The 2010 Toronto International Film Festival will open on Sept 9 with the world premiere of Score: A Hockey Musical.

Michael McGowan writes and directs the musical story set in the world of Canada’s favourite sport.

The plot follows a teenage hockey player who finds overnight fame. The cast features Olivia Newton-John, Marc Jordan, and newcomers Noah Reid and Allie MacDonald. There are cameos from the likes of Nelly Furtado, Walter Gretzky and Theo Fleury.

The film includes 19 original songs (with lyrics by McGowan) featuring music from Barenaked Ladies, Olivia Newton-John, Amy Sky, Marc Jordan and Hawksley Workman.

The film is a Mulmur Feed Co. Production, produced by McGowan and Avi Federgreen, and executive produced by Richard Hanet  and Jody Colero, with the participation of Telefilm Canada, The Ontario Media Development Corporation and Astral The Harold Greenberg Fund, in association with the Canadian Film or Video Production Tax Credit and the Ontario Film and Television Tax Credit.

Mongrel Media will distribute in Canada.

Score: A Hockey Musical captures key elements of Canadian identity – our passion for our national pastime, our unique musical style and our special brand of humour,” says Piers Handling, director and CEO of TIFF. “We’re pleased to welcome back Michael McGowan to the Festival to help us kick off 11 days of exciting programming.” 

“I can’t think of a better way to kick off our 35th anniversary festival than with Score: A Hockey Musical,” added Cameron Bailey, co-director of the Toronto International Film Festival. “It continues our tradition of launching the very best in Canadian filmmaking — although in 35 years this is our first musical romance about hockey.”

TIFF runs Sept 9-19.