Richard Wagamese chose Dennis Foon to adapt Indian Horse for the big screen. Foon also wrote the screenplay for Life Above All, winner of the Prix Francois Chalais at the 2010 Cannes Film Festival and Oscar-shortlisted. He co-wrote Long Life, Happiness and Prosperity (starring Sandra Oh).
He’s received many international awards for his screenplays, which include Little Criminals, White Lies, Torso, The Terry Fox Story, A Shine of Rainbows, On The Farm, and Indian Horse. An internationally produced playwright, he has received the British Theatre Award, two Chalmers awards, and a Governor General’s Literary Award nomination for his plays. His award-winning trilogy of novels, The Longlight Legacy, has been published in five countries. His latest feature film, Sawah, a Luxembourg/Belgium/Egypt co-production, is slated for 2018 release. Websites: indianhorse.ca and dennisfoon.com.
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Interviews and Articles:
- “But Wagamese gave the Indian Horse script and its filmmakers his blessing before he died last year, and since then, Indigenous leaders from across Canada have lent the project their support” – In Maclean‘s
Indian Horse Screenplay
An adaptation of Richard Wagamese’s award-winning novel, this moving and important drama sheds light on the dark history of Canada’s residential schools and the indomitable spirit of Indigenous people.
In late 1950s Ontario, eight-year- old Saul Indian Horse is torn from his Ojibway (Anishinaabe) family and committed to one of Canada’s notorious Catholic Residential Schools. In this oppressive environment, Saul is denied the freedom to speak his language or embrace his Indigenous heritage while he witnesses horrendous abuse at the hands of the very people entrusted with his care. Despite this, Saul finds salvation in the unlikeliest of places and favourite Canadian pastime — hockey.
Fascinated by the game, he secretly teaches himself to play, developing a unique and rare skill.
His talent leads him away from the misery of the school, eventually to the pros. But the ghosts of Saul’s past are always present, and threaten to derail his promising career and future. Forced to confront his painful past, Saul draws on the spirit of his ancestors and the understanding of his friends to begin the healing process.