The Road to Sparta

18 September 2014

The Road to Sparta is a short film about four individuals, including the great Dean Karnazes, running the 2014 Spartathlon, a 246 kilometre ultra-marathon between Athens and Sparta.

It will not, however, be a straightforward sports documentary; it is more of an artumentary where sport meets history meets music, a film of brain, brawn and beauty. Through Dean Karnazes, THE ROAD TO SPARTA will look at the history of the race which dates back to 490BC and the ancient Greek runner Pheidippides while the Greek band Old House Playground will be composing an original score for the film.

Greek Olympic legend Ioannis Melissanidis, now an actor, has also thrown his weight behind the film. He will be the voice of Herodotus.

Today's runners are following in the path of Pheidippides. He was the runner sent by the Athenians to Sparta in 490BC in a bid to raise reinforcements to fight the mighty Persian army in what was to be the Battle of Marathon. According to the historian Herodotus, he arrived in Sparta "the next day".

Dean Karnazes; perhaps the best-known ultra-marathoner in the world. He has won Badwater and many other races and is currently writing a book about Pheidippides. Running his first Spartathlon, he is also attempting to emulate Pheidippides by cutting out the food and nutrient drinks available to modern runners and sticking to the kind of diet that Pheidippides might have had in 490BC. "It's a little scary but I am training like hell and looking forward to it. See you in Greece."

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