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Posted: Feb 17, 2012 ANDREW WALL'S CHAMPION CITY FEATURED IN THE SPEC
This article of The Spec features one of our members documentary, Andrew Wall's Champion City.
WINNIPEG The year was 1896 and the Stanley Cup looked more like a simple silver fruit bowl than the multi-tiered trophy NHLers hoist today. Frederick Arthur Stanley, the hockey-loving governor general who donated the challenge cup to recognize Canada’s best amateur team, left for his home in England only three years earlier.
But the cup itself had never left Montreal. That is until an upstart team from Western Canada issued a challenge, then had the audacity to win 2-0 and take the cup back to Winnipeg, where the first Stanley Cup parade soon followed. And so began the Stanley Cup’s travels around North America as hockey’s supreme object of desire.
The story of the Winnipeg Victorias and their first Stanley Cup win (they had two more) has been told in Champion City, a documentary by Winnipeg’s Farpoint Films. “To have the wild and woolly west show up and take a trophy like that from you, it sort of sparked the imagination of everybody across Canada,” said Andrew Wall, the man behind the 30-minute documentary. “Every league, every hockey team was like ‘Hey, we can vie for this national cup.’”He said he saw the dusty banners that hung in the rafters of the old Winnipeg Arena years ago, heralding the exploits of the Victorias.
But he basically forgot about them until researching another documentary, when he came upon an account of the 20th anniversary of that 1896 game. “We somehow forgot the story behind it and the relevance and maybe because it’s not an eastern story, it’s a Winnipeg story,” he said. “It was so relevant to the game of hockey and so crucial to the game of hockey.” The Victorias are a local legend but some of the players are national legends.
Read the rest of the article here.