Marina Zenovich realized early on in shooting the series that Armstrong wasn’t exactly going to be forthcoming or open during the interview process.
And in Armstrong’s own words, he was sharing with the documentary filmmaker “his truth”, which isn’t always the truth.
No director wants a subject that’s distracted while being interviewed. In the early days of making the documentary, Zenovich was confronted with that issue on a daily basis.
She did, thankfully, find the root cause of the distraction and shared a little trick wit Insider that she used to get Lance Armstrong to open up for his ESPN documentary.
In the 18 months director Marina Zenovich spent following Lance Armstrong around for the ESPN documentary “Lance,” there was one truth she found out very quickly: You have to let Armstrong have a good workout before you can expect to get anything out of him in an interview.
“It was almost like he couldn’t focus completely until he had that major workout,” Zenovich said. “We learned that and scheduled a workout.”
“He needed to get it out,” Zenovich told Insider. “If he didn’t, he would be antsy to go exercise.”
As much as I hate to admit being anything like Lance Armstrong, I’m the same way. For a guy like Armstrong, working out is his life and goes way beyond obsession.
The trick seems to have worked.
In part 1 of Lance, the disgraced cyclist admits to doping at the age of 21 and doesn’t rule out the possibility that taking growth hormone led to his testicular cancer.
Armstrong won seven straight Tour de France races and denied using performance-enhancing drugs for any of the victories.
He eventually came clean and confessed in 2013.
The second installment of 30 for 30: Lance airs this Sunday at 9pm on ESPN.