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New Brunswick Documentary Showcase (Change & Adventure): 12 Dogs Drive
November 11 @ 4:00 pm
12 Dogs Drive – The Run Home
Director: Chet Wesley
Producer: Jessica Jennings
Writer: Chet Wesley, Lauchlan Ough, Dominique van Olm
Saint John, NB, Canada, 2018
Six years ago, Justin Allen left his New Brunswick home looking for a fresh start in Vancouver as a film set hairdresser. Taking his time to find his way, one of his long stops was Winnipeg, and the subarctic town of Churchill, Manitoba. Accessible only by air, biweekly train and ice roads, Churchill is an isolated place famous for its native peoples, polar bears, whales, and northern lights−all the reasons why Justin was there. Only for him, it turned into one love affair after another and an entirely new journey. Vancouver vanished.
On his first day in Churchill, he went on a dogsled excursion with David Daley, of Wapusk
Adventures, and fell in love with the dogs and never left. Working with Daley, he learned everything about caring and training sled dogs becoming a competitive musher himself. With three years under his belt, he started to breed and train his own team of dogs, and prepare to return to his home in Saint John the only way he wanted to do it, with his dogs. With his Cree fiancé Danielle Sinclair and his Churchill friend Phil DeSilva as crew support, he and his twelve dogs set out on the 3,500 km, three-month journey through the tundra, over and around Hudson Bay, down through Quebec, and into New Brunswick. Facing the bitter cold of the arctic winter and into the melting snow of spring, Justin, his dogs and his crew faced many obstacles requiring on-the-spot adaptation and ingenuity.