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Hockey enforcer film finally ready

August 2, 2016 9:56 A.M.
Former Rocket Scott Parker on the set of Ice Guardians.


It's been eight years of battles, eight years of waiting, but Adam Scorgie's baby is ready to be delivered.

Kelowna-born documentary producer and co-creator Adam Scorgie is finally set to release 'Ice Guardians', a film which focuses on the life of a hockey enforcer.

For a while, it didn't look as if this documentary would ever be released. He spent six years dealing with different executives within the NHL trying to get the footage he needed to complete the film.

That changed when he was introduced to the Fair Use Law.

"The general rule of thumb is, if you can get your hands on the footage without having to go to the source to get it, then you can use it," said Scorgie.

"And kindly provided us with everything we could ever need."

One year of filming and one year of editing later, 'Ice Guardians' is set for release later this summer.

The documentary will have its world premier Sept. 12 in Toronto. It will either debut as part of the Toronto International Film Festival, or independently.

"If TIFF doesn't program this, we are going to make sure they regret not doing it. The guest list, with NHL brass, will be insane."

The film will be shown at the Metro Theatre in Edmonton Sept. 15 and here in Kelowna at the Grand 10 on Thursday, Sept. 29.

A majority of ticket sales from the Kelowna showing will go towards anti-bullying.

"These enforcers themselves felt they were the guys who prevented bullies from taking liberties on their team," explained Scorgie.

The film itself chronicles the life of the hockey enforcer through the eyes, and the words of those who lived it.

"Whether somebody agrees with fighting in hockey or not, it's just there to honour the roll's history in the game.

"The very first NHL sanctioned game ended in a line-clearing brawl. This honours the story of those who made their dreams come true, embracing this role, which as we all know is a very difficult role physically and emotionally."

And, the list of players who agreed to take part is like a whose who of that side of the game.

"We have all the different generations going back to Dave Semenko, Dave 'The Hammer' Schultz, Nick Fotiu, Joey Kocur, Wendell Clark.

"We also got superstars perspectives from Jerome Iginla, Brett Hull, Rick Tocchet. Then the more modern day enforcer like George Parros, Kevin Westgarth, Scott Parker, Todd Fedoruk. Forty-two interviews in all."

Scorgie's inspiration came back in his high school days when he went to school with Parker and Fedoruk, then members of the WHL's Kelowna Rockets.

Just watching what they went through, and how they rose through the ranks, said Scorgie.

"These guys gave everything to make their dreams come true. They gave everything and asked for nothing."

Scorgie said he was most proud of the reaction he got from the enforcer fraternity.

"We were told you guys are finally asking the right questions and seem to really care about our story. To this day, the last Gladiators that was done focuses more on Knuckles Nilan than it does on the whole enforcer role.

"We have seen nothing that encapsulates our story. There are comedies that spoof us and make us look silly."

Details of the Kelowna premier will be released soon.

Next up for Scorgie, whose credits include The Union, The Culture High, and The Good Son, is a documentary chronicling the life of daredevil Robbie Knievel.

"Chasing Evel, The Robbie Knievel Story." is another fascinating story ... much darker. In the daredevil community, they say Evel broke bones and Robbie broke records. But everybody knows Evel Knievel and not many people know Robbie Knievel.

That will be released later this year.

In September, Scorgie will begin production on a bio-pic on actor Danny Trejo, best known for his role in Machete.

"It's like Ray Mancini's where, if it wasn't real and you put it in dramatic film, this is crazy, nobody has a life like this.

"Armed robberies at 13, supposed to be executed in a gas chamber in his 20's, and know, at 73, he's one of the most successful Mexican-American actors in Hollywood history."

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