Nikki, Wild Dog of the North (film)

Nikki, Wild Dog of the North (film) Andre Dupas, a French-Canadian hunter, finds a dead mother-bear, and deciding to save her cub from sure death by raising it himself, ties the cub, Neewa, to his malamute pup, Nikki, and continues paddling down the river. At the rapids, the canoe overturns, and the animals are washed away, still tied together. They discover they have to cooperate to survive, and even though they eventually break loose from each other, they become friends until a winter hibernation leaves Nikki on his own. Nikki grows into a powerful dog, but is captured by a cruel hunter, LeBeau, who makes him into a savage fighter and takes him to the trading post run by Dupas, who has banned the customary dog fighting. LeBeau ignores the ruling, fights Nikki, and is thrown out by Dupas whom he then shoves into the dog pit, expecting the savage Nikki to tear him to bits. Nikki recognizes his old master, and the enraged LeBeau springs into the pit to kill Dupas himself. When he finds he is losing the battle he treacherously pulls a knife, but Nikki springs on him. LeBeau falls on his own knife, killing himself. Nikki and Dupas are reunited. Released on July 12, 1961. Directed by Jack Couffer and Dan Haldane. The screenplay was based on James Oliver Curwood’s book, Nomads of the North. 73 min. Stars Jean Coutu (Andre Dupas), Emile Genest (Jacques LeBeau), with narration by Jacques Fauteux. Filmed on location in Canada by two separate film units. The film helped prove that Disney had perfected the method of blending a True-Life Adventure style of nature film with a dramatic story. Released on video in 1986.