One of the most iconic characters from the cult 1970s film Slapshot will be coming to life in a new Canadian short film entitled Ogilthorpe.
Ogie Ogilthorpe, the villainous goon who cameos in the conclusion of Slapshot, was a character based on real-life goon Bill “Goldie” Goldthorpe.
Like in Slapshot, the real Ogilthorpe’s legend precedes him. When Goldthorpe played his fists did the talking and his bleach blond afro had the potential to make clowns blush. He once threatened Don Cherry and got away with it. And while incarcerated in Syracuse during the American Hockey League season, coaching staff from his team would escort Goldthorpe back and forth from prison between games.
The film, which was shot in Humboldt, Saskatchewan, is the brainchild of, executive producer, Dave Fergusson. Fergusson thinks that style of rock ‘em, sock ‘em hockey featured in the film is a thing of the past.
“It was the wild west back then. He [Goldthorpe] was the wildest, most unpredictable player in the league back then. He was the fiercest goon ever to play the game of hockey,” said Fergusson.
Fergusson has been transfixed by legend of Ogilthorpe for some time now.
“That’s the beauty of Ogilthorpe. The beauty of his life story is the drama — and it’s both on the ice and off the ice. There are incidents where this guy went to a rink in a different league to watch a hockey game and he’s a member of neither team and ends up getting involved with the brawl.”
Saskatoon fitness trainer and former hockey player Kelly Riou plays the legend of Ogilthorpe. The resemblances between the actor and man in real life are striking.
“I have a curly Afro myself but I keep it completely short because I don’t like the curls and the next thing I know they’re taking it right back to where it was and blond to boot.”
- In Slapshot, Ogilthorpe’s name is mentioned more than any other character’s in the movie. His name is dropped roughly 20 times over seven scenes.
- “Ogilthorpe” opens with Goldie lacing up his skates in a prison cell. He was released from jail a number of times to play hockey. His coach picked him up at jail and returned him after the game.
- In 1973-74, Goldie’s rookie season as a professional, he had 25 major penalties before Christmas while playing left wing for the Syracuse Blazers. He had 285 minutes in penalties in 55 regular-season games that season.
- Off-ice drama. Goldie was shot once and would have died had it not been for his superb conditioning and was also stabbed and needed 300 stitches on another occasion.
- Goldie once tried out for the Toronto Maple Leafs and Pittsburgh Penguins.