An inspirational movie retracing the steps of an Almonte man who's credited with changing lives premiered in the capital Sunday night.

"In 2005, I went on a trip with Dr. Sean Egan that completely changed my life," Ottawa filmmaker Elia Saiklay told CTV Ottawa.

"I was a guy who never slept in a tent before, and let's just say that nothing has been the same since."

Saiklay made the movie Finding Life after climbing Mount Everest with Egan, 63, a University of Ottawa professor who died of heart failure along the journey.

Influenced by Egan's philosophy of "aiming high," the movie aims to bring new life to the saying that fueled many of his beliefs.

"We all have these mountains to climb and we're truly capable of anything," said Saiklay.

"Life is for living and there's this moment to live and hopefully this film shares that message and teaches people that they too can find that for themselves."

An outpouring of support for the film earned Finding Life an Audience Choice award, receiving recognition and profound appreciation particularly from those who knew Egan.

"I think he'd be pretty happy that the message is being passed along. I think it's all about the message that my Dad died pretty much trying to get out there," said Seamas Egan.

"I'm just so proud of Elia -- the guy's amazing. What he's done since our father's passing just broke my heart because I just want to step in shoes that are as big as my old man's."

With a report from CTV Ottawa's Maggie Padlewska