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UWinnipeg filmmaker releases third documentary

Going Platinum is an in-depth look at one of the more unconventional charity drives in Winnipeg

University of Winnipeg videographer Will Jones has released his third documentary film, Going Platinum: The Story of the Platinum Jets.

University of Winnipeg videographer Will Jones has released his third documentary film.

The core group of Platinum Jets were all a group of guys from the north end of Winnipeg who attended and matriculated through the University of Winnipeg.

Will Jones

Following Iced: The Lost History of Hockey at The University of Winnipeg and Schmockey Night, Going Platinum: The Story of the Platinum Jets is an in-depth look at one of the more unconventional charity drives in Winnipeg — the Platinum Jets Charity Hockey Tournament.

“As a long time employee at UWinnipeg, I like telling UWinnipeg stories,” said Jones, who’s a Studio Production Technician at the Centre for Academic Technology.

“The formula I follow as a filmmaker in these lost or unknown histories is to dig into the research first, locate key individuals and interview them, and collect any pertinent material they have for the film.”

The Platinum Jets are a group whose love of hockey led them to form a co-ed intramural hockey team after graduating.

“The core group of Platinum Jets were all a group of guys from the north end of Winnipeg who attended and matriculated through the University of Winnipeg,” Jones explained. “And in their educational charity work, they support graduating high school students from those same high schools they came from. As an alumnus of St. Johns High School, this was particularly poignant for me.”

They transitioned their work into a golf tournament for charity, raising money for numerous causes but principally to support students from north end high schools to go to post-secondary institutions like UWinnipeg.

Looking forward, Jones is continuing with documentary filmmaking and is currently working on a piece about a beloved Winnipeg landmark — the Hudson’s Bay Company store.

“(It’s) a love letter to the malt shop in the basement of the Bay and other restaurants as well,” he explained. “This piece has national potential, as I’ve uncovered in my research so far that every landmark Bay in Canada had similar versions of what we had, so people all over the country can engage in the nostalgia.”

Jones hopes he can inspire other UWinnipeg filmmakers, as there is a “plethora of talent” from the creative to the academic at the institution.

One of Jones’ favourite local filmmakers, Ryan Steel, a graduate of UWinnipeg and colleague in the production studio, is an example of the talent at this institution, “from the creative to the academic.”

“I’m always so impressed when the UWinnipeg Film Festival comes around every year,” Jones said. “It’s critical to foster up-and-coming artists so their work can resonate in the wider community in the future and prompt them to create more exceptional works.”

Watch Jones’ documentary film Going Platinum: The Story of the Platinum Jets today.

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