- One-hour CTV Original Documentary showcases the 2008 International
Paralympic Ice Sledge Hockey World Championships and the personal stories
of a Canadian team that is determined to win -
TORONTO, Sept. 22 /CNW/ - For Olympic athletes, sport is life, and for
the 18 men who represent Canada on the world stage in sledge hockey, being a
paraplegic athlete is no different. In their version of the full-contact
sport, the players battle their opponents with bone-breaking intensity,
gliding along the ice in titanium sleds, striving to score points with
passionate fervor. On the heels of the closing ceremonies of the 2008 Beijing
Paralympics last week - and with the torch being passed to Vancouver in 2010 -
the new CTV Original Documentary, Sledhead: Canada's Sledge Hockey Team
premieres Saturday, October 4 at 7 p.m. ET (visit ctv.ca for local listings).
Sledhead is a story about Canada's national sledge hockey team who are
set to defend their gold medal title, after winning it all at the 2006
Paralympics in Torino. The story, like the men who play the sport, is
hard-hitting and dramatic, offering an up-close, gritty look at a competitive
season, and the personal stories of the athletes who are determined to win at
(xx) Media Note (xx) - Download photos from Sledhead at ctvmedia.ca.
With the 2008 World Championships in Boston on the horizon, B.C.
filmmakers David McIlvride and Alison Love tail Canada's ice sledge hockey
team throughout the previous season, uncovering the rivalries among players
and teams that builds to an exciting climax in Canada's final game against
longtime rivals Norway. As the players' fate and place in the history books
comes down to mere seconds on the ice, the ongoing drama of the players'
day-to-day personal lives is revealed.
The players are as different as the disabilities that brought them
together as a team. Each man, whether born with a disability, or come to it by
accident, has learned to live through adversity. They joke amongst themselves
about separating the "amps" and the "wheelies" into separate dressing rooms.
But one thing is certain: the men have bonded into a unique and sometimes
dysfunctional family with a single purpose - to be World Champions in their
Paul's story began as a 15-year-old boy with dreams of playing in the
NHL. He was a good hockey prospect until two life-changing falls on the ice, a
ravaging infection and near death experience left him without a leg. "Best day
of my life," he says. "I lost my leg, but started a whole new life playing the
best game in the world, representing my country in the Olympics."
Twenty-two-year-old Greg is the team's most valuable player, but his
personal life is a shamble, "I lay awake and think about things like... I've
been out on four dates with this girl and she still has no clue that I don't
have feet... I should really tell her." Born with twisted feet, his parents
made the decision to amputate them when he was an infant rather than have him
use a walker for the rest of his life. In a dramatic turn of events, Greg -
who is being groomed to be a leader on the team - is ousted from the league
just weeks into the season. Suspended for a year from a team who desperately
needs him, his case gets turned around and his suspension is reduced allowing
him to play - a decision that will have a dramatic impact on the team's
fortunes at the World Championships.
In addition to smashing each other on the ice, these men smash every
stereotype about a disabled person. With fierce rivalry and unforgettable
characters set amidst the hockey arena as a background, Sledhead is a
documentary about a remarkable team of athletes, and even more remarkable men.
Sledhead is written and directed by David McIlvride and Alison Love, and
is produced by Gabriel Films North Inc. in association with CTV Inc. Bob
Culbert is Vice-President of CTV Documentaries. Robert Hurst is President of
CTV News and Current Affairs. Susanne Boyce is President, Content, Creative
and Channels, CTV Inc.
CTV, Canada's largest private broadcaster, offers a wide range of quality
news, sports, information, and entertainment programming. It has the
number-one national newscast, CTV National News With Lloyd Robertson, and is
the number-one choice for prime-time viewing. CTVglobemedia Inc. is Canada's
premier multi-media company which owns CTV Inc. and The Globe and Mail. CTV
Inc. also owns radio stations across the country, and leading national
specialty channels. Other CTVglobemedia investments include an interest in
Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment, and in Dome Productions, a North American
leader in the provision of mobile high definition production facilities. More
information about CTV may be found on the company website at www.ctv.ca.
For further information:
For further information: Beth Lockley, Publicist, CTV Inc., (416)
332-4583 or firstname.lastname@example.org; Julie Dossett, Unit Publicist, (416) 894-4370 or