New Sparta Films (NSF) is delighted to announce its acquisition of the film rights to Sam Angus’ award winning, first novel, Soldier Dog – a heart-breaking, powerful story of a boy soldier and his messenger dog.
‘He’ll always be true, faithful and brave, even to the last beat of his heart’
It is 1917, one of the darkest moments of British history. Stanley’s dad hasn’t been the same since his Wife died and his eldest son went off to fight in the war. Now Stanley is either invisible to his dad or the object of one of his rages, and his only friend is his dad’s prizewinning greyhound, Rocket. But, one day Rocket escapes, and the result is a litter of non-thoroughbred puppies that Da says will all have to be drowned, even Stanley’s favourite puppy, Soldier. Stanley is so angry with his father that he runs away and enlists in the Army to train as a messenger dog handler, and despite being far too young, he’s soon heading to France with a Great Dane called Bones by his side.
Recruited into the Signal Service, Stanley finds himself miles from home, in the trenches on the Somme, a boy fighting a man’s war. Stanley’s dog must cross no-man’s land alone under heavy fire to return to his side. Around the dog’s neck, in a tin cylinder, is the message that could save so many lives. Only complete loyalty and love will pull the dog through a blizzard of fire, back to the boy’s side.
New Sparta Films will finance the development of this film project and work closely with writer, Sam Angus, on the adaptation of the book and production of the screenplay.
NSF Founder and Managing Director, Nicki Hattingh, says “We are really thrilled to acquire the film rights to Soldier Dog. I read the book on a flight 2 years ago and immediately fell in love with both the human and canine characters so beautifully drawn by Sam. This beautiful and powerful story, so simply told, has the potential to be a wonderful family film, taking audiences on a roller-coaster ride of emotion through an heroic WW1 storyline. We can’t wait to see it on the big screen.”
Soldier Dog is Sam’s first book. She has also written A Horse Called Hero, which tells the tale of orphaned foal during WWII and Captain, the story of a refugee boy and his donkey Hey-ho during WWI.