83 minutes – Comedy
Release date: March 11, 2005
Canadian Distributor: Lions Gate Entertainment
It is true that when NASA contemplated sending astronauts to the moon, they first sent them to Northern Ontario. Someplace like Sudbury where the otherwise pristine countryside has been converted into a moonscape by decades of dumping slag from the mills. Perhaps this was in the back of actor-director-screenwriter Rob Stefaniuk`s mind when he dreamed up the plot of Phil the Alien. Phil crashes into a small town in Northern Ontario, makes friends with a young boy and a super-intelligent beaver (the voice is supplied by Joe Flaherty), and quickly develops a heavy drinking problem. Phil is an innocent lost in the wilderness. He learns that everyone in town (children included) drinks hard liquor and carries a gun. Surrounded by hunters, prostitutes, an ex-CIA operative and other misfits, Phil becomes close with the local bar band and takes up gospel singing. Meanwhile over at a Top Secret American UFO Base, located beneath the Niagara Falls, they have learned about Phil and agents are ordered to bring him in. Phil the Alien screened at the 2004 Toronto International Film Festival.
Production still photo courtesy of Lions Gate Entertainment by D. Gregor Hagey.