‘Next Norma Rae’ debuts in theatres across country


Two leads in Stand! movie musical Marshall Williams (as Stefan Sokolowski) and Laura Slade Wiggins (as Rebecca Almazoff) star in the movie musical Stand! [Photo: Eric Zachanowich]

The movie musical that many are hoping will energize the labour movement will open in Cineplex theatres nationwide on Nov. 29.

Stand! — being hailed by some as the “next Norma Rae” — is described as a Romeo and Juliet story set against the 1919 Winnipeg General Strike, but with “contemporary human rights lessons about inequality, xenophobia and anti-unionism.”

“The labour movement does tremendous good for Canadians but we rarely get credit. This movie could be a huge public relations boost,” said CWA Canada President Martin O’Hanlon, who urged Locals to support it by spreading the word on social media and buying tickets to give to their members.

Group sales are available until Nov. 22 by calling 1-800-313-4461 or emailing groupsales@cineplex.com.

Danny Schur, the composer/producer of the acclaimed stage musical Strike! and its re-titled screenplay adaptation, said attendance over the first three days of the movie’s release is “critical to being held over in theatres for a second or third week.”

CWA Canada was the first union to pledge funds ($10,000) in the fall of 2016 when Schur made his pitch to the Canadian Labour Congress to secure financing for the production.

The movie is the result of a partnership between the labour movement in Canada and the United States, the Canadian Museum for Human Rights and the producers.

Canadian labour provided a total of $1.25 million to pre-purchase 500,000 copies of the movie to be distributed to students.

In this way, said O’Hanlon, Stand! “will engage a new generation in the vital role they can play in standing up for justice and fairness.”


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