Thunderbird grabs 'Mayerthorpe' rights


TORONTO -- Canadian distributor Thunderbird Films said Monday that it has picked up worldwide distribution rights to the homegrown telefilm "To Serve and Protect: Tragedy at Mayerthorpe," which stars Henry Czerny and Diane Ladd.

Vancouver-based Thunderbird said it purchased the global rights to the docudrama, which is based on the 2005 killings of four Royal Canadian Mounted Police officers in rural Alberta by James Roszko, who committed suicide after the shootings.

The Canadian telefilm, directed by Ken Girotti ("24") and penned by Andrew Wreggit ("Shades of Black"), is being shot in Calgary by local producer Seven24 Films and Toronto's Slanted Wheel Entertainment. Brian Markinson stars as Roszko, with Czerny co-starring as a fictional RCMP officer and Ladd playing Roszko's mother.

CTV will air the telefilm in Canada.

Thunderbird Films recently sold a host of Canadian TV series, including "Da Vinci's Inquest" and "Degrassi: The Next Generation," into the U.S. syndication market.