Community Papers

Big Foot makes cameo in North Van TV series

An actor plays Big Foot in an episode shot in Lynn Valley.  - Submitted
An actor plays Big Foot in an episode shot in Lynn Valley.
— image credit: Submitted

Big Foot was spotted running through a forest in Lynn Valley late last year. It was dirty, shaggy and around six feet tall.

But don't worry, the mythical ape-like creature is only a character in a TV episode shot in North Vancouver.

The second season of Health Nutz, a comedy centred around a juice bar owned by the fictional North Vancouver Indian Band, is premiering on Aboriginal Peoples Television Network Feb. 9 and 14.

In the TV series, Health Nutz Juice Bar becomes property of the reserve when the owner doesn't return from Las Vegas. The band's chief, George Salmonbelly, appoints his troubled son, Axel, to manage the popular hangout.

"Everyone is worried about the future of the juice bar and their jobs," says Vancouver filmmaker Jason Friesen, whose real life experience as a juice bartender inspired the comedy. "But Axel can take over because he gets kicked off the pro-gold circuit for a year because he slept with a golf commissioners wife and has a bit of a drinking problem as well.

"The ladies love Axel, he's a bit of a celebrity, but he's naive and gullible. He'll get involved in a scam and not even know it."

Will the juice bar's colourful community help Axel turn his life around?

With the help of the bar's staff, Axel slowly learns to turn a bad situation into a great learning experience, says Friesen, or at least that's what he would like to make the Health Nutz community think.

"I've always been fascinated with bars. It's a place people go to be part of a community," Friesen tells The Outlook. "You have eclectic people from different parts of society who all come together to talk about their lives."

This is exact experience Friesen had in real life while working at a juice bar.

"People would come in and tell me their problems, but we were discussing it over carrot juice."

The next episode, filmed in mid-November in Lynn Valley, features a German man who is "fascinated by Indians," explains Freisen.

He's in love with one of the characters who Axel is also interested in. To pay him back, Axel decides to take him on a "vision quest" that is really just a hike through Lynn Valley.

They soon spot Big Foot in the distance. But is it an actor Axel hired to play the part or the real thing?

Health Nutz stars Toronto actor Wesley French (Cashing In, Shania), Lucie Guest (Edgemont, Repeaters), guest stars Brian George (Seinfeld, Big Bang Theory), Mike Reno of Loverboy and features a cameo by "Bro Jake" Edwards of Rock 101 FM. The six-episode series is written and produced by Friesen and Dasha Novak.

Season Two premiers on Feb. 9 at 7 p.m. and repeats on Feb. 14 at 10:30 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. See a new episode every week on healthnutz.tv or keep up-to-date at facebook.com/healthnutztv.

mgarstin@northshoreoutlook.com
twitter.com/MichaelaGarstin

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