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'The Champions': a film about survivors

CHAMBERSBURG - "The Champions," an inspirational documentary about pit bull terriers rescued from the dogfighting ring of Atlanta Falcon’s star quarterback Michael Vick, has been moving audiences to tears and making them laugh out loud at film festivals since its premier last fall at the Hamptons International Film Festival.

The film follows the story of the organizations and individuals who saved the dogs despite pressure from national humane groups to euthanize them. Better Days Animal League of Shippensburg is hosting a local screening of the documentary in an effort to change perceptions about pit bull terrier-like dogs.

The film will be presented at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 22, at Carmike Cinemas - Cinema 7, 900 Chambersburg Mall, Chambersburg. Tickets must be reserved in advance and 79 reserved tickets are required to confirm the screening.

"Dogfighting happens all over and most of the time people don’t even hear about it. But because Michael Vick was famous, the dogs rescued from Bad Newz Kennels got lots of attention," said Darcy Dennett, director and producer of "The Champions," in a press release promoting the film.

"The public started asking the government 'why do you have to kill these dogs?'" Dennett said. "In the movie Rebecca Huss, the federal court appointed guardian/special master of the case, says that 'the judge in this case said he had gotten 3,000 emails about this case. His administrative assistant was taking 200 calls a day.' Previous groundwork that helped positively shape the outcome of this case had been laid for years by animal rescue and advocacy organizations who had been telling governmental authorities dogs like these don’t have to die, that they were victims who deserved a second chance."

The trailer and more information about the film are available at

To reserve tickets go to

When you go:

"The Champions"

7:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 22

Carmike Cinemas - Cinema 7

900 Chambersburg Mall, Chambersburg

Tickets must be reserved in advance; 79 reserved tickets are required to confirm the screening.