Netflix's doping documentary 'Icarus' wins best documentary

Peter Castro
March 7, 2018

"Yes, about Russian Federation but more than that about the importance of telling the truth".

Fogel, an amateur cyclist, chose to apply a similar concept to athletics by using performance-enhancing drugs while training for a race in France and seeing if he could pass an anti-doping test.

Rodchenkov alleged the Russian Sports Ministry "directed, controlled and oversaw" a "unique" method of sample manipulation during the 2014 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games in Sochi, involving a sample-swapping method where they had been able to open and reseal tamper-proof bottles. Its director, Bryan Fogel, had meant to make a film about the impact of self-administered doping on his amateur cycling efforts, but during the research he came across Grigory Rodchenkov, the former head of Russia's anti-doping program.

But their relationship took a freaky turn in November 2015, when news reports alleged that Rodchenkov was a key figure in Russia's state-sponsored doping program during the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi.

The Russian remains in witness protection in the US. Fogel's documentary helped shed a spotlight on the subject, and the country was subsequently banned from competing in the Winter Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea.

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"What he has shown to planet earth and any athlete that believes in the Olympic ideal is to not trust it, to not trust those words". The company is dedicated to funding documentaries with a social justice bent.

"It was shocking because it was 1,000 times bigger than I imagined", Fogel says.

Fogel also emotionally thanked his parents on the stage, but far away from the sight of the television cameras, his mother, in the very back of one of the upper decks in the auditorium, shrieked and waved at her Oscar-winning son.

The film was also nominated for best film editing.

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