A burned out and bitter NHL Hockey Player turned hockey scout named BOBBY HAWKINS is on a desperate mission to find the next big hockey star, somebody better than he was in his prime when he played for the Maple Leafs. His journey leads him to a northern lake in a town in the middle of nowhere that claims to have seen a "Phantom Skater" on its frozen lake zipping by "faster than a Buick". With his big league team in the tank, Bobby needs to find talent fast but he isn't ready to face his ex-wife who runs the only bed and breakfast in town. Worse yet, she's in love with another hockey scout from Florida who's in competition with Bobby. Aided by a neurotic sushi-eating Aboriginal sidekick guide, Bobby scours the frozen lake and the local town arenas to find the legendary Phantom Skater, only to discover that he's still madly in love with his ex-wife and a failure at his job.
2. Why did you decide to write this screenplay?
We were aware that there was starting to be a lot of attention on hockey films being made so we thought we would give it a try. We felt that we might have a better chance to see the film made if we were able to write a true Canadian Hockey movie.
3. How long have you been writing screenplays?
Byron has been writing screenplays for the last 17 yrs.
4. What film have you seen the most in your life?
“It’s a Wonderful Life” is the movie Byron has seen the most which inspired the theme for “Phantom Skater”.
5. What artist in the film industry would you love to work with?
6. Who was your hero growing up?
7. Ideally, where would you like to be in 5 years?
Shooting my third (3rd) film.
8. Describe your process; do you have a set routine, method for writing?
I treat it as a job. Once I have decided to begin writing a story I normally have a rough outline drawn up. Then I begin work at 8:00 am and write until 1:00 pm. and if I start by writing only one page the first day, that’s fine. I go into work the following day same time and continue. If I work five days a week and average even 2 pages a day by the end of the week I have 10 pages and in 10 weeks I have a first draft.
I never write myself out at the end of the day. I always have a good idea what the next scene will be the following day or instead of writing it I’ll save it for the next day so I have something to start with, like priming a well. And I only write for approx. 5 hours a day because it gives me an opportunity to use the rest of the day to think about my story and what I want to achieve the next day.
9. Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?
Directing. I am an award winning film director and I write to direct.
10. What influenced you to enter the WILDsound Script Contest?
I’ve entered a couple of screenplays to be reviewed and I was very satisfied with my readers report for only $ 40 dollars! That’s a deal you can beat anywhere!
11. Any advice or tips you’d like to pass on to other writers?
Be open to feedback and critic. Don’t be overly emotional attached to the story that you’re not willing to compromise. There is no harm in listen and no one is forcing you to change anything unless you want to… they’re just words.