HOLD FAST (feature)
When 14 year-old Michael’s parents are killed in a car accident, he and his little brother are split up and Michael is sent to live with relatives in a city far removed from his beloved fishing village. In addition to the harbour pursuits that formed the backbone of his daily life, Michael also leaves his adored grandfather – his last connection to the life that went before.
Michael makes an effort to adjust to the city in spite of Uncle Ted, who has rejected the out-ports in favour of a rigidly material urban life. He buries his insecurities by running his home like an army barracks. Michael forms an uneasy friendship with his cousin, the bookish Curtis and meets the sweetly effervescent Brenda, his first love.
But Michael, hot tempered and righteous, is taunted for his accent and his country ways. When he goes ballistic and knocks a kid out cold he and his uncle have a terrible fight and Michael decides to run away. He plans to survive alone in the Newfoundland wilderness, thereby proving his independence. Curtis, also longing for freedom, begs to join him on the lam.
They hitchhike their way across the island, ‘borrowing’ a car at Gander airport to take them deep inside a deserted national park. Michael has become obsessed by a quest to find a secret place that his father loved. As the two boys head into the wilderness on foot, their journey proves more revealing, and more dangerous than either could have imagined.
Adapted from the classic coming-of-age novel by Kevin Major, Hold Fast was instantly hailed as “a landmark in Canadian writing for young people; a stunningly perceptive novel”. Michael has been compared to both Holden Caulfield and Huck Finn. Hold Fast will appeal to the same general audience that loved the 80′s classic Stand By Me. Hold Fast will shoot in Newfoundland, in May of 2012, directed by Justin Simms (Down to the Dirt) and written and produced by Rosemary House.
Hold Fast will be released theatrically in Canada in 2013.