The Hockey FilmA Documentary by Christopher Aylward

VIEW TRAILER
POSITION
Goaltender
FAVOURITE TEAM
Edmonton Oilers
WORK AS
Filmmaker
COMPANY
Cinematic North

The Filmmaker

/CHRISTOPHER AYLWARD

For as long as I can remember, I’ve been interested and invested in two things in my life, hockey and film. I’ve been passionate about hockey since I was seven years old, and am still involved in the game today. As for film, I grew up loving to take photos and video with various cameras, working on my first cheesy “film projects” by grade six. To this day, I still have film footage from my later years in elementary school.

This interest took off in high school, when I quickly realized that I had only three things that were going to keep my attention in school; Sports, Computers, and Television Arts. To this day, I can say that if it wasn’t for my TV Arts Teacher, Mr. Tuff, I’m not sure what I’d be doing today.

It can be very overwhelming to create something that you’ll share with the world. I’m humbled by the amount of interest it has received thus far.

I hope you enjoy the film.

Hockey is a unique sport, in the sense that you need each and every guy helping each other, and pulling in the same direction to be successful.

- Wayne Gretzky -

About the Film

/Why the Documentary

From a love of the sport, The Hockey Film is a full-feature film documenting the lives of real, everyday people who “eat, sleep, and breathe hockey”. Featuring people like you, the film also showcases a glimpse into the lives of a few professionals, on how they fell in love with the sport.

The vision for this film comes from Christopher Aylward, an independent filmmaker, who happens to be a big hockey fan, and a proud hockey goalie. The film tells the true stories of various individuals, players, families, team reps, league commissioners, to owners of teams and clubs.

This grassroots film, once completed, will be first submitted to Film Festivals. The main target being the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF). Other various festivals will be sought out and submitted to. The filmmaker also has plans for private viewings before release. We are working on a release party both at home in Ontario, Canada, and abroad in New Zealand.

Do you live in or near Southern Ontario, Canada and want to be involved? Visit our Film Events page.

STORYTELLING

I have a passion for film and the art of telling a story. Be it a hockey classic like “Slapshot“, or some other great movies like “Mystery Alaska“, “The Mighty Ducks“, or “Youngblood“. To documentaries like “Ken Dryden’s Home Game“, or “HBO’s 24/7“, the life of hockey can be told in many ways, and The Hockey Film is another look into the game we love.

LOVE OF HOCKEY

My love of hockey has lasted nearly 35 years. From early childhood, though my teenage and young adult years, to present day, I’ve been around the game for a long time. We all share a love for hockey, and that love for the game, coupled with the passion I have for filmmaking, makes The Hockey Film an obvious result of my two worlds colliding.

CINEMA VERITE

The Hockey Film brings viewers a more intimate look into the lives of hockey people. From hard-working everyday folks like you and me, to a more down-to-earth conversation with some hockey professionals, told in a way that’s more relatable. It’s a film about the true grassroots of a game, as seen by various people with various backgrounds within it.

Statistics

4years of development
510hours of raw footage
2920hours of work
1goal

Progression

/A few key moments

Timeline
Jul 20

Local Involvement

2015

The Hockey Film begins conducting interviewed segments for the documentary. Those on-camera interviews feature local "everyday people" with a unique hockey story to tell.

Musicians

Looking for Local Talent

The filmmaker begins looking into showcasing local musical talents (solo, bands, etc.) that would be interested in having their track(s) as possible inclusion into The Hockey Film's final cut.

Nov 30
Jan 1

Winter “B-Roll”

2016

The film begins shooting b-roll footage for the film during the winter months.

The Beast

Former NHL'er

Former NHL Goaltender Allan Bester agrees on becoming involved with the film. The former Toronto Maple Leaf and fan favourite happens to be the idol of The Hockey Film's very own filmmaker, Christopher Aylward. The crew will travel down to Florida to film Bester's segment.

Apr 25
Jul 25

War Pigs

Oink Oink

The Hockey Film announces inclusion of the War Pigs, a highly-competitive local ball hockey team from Niagara, within the film. The film follows the team through various large-scale ball hockey tournaments, featuring player interviews along the way.

New Zealand Connection

Land of the Long White Cloud

The Hockey Film announces the addition of New Zealand's Backyard Hockey League (BHL) within the film. Also included in the announcement, is the additional inclusion of the West Auckland Admirals of the New Zealand Ice Hockey League (NZIHL).

May 26
Jan 6

Plaster Rock

2016

The Hockey Film announces it will travel to Plaster Rock, New Brunswick, as it will feature the World Pond Hockey Championship. The annual championship is a massive venue, visited and participated by people from all over the globe.

Haliburton

Pond Hockey

The Hockey Film announces that it will head out to Haliburton, Ontario, as it will feature the Canadian Pond Hockey Championships. The second pond hockey event added to the film, showcases another large venue of hockey players and fans alike.

Jan 18
Feb 4

Principal Photography Delayed

Weather Setback

Due in large part to a warm 2016/17 winter, The Hockey Film delays principal photography (outdoor) to the following winter. It continues secondary & b-roll shooting for the films' spring/summer/fall segments.

Walter Gretzky Tournament

Great Tournament, Great Cause

The Hockey Film is granted permission to include a segment featuring the Walter Gretzky Street Hockey Tournament. The filmmaker interviews the folks who run the tournament, the Ontario Lung Association, along with the hosts of the event, Ball Hockey International (BHI). A surprise guest is also interviewed for the film.

Jun 2
Oct 23

Puck Yeah! Podcast

Let's talk puck!

Chris sits down with Logan and Joe from the Puck Yeah! Podcast, down in New Zealand. The podcast has had a plethora of guests come on, and Chris was thrilled to not only talk about the film, but hockey life in general. The boys will also be featured within the film, during our New Zealand segment!

Principal Photography Resumes

Weather Boon

A early start to winter, accompanied by record-breaking temperatures has put the films outdoor principal shooting schedule back on track. The filmmaker begins shooting outdoor scenes, and starts to plan out outdoor pond hockey games locally, for inclusion in telling the story in the film.

Dec 22
Jan 9

New Zealand Segment Expands

The Kiwi Connection

As we connect the dots on the New Zealand Hockey Segment for the film, we take you on a journey with the New Zealand Under-20 National Team, as they prepare and compete for the 2018 World Junior Ice Hockey Championship Division III, held in Sofia, Bulgaria. We feature head coach Justin Daigle, as the team looks to overcome challenges, as these up-and-coming kiwis drive themselves to play the game they love.

Crew Reaches Haliburton

One-Day Shooting Marathon

The film crew set up to shoot "run & gun" style, as time constraints on the filmmakers end mean a one-day marathon. 4-hour drive, 6-hour shoot in wonderfully beautiful and harsh conditions, and 4-hour drive back. The film will return to Haliburton to continue the filming of this segment.

Feb 2
Feb 20

Post-Production Timeline Released

The Countdown is On!

The Hockey Film announces that the film will exit Principal Photography on February, 12th, 2019. On-going post-production will be completed by February 20th, 2019. The first submission upon completion, is to the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF). Other festivals and release plans yet to be released.

Timeline

Completion Estimate

60%Principle Photography
90%B-Roll
75%Audio
15%Post Production

Scheduled Completion of Post-Production:

weeks
5
2
days
0
0
hours
1
3
minutes
0
7
seconds
5
4

The Film Blog

/Our Journey

Stories
Feb 20

Film Update

Let the Countdown Commence!

February 20, 2018 - The Hockey Film announces that the film will reach the pre-release phase in February, 2019. The current timeline for the next 365 days is outlined as…

Read More

It’s time to Pond On!

Going back to the grassroots of the game.

The film continues production, as we look to begin shooting the segment on the Canadian National Pond Hockey Championships. The annual tournament, which hosts on two consecutive weekends to accommodate…

Read More

Jan 17
Jan 13

New Zealand Segment Expands

The Kiwi Connection

The New Zealand Under-20 National Team as they head for camp in Latvia.   The Hockey Film is happy to announce another side-story to the New Zealand segment of the…

Read More

Winterland Returns

The Frozen Playground

A blast of record-breaking cold Arctic air has blanketed Canada, and with it a return of a more scenic look and feel for the film. Hindered by two warm winters…

Read More

Dec 22
Oct 23

Puck Yeah! Podcast

Let's Talk Puck!

Back near the start of the hockey season, Chris was invited to sit down with Logan and Joe from the Puck Yeah! Podcast in New Zealand. Puck Yeah started as a…

Read More

The Story of Ed

Uplifting

The Hockey Film is excited to share the story of Ed. His unique and uplifting story will touch the hearts of the viewer, whether you're a hockey fan or not.…

Read More

Apr 4
Nov 30

The Beast

Allan Bester

The Hockey Film is happy to announce that longtime fan favourite, and former Toronto Maple Leaf goaltender, Allan Bester, has agreed to be involved with the film! Nicknamed "The Beast", Bester…

Read More

New Zealand Connection

Hockey-Loving Kiwi's

The Hockey Film is happy to announce a two-parter from the "land of the long white cloud" (or, if you're from Australia, "the land across the ditch"), New Zealand! We're…

Read More

May 26
Stories

testimonials

We're looking forward to seeing the final product, because the trailer is a visual journey into the world of outdoor hockey.
TSN’s BARDOWN
I can't wait to see a full-sized documentary on the lives of everyday hockey-loving people!
MARK IRVING
We're beyond excited to be involved. We've got a lot of people down here in New Zealand interested in your film!
CAM GREEN, BHL NEW ZEALAND
I can't wait to see how amazing this turns out to be!
JOHN WATSON

 

 

 

 

We're Social!

/Find and connect with us

We don’t post like crazy, because we’re putting our focus into making a film, but from time-to-time we like to keep you updated on the progress, and other exciting news. Hit us up, we’d love to have you!

 

Goaltending is a normal job, sure. How would you like it in your job if, every time you made a small mistake, a red light went on over your desk and 15,000 people stood up and yelled at you.

- Jacques Plante -

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