The Lion's Share

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30 for 30 Shorts: ‘Wilt Chamberlain: Borscht Belt Bellhop’

Our latest film, from Caroline Laskow and Ian Rosenberg, tells the story of the most important summer job in basketball history

Welcome back to our 30 for 30 documentary short series.

In 1954, before his senior year of high school, Wilt Chamberlain took a summer job as a bellhop at Kutsher’s Country Club, a Jewish resort in the Catskill Mountains. By day he was making $2 an hour and getting great tips from the awestruck guests as he lifted their luggage through a second-floor window … while standing outside on the ground. At night, he played on the Kutsher’s basketball team and was coached by the resort’s athletic director, Celtics coach Red Auerbach. Mixing rarely seen archival video and interviews with people who lived and worked with Wilt, this short chronicles a pivotal chapter in the life of one of the game’s greatest players, and gives a fascinating glimpse into a time when basketball met the Borscht Belt in its heyday.


Tommy and Frank, directed by Richie Keen »
Cutthroat, directed by Steven Cantor »
Silver Reunion, directed by Rory Karpf »
Holy Grail: The T206 Honus Wagner, directed by Nick and Colin Barnicle »
Disdain the Mundane, directed by Nelson George »
Ali: The Mission, directed by Amani Martin »
The Arnold Palmer, directed by Bryan Gordon »
Jake, directed by Jonathan Hock »
Arnold’s Blueprint, directed by Michael and Jeff Zimbalist »
Here Now, directed by Eric Drath ��

Filed Under: 30 For 30, Series