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5 Most Successful Movies Based on Athletes

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World Athletics Day 2021 is being celebrated on Friday, May 7. The International Amateur Athletic Federation (IAAF) started celebrating World Athletics Day to promote participation in sports among the youngsters. It comes under IAAF’s social responsibility project, called ‘Athletics for a Better World’. It was first celebrated in 1996 and the event launched by then IAAF president Primo Nebiolo.

On World Athletics day, we take a look at the five most successful movies around lives of athletes:

Bhaag Milkha Bhaag

The 2013 movie Bhaag Milkha Bhaag is based on the life of legendary Indian sprinter Milkha Singh. Also known as ‘The Flying Sikh’, he was the first Indian athlete to win an individual athletics gold medal at the Commonwealth Games. He won the yellow metal in 1958 in 400m. Milkha became a superstar after he finished fourth in the 1960 Olympic Games in 440m.

Paan Singh Tomar

The film is based on the true story of a runner employed by the Army. Tomar won a Gold medal at the Indian National Games. However, later he was forced to become a notorious ‘baaghi’. The film is directed by Tigmanshu Dhulia and was released in 2012.

Chariots of Fire

Chariots of Fire is counted as one of the best movies of all time and not just the best athletics film. The movie was released in 1981. The film revolves around the story of two British athletes at the 1924 Olympics: Eric Liddell and Harold Abrahams. While Liddell is a devout Scottish Christian, Harold Abrahams is an English Jew.


The 2014 US war film Unbroken is produced and directed by Angelina Jolie. It is based on a non-fiction book by Laura Hillenbrand published in 2010. The film revolves around the story of USA Olympian and army officer, Louis Zamperini.

The Terry Fox Story

The movie ‘The Terry Fox Story’ is based on the life of Terry Fox. The film was released in 1983 and it captures the struggle of the cancer amputee hero who decided to run across Canada on only one leg to raise money for cancer research.

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