runner poster



Shorts Programme 8

DIRECTOR : Mike McDougall
COUNTRY : South Africa
YEAR : 2018
TIME : 22min

Nu Metro 4, 11 Oct @ 5.30 | 17 Oct @10 am


Louisa, 27, must achieve the Olympic qualifying time for her event– the 400m. She’s inspired by her late mother and the degrading, poor township life they endured. Her coach, Jacques, drives her on but her times aren’t improving. Jacques’s failing patience and her frustration explode. He doubts her commitment and she, his skills. Reconciling though, he explains only she can produce the last effort necessary. Timed by Tony, the assistant coach, she taps deep into the pain of her mother’s sacrifices and starts a lap without blocks and in bare feet – the way she competed as a kid. Tony – a secret admirer – shows she’s smashed the time. With blocks and spikes, probably the world record!
Overjoyed, Louisa rushes to the doctor’s office where Jacques and the team doctor offer muted congratulations before telling her devastating news which destroys all Olympic hope and will end her promising young life…



Mike worked for four years for a major telecoms company after graduating, before leaving to drive a Land Rover from London to Cape Town, raising fifty thousand dollars for
charity on a journey that entirely changed his view on the developing world and life itself.
Returning to the UK he worked for several years on various TV shows, including aerial filming which introduced him to the joy of helicopter flight and motivated him to become a
commercial helicopter pilot.He spent the following years alternating writing and producing with flying for humanitarian services connected to the civil war in Sudan, tsunami in Sumatra, earthquake in Pakistan and reconstruction efforts in Afghanistan. The Runner is be Mike’s first professional short film.