Slap Shot is a 1977 comedy film directed by George Roy Hill, written by Nancy Dowd and starring Paul Newman and Michael Ontkean. It depicts a minor league hockey team that resorts to violent play to gain popularity in a declining factory town. A perennial loser for years, the team’s manager Joe McGrath (Strother Martin) has resorted to cost-cutting techniques and promotional antics to keep local interest alive.
During a hopeless season, the Chiefs pick up the Hanson Brothers!
The Hansaon brothers, bespectacled violent goons with childlike mentalities, complete with toys in their luggage. Horrified at being given players who seem stupid, immature, and unreliable, Dunlop initially chooses not to play them.
The 40th Anniversary of Slap Shot!
The original screenplay Slap Shot by Nancy Dowd is based in part on her brother Ned Dowd’s experiences playing minor league hockey in the 1970s. This is during which time violence in the minors was the selling point of the game. Nancy Dowd used her brother Ned and a number of his Johnstown Jets teammates in Slap Shot. Ned Dowd portraying Syracuse goon Ogie Ogilthorpe. He later used the role to launch a career as a Hollywood character actor an assistant director and eventually a line producer. The characters of the Hanson Brothers are based on three actual brothers: Jeff, Steve, and Jack Carlson. The Hanson brothers played with Ned Dowd on the Jets. The character of Dave Killer Carlson is based on then-Jets player Dave Killer Hanson. Steve and Jeff Carlson played their Hanson brother counterparts in the film. By filming time Jack Carlson had been called up by the Edmonton Oilers the WHA to play in the playoffs. Dave Hanson moved into the role of Jack Hanson and actor Jerry Houser was hired for the role of Killer Carlson.
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