“The Challenges of Filming ‘The Loneliest Whale’ Documentary

Patricia Thomson

July 15, 2021

"You never forget your first time seeing a whale," director Joshua Zeman says in The Loneliest Whale: The Search for 52. His was as a kid working on a sailing ship. But the impetus behind this documentary came years later, after he read about a solitary whale that couldn’t communicate because his call was at a different frequency from every other whale: 52 hertz. Dubbed 52, he’d been roaming the ocean for decades, his song unanswered.

"You never forget your first time seeing a whale," director Joshua Zeman says in The Loneliest Whale: The Search for 52. His was as a kid working on a sailing ship. But the impetus behind this documentary came years later, after he read about a solitary whale that couldn’t communicate because his call was at a different frequency from every other whale: 52 hertz. Dubbed 52, he’d been roaming the ocean for decades, his song unanswered.