The CBC wants you!
That is, if your great-grandfather helped take Vimy Ridge, or was one of the half-million Canadians who fought in the Great War.
Writer-director Brian McKenna is putting out the call for 300 volunteers willing to walk in their ancestors' footsteps, literally.
It's all part of a massive four-hour docu-drama project scheduled to air on CBC-TV in 2007 to mark the 90th anniversary of the battle of Vimy Ridge.
McKenna (The Killing Ground, War at Sea) says he first got the idea when he saw his grandfather's kid brother's grave at Ypres, an emotional moment that set him on his career path of researching Canadian war history.
"And then finding his papers in the national records office at the Archives and seeing his signature. It was electrifying!"
He says anyone can log onto the National Archives website and trace their ancestors' war records. And so he wants to use the Internet for his own recruitment campaign. Anyone interested in participating in the project can sign up.
But it won't be a picnic.
Plans call for having some of the volunteers re-live the soldier experience next summer. They will be brought by train to Montreal, then overseas to England to take part in an authentic First World War boot camp, then onto the actual battlefields of France to participate in huge battle recreations, in effect walking through their ancestor's war.
McKenna envisages how the film will show a typical young volunteer being sent into the spooky tunnels that are still preserved at Vimy.
"He would go down, wearing the jeans and shoes of a kid today, and in the film he would come out of the tunnel in the middle of the battle as his great-grandfather."
Afterwards he would be taken right to the grave of his relative.
McKenna says he doesn't know the budget for the project, a collaboration between CBC and Montreal's Galafilm, but feels the need to bring the Canadian experience of the First World War into the present. He notes how historians call it our war of independence, one in which we sent more than 400,000 troops overseas and a staggering 60,000 of them were killed, with an agonizing impact on just about every family in the country.
And yet, he says, it seems so distant and remote now.
He's also gratified that Radio Canada is committed to the project, given the war's conscription crisis that severely divided the young nation.
"But the conscription story overshadows the fact that there were at least 15,000 French-speaking Quebecers who volunteered to go to war," he notes. "One of our greatest regiments, the Van Doos, the Royal 22nd Regiment, was created during the First World War."
But he says their story of courage and sacrifice remains basically untold in Canada and particularly in Quebec.
"I think they got excited about telling this story as well. That we have to move beyond the old things that have divided us and find new things that we went through together that might unite us."