The documentary “Hockey 24”, a welcome return to Canada’s flagship game


“What we actually found are so many stories about hockey, you will find that these are actually stories about Canadians and humanity – and the life lessons that hockey teaches its players, what be inclusion, be it hard work, be it teamwork, be it dedication, “he added.

“And so in many ways, while humanity is now under duress, I think this is the perfect time to tell this story that is wrapped up in our nation’s game. “

For Hayes Steinberg, creative director of the agency The Mark who edited the film, “Hockey 24” documents the connections through sport.

“What makes it particularly relevant now is more than ever that these links allow us to get through this moment,” said Steinberg, who is the executive producer of the film.

Scotiabank asked Canadians to submit videos and personal photos from November 17 that demonstrated their love of hockey. And he sent 25 documentary film crews to add to this sequence, each with plans to document between three and 15 people.

The result is a tribute to hockey – and the role it plays in Canadian life.

It’s a chronological look at the day. The 12 minutes made available to the media before the film is fully broadcast on May 24 on television (it will also be available on May 25 on the Hot Docs site) documents the centuries-old ritual of families who get up early to go to the ice rink

It’s full of coffee, yawning and the anticipation of hitting the ice, not to mention the worker who turns on the lights at the neighborhood skating rink.

“If I’m not here to work and not here to watch or not here to coach, I’m home to watch (hockey),” says Dean Bevan, supervisor of the Galt Arena Gardens in Cambridge, Ontario, who goes back to 1922. “It’s something you enjoy doing, so it’s not a job. “

One of the many stories told is the courageous Quinn Kinsella, a member of the Ontario Flamborough Sabers, who suffers from cystic fibrosis – the most common fatal genetic disease in Canadian children and young adults.

Hearing an emotional Ryan Kinsella, Quinn’s father, describe his nine-year-old son’s frustration with the illness that is hitting your heart.

But hockey is her son’s paradise.

“You would never know that Quinn had cystic fibrosis. He lives everyday like all other kids, “said Greg Large, his trainer. “As a coach, you feel so good about the things he can do on and off the ice. And when you see it, it makes you proud that you are part of his life. “

The documentary also tells stories from the LGBTQ community, new Canadians and people with physical disabilities, among others.

The filmmakers chose November 17 in part because there were a number of events Scotiabank was involved in and because the date worked for some of the hockey names involved.

“He ticked all the boxes in a very lucky way,” said Steinberg.

There is a Scotiabank brand image in the film through “Scotiabank teammates” Cassie Campbell-Pascall, Lanny McDonald, Natalie Spooner and Darcy Tucker.

Tucker, a former Maple Leaf favorite, is shown as coach of his son’s Toronto AAA bantam team.

The filmmaker entered the day with a plan, knowing where their documentary teams were going.

“But when we opened it up across Canada … we really didn’t know what to expect,” said Steinberg.

They have received “thousands” of submissions, which produce hundreds of hours of film.

“We were very pleasantly surprised but also very touched by the intimacy of the stories we received,” said Braganza. “It’s absolutely wonderful to see how hockey connects us as a nation. And you see that within 90 minutes. “

The producers softened the pot for video participants by offering prizes for a paid trip to the NHL All-Star Game as well as $ 24,000 in funding for a community hockey team or association.

This report from The Canadian Press was first published on May 11, 2020.

Follow @NeilMDavidson on Twitter

Neil Davidson, The Canadian Press


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