into… hence the permanent smile on my face in the brief clip which I find both interesting and embarrassing to look back on. The truth is I was there with Charlie, supporting him no matter what and while I know this sounds completely naive, I really did not know how else to act in that situation.
There is no question what so ever… Charlie would have loved Gordon’s work.

Ange, did Daniel tell you if the documentary is going to have a wider distribution after the festival?

Ill be rewatching it again just to hear dennis mitchells comments on bens start. And to also get mad at sugar king carl

The film was accepted into the Brazilian Film festival but as far as a wider film distribution I suspect this depends on how it gets reviewed when shown on TSN or other networks.
Documentaries are very expensive niche oriented projects and we are lucky to have this topic investigated outside of main stream likability or the topic would not see the light of day. Flash , you clearly know much more about this than I do. Please contact me directly if you wish to be connected to Gordon.
Let’s face it… Does anyone really want to discuss such topic matter ? … Let’s go back 20 plus years when Charlie and I met with a former top news commentator very well known…, This person publicly decried what happened in 1988 yet privately the story was well… off the record.

Dennis was one of the first sprinters I remember meeting with Charlie in Italy. He is full of life this guy and always had a smile on his face. He is the kind of guy who is hard to dislike.

He was very friendly at the US trials at the warm up track area when I was there.

A very neat piece written by Charles P Pierce for Grantland in the lead up to the release of 30 for 30.

Just finished watching the United States premiere of the documentary on ESPN 30 for 30. Question: Angela, in the documentary Ben Johnson stated that while visiting L.A. in 2006 a gentleman from the Santa Monica Track Club personally confessed to not only have spiked Ben Johnson’s drink at the 1988 Olympics but at many previous events. Was Charlie aware of this before he passed? I ask because Charlie shares his suspicions of the Americans in Speed Trap.

Of course.

I really appreciated and enjoyed this documentary. I became very excited when I noticed it on the schedule. I wish everyone in the documentary (I’m sure you know who I am referring to) would have been more forthcoming about their own habits. Perhaps the IOC might rethink the achievement award they doled out to the aforementioned individual.

This one was a little different than the version from this summer. I hated Carl before…After watching this I now have a total disdain for Carl. He was smug about what they did to set up Ben. Carl his “music manager” and Andre did ben dirty. But what really pisses me off is that not only did they destroy bens life, they destroyed alot of peoples lives. and killed possible wealth. Including Charlie’s and Angela. Carl IS a total dick. Fuck him!

i couldnt agree more

does anyone know of any way we can see this off the net??

Daniel Gordon ( creator and director of 9.79*) told me that he felt his 90 minute edit was much better than the British 55 minute edit. I agreed. When we went to London in 1991 to promote “Speed Trap” , Charlie felt the British had no interest talking about what he felt happen in Seoul.

What I really loved about the documentary was how each person revealed a clear picture of who they are based on the story they told. Mere words do not really cut it do they? The power of film allows the viewer to draw their own conclusions based on facial expressions, eye movement and body language.

Chris, Charlie was wounded for what happened but in the end he made piece with the world. Not many people accomplish what he did in his short life. Each of of in life get to choose how we handle situations and Charlie did so with integrity and hard work. He had much to be thankful for as do I and neither of us had any regrets. AT the end of our days, I want to see how many of us can really say this?

Im sure time does heal wounds. Im sure you and Charlie definitely enjoyed your lives and time together. One cannot dwell on something they cannot control. Charlie took the high road unlike trevor graham, and I thank him for that. Without what ive learned from Charlie I never would have ran my PR.

But I still have extreme contempt for Carl and his cronies. Atleast the film let everyone know that no other sprinters liked carl either. Even the americans.

Disappointment that didn’t get carried on TSN here in Canada. I’ll have to keep an eye out for it. I’ll also plan time to re visit Speed Trap.