Academy Award-shortlisted filmmaker Alex Holmes (Maiden) has partnered with Valence Media’s fledgling unscripted division MRC Non-Fiction on the production of his latest feature-length documentary.
Last Rider will chart the story of cyclist Greg LeMond, who became the first non-European professional cyclist to win the Tour de France, managing the feat three times in 1986, 1989 and 1990 and becoming one of only seven riders to win three or more Tours.
The film will document the story of how LeMond managed to come back from “the brink of death” following a hunting accident in 1987. After the accidental shooting, the cyclist underwent two surgeries and missed the next two Tours before returning to the event in 1989 to win “the closest race” in the history of the Tour de France.
“The 1989 Tour de France was one of the most thrilling spectacles in sport. It pitted LeMond, the only American ever to have won the tour, against the great French champion Laurent Fignon,” said Holmes in a statement. “It was a race that tested not only their physical endurance but their mental strength. The cat and mouse duel between Fignon and LeMond is pure cinema and this film delves deep into the psyche of these men to discover what it takes to make a champion.”
“LeMond’s career is the inspirational, against all odds story and underscores why the world of sports provides such a fertile ground for documentaries,” said Amit Dey, SVP and head of MRC Non-Fiction. “As big fans of Maiden, we believe Alex is the perfect filmmaker to bring his story to modern audiences and transport us to a time when a special American athlete could write his own legend in the world’s most grueling race without cheating the system.”
In addition to Maiden, which world premiered at the 2018 Toronto International Film Festival, Holmes has directed the Emmy- and BAFTA-nominated mini-series House of Saddam, and the three-part BBC series Dunkirk, for which he won his first BAFTA as a director.
MRC Non-Fiction was launched in October 2019 and is led by former Universal Pictures executive Dey. The non-scripted film unit is also currently in post-production on Edgar Wright’s debut feature documentary about the legendary American duo Sparks.