An Abbotsford high school football team and marching band have made it to the big leagues - but not in the manner one might imagine.
The W.J. Mouat Hawks football team and Mennonite Educational Institute Screaming Eagles marching band will appear on a new TV show premiering on CTV after the Super Bowl on Feb. 3.
The show, titled Motive, is an unconventional crime drama different than most in that it starts each episode by revealing to the audience not only the victim, but the killer as well.
The show unfolds as the lead detective and her team conduct a backwards chase for clues and navigate the maze of each murder to discover the how and why of it.
The Hawks and Screaming Eagles were recruited to appear in the first episode's opening scenes that feature a lively high school football game.
Hawks coach Denis Kelly said the Mouat team is headed for TV fame because its uniforms were the "right" colour.
"The company wanted a certain colour of jerseys. They had looked at various teams but wanted uniforms with red and gold," said Kelly.
As such, the entire football team got a day off school on Sept. 24 and was trucked out to Langley Secondary School where filming took place.
It was much the same story with MEI's Screaming Eagles, said band director Chad Joiner.
"They needed a marching band that needed to look a certain way, and it led to our involvement on the show because we're one of the few local bands that have a traditional uniform."
The band simply tweaked their uniforms and added some red accessories to meet to the required colour scheme, said Joiner.
The scene shot was a large one, that not only involved the football team running through agame and the marching band performing, but also large crowd scenes in the stands, said Kelly.
Despite missing a day of school the students involved got an invaluable lesson, said Joiner.
"The kids were terribly excited about being on TV for sure, but from an educational standpoint, it was a valuable learning experience around what's involved in a TV production."
Hawks receiver Keenan Godden, 18, who was filmed making a winning touchdown in the show, agreed.
"We were all really excited. It was a good experience because we got to go out there and see how a production works and all the cameras and stuff."
Hawks kicker Matt Riley said the experience affords him a new perspective when he watches a movie.
"Now I always think about that [shoot] and what goes on behind the scenes," said Riley.
The plot of the first episode of Motive focuses around the murder of a well-liked, karaoke-singing, high school teacher found murdered in his bedroom.
However, the apparent home invasion gone wrong doesn't hold water with the show's detective, played by actor Kristin Lehman, who eventually focuses on one of the dead teacher's students, a serial thief known only as "The Creeper."
Both Godden and Riley said it was fun to be TV stars for a day.
"They filmed me for a touchdown pass and we did chest bumps and a dance thing," said Godden.
"It wasn't as good as working for a touchdown yourself, but felt pretty good for a freebie."
Godden said he'd even consider a career as an actor.
"I'd love to be a TV star. That'd be great," he said.
But he's got a fallback plan in place.
"I'd love to play football professionally or become an RCMP officer. That's what I'm going to university for."
The entertainment industry's bright lights, however, haven't turned Riley.
"It's not where I want to be. My goal is to go to college as a football player, and if that doesn't work out, I want to be a fireman."
Although he and his teammates may have done a little bragging about their experience, it didn't make much difference with members of the opposite sex.
"No, it didn't help much with the girls," Riley said.
"But it's a good thing to be able to say in the future that I was in the movies."
- The new CTV crime drama Motive premiers its first episode, titled Creeping Tom, immediately after the Super Bowl on Sunday, Feb. 3.