Penticton’s Memorial Arena has found its place at the Hockey Hall of Fame.
The historic rink is where Stanley Cup Odyssey, a 3-D short feature was being filmed this past week by Network Entertainment that will be shown at the Hockey Hall of Fame theatre in Toronto. It is expected to premiere during the 2012 Hall of Fame induction weekend in November.
Stanley Cup Odyssey tells the story of a group of young men who play their regular pick-up game at the local arena with amazing skill and grace, while they share their own personal favourite Stanley Cup moments. As the players reminisce and attempt to emulate their hockey heroes, the on-ice action will stylishly transition to incredible Stanley Cup goals scored by the game’s most iconic players: Wayne Gretzky, Mario Lemieux and Bobby Orr. Derik Murray, founder and CEO of Network Entertainment, said it is a unique production and exciting capturing sports in 3-D on the ice with the players.
“We are able to film the game like it has never been seen before so it is really exciting. Every single take that we finish we look at it on the monitors and you can feel the energy not only from the crew, but the players themselves are so blown away to be part of it. It is going to be really, really cool,” said Murray.
A mix of original live action, computer generated animation and classic archival footage of some of the most renowned moments in Stanley Cup history will be showcased in the film. Stanley Cup winner and B.C. native, Ryan Walter, is assisting with the on-ice co-ordination.
“The depth of field and things we are doing with high-speed action as well with 3-D is really exploiting 3-D. We want the audience to have the wow factor, so when that puck gets shot we want them to duck. When there is a big hit we want them to feel it. We are really creating this movie, very intentionally, to have that wow factor,” said Murray.
Darren Mann, who is a cast member in the film, played hockey with the Summerland Sting when he was 15 and a few games with the Penticton Vees. He graduated from Pen High and went on to play single A pro in Chicago before a shoulder injury took his hockey dream away from him. Mann then turned back to his second love, acting, and landed a part in Stanley Cup Odyssey.
“It’s awesome,” he said of being casted. “When you grow up playing hockey you want to get in the Hall of Fame and win the Stanley Cup. I never could playing hockey, but now I get to act like I do and it’s going to be shown at the Hall of Fame. It’s pretty cool.
He joins a list of hockey players from all over western Canada that come from the junior A, AHL and WHL ranks. Penticton Vees captain Troy Stecher is getting his first break as an actor. He was casted to the film as a late addition. Stecher decided to spend his summer in Penticton to train for the upcoming season and was in the right place at the right time to earn his spot in the Hall of Fame. The Vees captain said in the film his team wins and he assists on the winning goal. To top it off, a special guest appearance by the Stanley Cup for its close up on Stanley Cup Odyssey on Monday had him grinning ear-to-ear.