Documentaries
The Equalizer (2016)
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ONE-HOUR TELEVISION DOCUMENTARY

This sports science investigation reveals who wins when the greatest athletes – present and past – compete against each other on a level playing field.

The Equalizer is co-produced by Kensington and Berlin Producers (Germany) for CBC-TV’s The Nature of Things (Canada), SRC (French Canada), Ici Explora (French Canada), ZDF (Germany), Arte (Germany/France), and other international broadcasters.

 

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Watch The Equalizer outside Canada

 

The Equalizer is a companion to our 2018 film on winter sports: Champions vs. Legends.

AWARDS

Nominated, Best Sports Program, Canadian Screen Awards, 2016

Winner Platinum REMI, Worldfest Houston

Finalist, International Sport Film Festival, Palermo

SYNOPSIS

Every year, athletes set new world records. But are today’s champions really superior to legends of the past? Or are they only faster because their equipment is more high-tech?
To find out, renowned sports scientist Steve Haake meets five top athletes, and challenges them to beat the world records of athletic legends while using old-school gear.

Sprinter Andre De Grasse attempts to beat the world record of the legendary Jesse Owens while running on a 1930s-era track and wearing replicas of Owens’ shoes. Sarah Hammer rides a 1960s-era bike to compete against legendary British cyclist Beryl Burton. Paul Biedermann trades his full-body swimsuit for a 1970s-era Speedo to compete against nine-time Olympic Champion Mark Spitz. Christina Obergföll throws a 1980s-era javelin to compete against 1980s world record holder Fatima Whitbread. And Canadian kayaker Adam van Koeverden trades his carbon fibre kayak for a vintage wooden model to challenge 1940s-era Swedish Olympic legend Gert Fredriksson.

In every event, the winner is impossible to predict. Taken together, the matchups reveal the effect of technological advances on performance, and something shared by athletes of every era: the innate human drive to win.

CREDITS

Producer
ROBERT LANG

Director
REBECCA SNOW

Additional direction
KRISTIAN KAHLER
ROBERT LANG

Writer
ALLEN BOOTH

Consultant
PROFESSOR STEVE HAAKE
Director, Centre for Sports Engineering Research, Sheffield Hallam University

Editor
GRAEME BALL

Music Composed by:
ERIC CADESKY
NICK DYER

Directors of Photography
CHRIS ROMEIKE (North America)
SEBASTIAN HATTOP (Europe)

Additional Photography (North America)
MARK CASWELL
IRIS NG
MAX ARMSTRONG

Additional Photography (Europe)
MAX PREISS
FREDERIK KLOSE-GERLICH

Camera Assistant
SCOTT BURTON (North America)
MARCUS ZAHN (Europe)

Dolly Grip (Europe)
TINA LEA KUENNEMANN
COLJA KRUGMANN

Drone Operators
TOBIAS PLEBAN (Europe)
CHRISTIAAN CLOETE (Canada)
BRENT MURRAY (US)
JUSTIN BRITT (US)

Researchers
KAREN DOUGHERTY
ULRIKE NEUBECKER

Visual Researcher
ELSPETH DOMVILLE

Assistant Editors
KYLE CARRIE-MATTIMOE
CONRAD KONERT
DENISE LEE
JOSEF BEEBY

Sound Recordists (North America)
CHRIS MILLER
MIKE FILIPPOV
SEAN FELDSTEIN

Sound Recordists (Germany)
THOMAS WARNEKE
TOBIAS RAPP

Production Manager
EVA-MARIA WEERTS (Germany)
ALLYSON LUCHAK (Canada)

Production Coordinator
JORGE THIELEN-ARMAND (Canada)

Post-Production Coordinator (Canada)
FLORENCIA MARTINEZ CARRANZA

Animation and motion graphics
SOULPIX HANNOVER
FRANK SENNHOLZ
DIMITRI BAUER
NILS DECHENTHIN
BEKA GWARLIANI

Online editor
ADRIAN SEYWELL

Colourist
ARLENE MOELKER

Sound Editor
GARY VAUGHAN

Sound re-recording
RICHARD SPENCE-THOMAS

Production Accountants
MICHELE DAVIS (Canada)
ARLETTE HEYN (Germany)

Business Affairs Coordinator
ADRIANNA CRIFO

Production Office Managers
ATEFEH SADREDDIN
IRIS GEHLERT

Publicist
MARGARET SIROTICH

Social Media Manager
CHERYL GUDZ

Special Thanks to:
ANTHONY COHEN
Centre for Sports Engineering Research at Sheffield Hallam University
AMANDA BROTHWELL
RICK KESKINEN
CANADIAN CANOE MUSEUM
MARIPOSA BICYCLES
EIS SHEFFIELD
IAT LEIPZIG
STADTWERKE HALLE
ESTV OFFENBURG
MOGONO LEIPZIG
DRESDNER BÄDER
OTTOOTTO GMBH
SHEFFIELD CITY KAYAK CLUB
TSV BAYER 04 LEVERKUSEN E.V.
SPORTMUSEUM BERLIN
MARIA RITSCHEL
WERNER DANIELS
GREG STEYGER

Executive Producer (for Kensington)
ROBERT LANG

Executive Producer (for Berlin Producers)
KRISTIAN KAEHLER