Ryan Suffern, head of documentaries for The Kennedy/Marshall Company, will serve as co-producer. “Boston” is scheduled for an April release to coincide with 121st Boston Marathon.
The race was launched in 1897 and is the oldest organized marathon in the world. Marshall — whose credits include “Raiders of the Lost Ark” and “Jurassic World” — noted Tuesday that he ran the Boston Marathon in 1980.
“Boston was everything I had hoped it to be, kind of the Olympics of marathoning for me,” Marshall said. “Boston, the people, the setting, the history, Bill Rodgers’ fourth victory, a PR of 2:45, and even Rosie (Ruiz), just made it the best and most memorable race of my career.”
Jon Dunham, known for his “Spirit of the Marathon” films, is directing “Boston.” The producer is Megan Williams, who received an Oscar nomination in 1988 for her short “Language Says It All.”
The film records the history of the Boston Marathon, from its origins in 1897 through the present day. The filmmakers have spent the last three years recording interviews with champions and amateur runners from around the world, as well as the stories of members of the Boston Marathon communities.
The production was granted exclusive documentary rights from the Boston Athletic Association to produce the film and to use the Association’s extensive archive of video, photos, and memorabilia.
Marshall has received best picture Oscar nominations for “Raiders of the Lost Ark,” “The Color Purple,” “Seabiscuit,” and “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.” He produced Steven Spielberg’s “The BFG,” Paul Greengrass’ “Jason Bourne,” and Clint Eastwood’s “Sully.” Marshall’s documentary credits include Martin Scorsese’s “The Last Waltz,” Alex Gibney’s “The Armstrong Lie,” and the Frank Sinatra documentary miniseries for HBO.
Suffern recently directed “Finding Oscar,” a feature-length documentary about the Dos Erres massacre in Guatemala, which he and Marshall produced together. The film is a co-production with the USC Shoah Foundation and is executive produced by Spielberg.
“We are excited about joining the ‘Boston’ team and helping to tell the story of the race, the runners, and the community that embraces a marathon like no other city,” Marshall said. “The legacy of this event has helped to shape the story of many champion runners. These are the stories that need to be told and preserved for generations to come.”
Lionsgate and CBS Films are releasing “Patriots Day,” starring Mark Wahlberg. The drama follows the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing. The movie will close the AFI Fest on Thursday and open in limited release on Dec. 21.