A movie about the healing of Bathurst, N.B., after it lost seven young basketball players and a teacher in a highway crash, will be a story of triumph, not tragedy, a producer says.
Rick LeGuerrier and his partner at Dreamstreet Pictures, Tim Hogan, are producing the made-for-TV movie about the aftermath of the boys basketball team's horrific accident in 2008.
Members of the high school team were returning to Bathurst after a game in Moncton, N.B., when their van veered into the path of a transport truck on a slush-covered highway.
The crash devastated Bathurst and gripped the country.
"The tragedy got international attention," LeGuerrier said. "I mean it touched us all."
However, the focus of the movie will be the team's efforts to rebuild after the tragedy and what happened one year after the crash.
"Clearly, the community is reeling from it, but we concentrate on these players — and the people in this community watching this team — come together and ultimately win this championship," LeGuerrier said.
The team won the provincial basketball championships the year after the accident..
"The community started to rally around them as they went through that season and we just thought that is just an inspiring story, an uplifting story."
LeGuerrier said the producers hope to shoot most, if not all, of the movie in Bathurst to bring economic development to the community.
Shooting will begin in October.
The movie, tentatively entitled The Phantoms, is expected to be shown on CBC Television next year.