Film & TV

Adelaide-produced doco selected for the Boston Independent Film Awards

The four-year film project, I’m Not a Runner, aimed to show that ordinary people can do wonderful things. Now the film is getting international recognition.

Photos supplied by Anna Liptak

I’m Not a Runner is a documentary that proved ordinary people can do extraordinary things. The remarkable 52-minute film has proved that fact, as the film has been selected for the Boston Independent Film Awards.

The Boston Independent Film Awards finds talented US and international filmmakers and help promote their work. It’s mission is to create “the best possible virtual online festival in order to promote and recognise indie film and script projects from all over the world.”

The film awards reviews films from all genres, including categories like Best Narrative Feature, Best Documentary, and Best Animation.

The documentary followed the highs and lows of six South Australian women as they prepared to run the gruelling 42-kilometre New York City Marathon for the first time in 2018.

The runners weren’t the only rookies trying something new. The film was produced by a trio of self-proclaimed “non-filmmakers” – making the story of I’m Not a Runner even more extraordinary.

Pictured (left to right): Johnny Taranto, James Wakelin, and Anna Liptak

Under the banner Adventure Time Films, Director Johnny Taranto and Executive Producers Anna Liptak and James Wakelin captured the magic. Along with the importance of self-belief, community support, and hard work.

“I’m really proud of it. We had no funds, we’re not filmmakers, we just had a good idea,” Anna said.

“It showed that ordinary people can do wonderful things. We already celebrate the elites, but it’s not only the elites that can do those things.”

Although the documentary focuses on six marathon newbies, 60 Adelaideans ran the marathon in 2018. It was coordinated and trained by Anna Liptak, who (alongside being an Executive Producer) is the health and fitness extraordinaire behind it all.

“My passion is assisting people to believe in themselves and change their own stories,” Anna said.

“I want to encourage people to enjoy, have fun, and move their bodies. It can change someone’s life.”

More than one life was changed that year. The 60 marathon runners, including Mix 102.3 Breakfast host Mark ‘Soda’ Soderstrom, raised an incredible amount of money for the Flinders Foundation.

“We and Mix 102.3 collectively raised $300,000 which funded the construction of the Flinders Cancer Wellness Centre,” said Anna.

The Flinders Cancer Wellness Centre now helps ease the burdens of cancer and addresses unmet needs of patients and their families during and after cancer treatment.

The legacy of these personal achievements can now continue to inspire people, not only through the Boston Independent Film Awards nomination, but also through Australian classrooms.

A brand-new study guide of the film was released this week to more than 14,000 schools across the country. It is available to download for free from The Education Shop.

Watch I’m Not a Runner on SBS at 4pm this Sunday, 20th February 2022.

If interested, book into one of the small zoom group sessions with Anna, to talk about the film and ask question (Sunday 20th at 5:30pm; Monday 21st at 7:30pm).

Watch I’m Not a Runner on Vimeo.

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