Iconic Slap Shot Scene Based on Real Fight With Comets Fans at Utica Aud
Did you know one iconic Slap Shot scene is based on a real fight with Comets fans in the Utica Aud stands?
The Hanson Brothers are still playing hockey 45 years after making their debut on the ice at the Adirondack Bank Center in Utica, New York in the movie Slap Shot. Brothers Jeff and Steve Carlson and David Hanson play the three fighting hockey players in the movie released 45 years ago in February of 1977.
The movie was based on a minor league hockey team in the fictional town of Charlestown, New England. But it was actually filmed in several Central New York locations including the Clinton Arena, War Memorial in Syracuse, and the Utica Memorial Auditorium that is now known as the Adirondack Bank Center.
Several scenes in the film were based on real-life, including the one where the Hanson brothers fight fans in the stands. It actually happened in Utica during a game between the Johnstown Jets and the Mohawk Valley Comets.
Jeff Carlson was hit in the face by a cup of ice thrown by a Utica fan and went into the stands after the fan with brothers Jack and Steve. All three were arrested and Dave Hanson gathered the money for bail for the Carlson brothers.
In the movie, it was a set of keys instead of a cup of ice that was thrown from the stands.
The pre-game fight scene really happened too. It's based on a playoff game between the Johnstown Jets and the Buffalo Norsemen in North Tonawanda, New York, where a fan held up a derogatory sign for a black Jets player.
Most of the movie is during the fall and winter hockey season but filming at the Aud in Utica actually took place in June. Good thing all the scenes were inside the rink.
The movie received mixed reviews when it was first released and only saw moderate success at the box office. But it's become popular over the years and is now regarded as a cult classic. So popular the Hanson brothers are traveling the country, strapping on the skates and meeting fans 45 years later, goofy coke glasses and all.
Movies Shot in CNY
Slap Shot was just one of several movies filmed in Central New York, including the blockbuster thriller 'A Quiet Place' with John Krasinski and Emily Blunt, where many scenes were shot in Little Falls. Filming moved to the Buffalo area for the sequel.