At the Sundance Film Festival last week, the Slater brothers announced their new project: a documentary honoring the story of Colgate’s legendary 1990 men’s hockey team.
The team – which advanced to the national championship – reached new heights under the coaching of the brothers’ late father, Terry Slater.
Grant Slater ’91 and his brothers, Todd and Wade, who collectively founded Slater Brothers Entertainment, grew up watching their father work his magic in the Colgate community. The hockey team celebrated 251 wins during Terry Slater’s 15-year tenure as head hockey coach, winning 31 games in the 1990 season.
“This is a tale of David versus Goliath, and how walk-on players, transfers, a group of unknown freshmen and their fiery coach reached incredible success one magical season,” Grant Slater told The Syracuse Post-Standard newspaper. “It is a story that will inspire athletes at any level and illustrate that the expectation to succeed is a powerful tool.”
Though the Raiders were defeated by Wisconsin in the championship game on April 1, 1990, they were the first team in the history of Colgate athletics to make it to the finals of a NCAA tournament (succeeded next by the 2003 football team).
“This is a true underdog story,” local filmmaker Kenny MacBain, who will partner with the Slater brothers on the project, told The Post-Standard. “It’s a story like Miracle on Ice or Hoosiers — it happened once, and people haven’t seen something like that in 20 years.”
Nonetheless, this documentary – to be titled The General – isn’t the only way the Slater brothers have paid tribute to the Colgate and Hamilton communities.
Two years ago, they founded the Hamilton International Film Festival, with the purpose of bringing a “fun event back to the town we grew up in,” according to Grant Slater.
Many residents are already gearing up for this year’s festival, which will run Aug. 4 – 7 and include charity events supporting local causes.
• Syracuse Post-Standard story
• Film fans find plenty to like at Hamilton festival