The Story

Narrated by Emmy-winner Julianna Margulies, The Last Gold is a feature-length documentary film that reveals one of the greatest untold stories in Olympic swimming history. Forty years ago, at the 1976 Montreal Games, a team of doped East German athletes thrashed their rivals from the United States, until a remarkable final race. The central player was a transcendent American athlete denied her due and since lost in time: Shirley Babashoff.  Babashoff and her teammates were surrogates in a Cold War struggle, who battled a tragic conspiracy with a blazing honesty and a ferocious, endless tenacity.  


In 1976, the U.S. Olympic swim team entered the Games in Montreal looking forward to its usual dominance. The men did not disappoint, delivering the most dominant performance in Olympic swimming history. They won every race but one, and in that race won the silver and bronze medals. For the women, it was a completely different story. They were overwhelmed by an East German machine that had emerged on the world stage leading up to the Games with frighteningly fast performances. In a competition where 15 American records were set, the U.S. women had only four silver medals and one bronze medal to show for it.


After an entire competition of disappointing results, winning no races and facing a critical media that heaped on additional pressure, the U.S. women finally came together to do as a team what they could not do individually. It was the final race when four women stepped to the blocks in an attempt to do what nobody thought possible… win The Last Gold. 


This is their story.