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Monthly Archives

August 2017

Producer Accelerator in Fort McMurray a success!

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“I just attended the Producers Accelerator Workshop in Fort McMurray this weekend. As an actor, desiring new ways to find and create work, I thought this would be a daunting, but good workshop to expand my world of possibilities and opportunities. Although I have some idea of the production side as an actor, I have no working knowledge of it.

“I was wrong. It wasn’t good. It was fantastic. Yes, it was daunting in the amount of what’s required to pull a production together. But it was overwhelming positive in its message of anything is possible. The information, experience and support offered by ALL of the panel members was outstanding!

“Kudos to Dylan Pearce, and AMPIA for putting on this very informative and positive workshop. To think, I almost didn’t come because of the drive. What a huge mistake that would have been on my part! I can only hope that I’m able to work with each one of these talented people down the road, on both sides of the camera.”

— Attendee Chad Nobert

CRTC GLR decision sent back for reconsideration

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The Department of Canadian Heritage has sent the CRTC’s recent group license renewal decisions for English and French-language broadcasters back to the CRTC for reconsideration and hearings. The Governor in Council made the decision late Aug. 14 on thne advice of Minister of Canadian Heritage Melanie Joly and with the support of Cabinet, according to a release announcing the decision.

“Canadian broadcasters and creators are at the centre of the broadcasting system, and at a time when our competitive advantage rests on creativity, they must be positioned to succeed,” Minister Joly said in the release. “We are asking the CRTC to reconsider these decisions in order to ensure that we achieve the right balance of investment in content and in the ability to compete.”

Read Statement Here

Members of the Canadian screen-based industry launched a campaign against the group licence renewal decisions soon after the decisions were released in May. The DGC, ACTRA and CMPA filed a joint petition in June arguing, among other things, that the decision to set programs of national interest spend at 5% of revenues could result in a $141 million decrease in broadcaster spending on independently produced Cancon over the five-year licence term.

THANK YOU to all who signed our petition and wrote letters to Minister Joly about this very important challenge to our industry. We will keep members apprised of the outcome of the review by the CRTC.

Industry unions and guilds have commended Minister Joly’s action and are urging the Commission to overturn its decisions.

Canadian Heritage has sent the CRTC’s recent group licence renewal decisions for English and French-language broadcasters back to the CRTC for reconsideration and hearings.

The Governor in Council made the decision late Aug. 14 on the advice of Minister of Canadian Heritage Melanie Joly and with the support of Cabinet, according to a release announcing the decision.

“Canadian broadcasters and creators are at the centre of the broadcasting system, and at a time when our competitive advantage rests on creativity, they must be positioned to succeed,” Minister Joly said in the release. “We are asking the CRTC to reconsider these decisions in order to ensure that we achieve the right balance of investment in content and in the ability to compete.”

Members of the Canadian screen-based industry launched a campaign against the group licence renewal decisions soon after the decisions were released in May. The DGC, ACTRA and CMPA filed a joint petition in June arguing, among other things, that the decision to set programs of national interest spend at 5% of revenues could result in a $141 million decrease in broadcaster spending on independently produced Cancon over the five-year licence term.

“In referring back these decisions, the Government wishes to affirm its support for great Canadian dramas, comedies, animation, films, documentaries — and other programs of national interest — that reflect our country and its diversity. It also recognizes the importance of original French-language content and support for the creators of music programming, short films and short-form documentaries,” said Minister Joly.

Canada’s production community has largely come out in favour of the government’s decision. In a joint press release, ACTRA, the CMPA and DGC commended Joly for taking action and urged the CRTC to overturn its decision.

“After a long wait, we have Melanie Joly’s first major decision on cultural policy and it’s a winner. We hope this is a sign of a permanent break with the previous government’s policies on culture,” DGC president Tim Southam said in a release.

The unions and guilds noted, however, that Minister Joly did not address other challenges to the GLR decisions, including the CRTC’s decision to remove independent production obligations on non-PNI programming and evening exhibition requirements for discretionary services.

“We urge the Minister to take concrete measures to prevent large broadcasters from using their market power to kill competition, reduce programming diversity, and appropriate Canadians’ hard-earned dollars for themselves,” said Scott Garvie, chair of the CMPA and SVP business and legal affairs at Shaftesbury.

Minister Joly is expected to deliver her long-awaited cultural policy framework in the next month, and the unions and guilds expressed their expectation that she will address these other issues at that time.

A representative for the CRTC told Playback Daily that the commission will reconsider its decision and announce next steps at a later date.

Rogers Media, Bell Media and Corus Entertainment did not respond to requests for comment as of press time. The three private broadcasters did previously express their desire to maintain the CRTC GLR decisions, however. The companies took out a full-page ad in Ottawa’s Hill Times two weeks ago (in response to an ad taken out by 19 screen industry organizations), arguing that sending the decisions back for reconsideration would “create more uncertainty for our businesses at a time when we need to be laser focused on our audiences.”

Industry calls on Minister Joly to reject PNI decision

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Industry calls on Minister Joly to reject PNI decision

Today, the CMPA, AMPIA and 17 other industry organizations, including all major Guilds and Unions, have signed an open letter to Minister of Canadian Heritage Melanie Joly asking her to set aside the CRTC’s licence renewal decisions for English-language television groups.

The decisions, released in May, set required spend on Programs of National Interest (PNI), such as dramas, documentaries and award shows, at 5% of revenues – a reduction from the broadcasters’ historic average spend.

Across the production sector, Canada’s creator community shares deep concerns about the damaging impact of these decisions. An independent analysis commissioned by the CMPA found that the CRTC’s decision to decrease the required amount broadcasters must spend on Canadian Programs of National Interest (PNI) will likely result in a drop of more than $900 million in production volume, causing a cumulative economic reduction of $1.15 billion in GDP over the five-year period during which the broadcasters’ licences will be in place.

Read More

How you can help!

If you have not already done so, we strongly encourage you to sign and share our separate yet parallel House of Commons Electronic Petition (e-petition) launched last month by the CMPA, ACTRA, the DGC and the WGC. Sponsored by Toronto—Danforth Liberal MP Julie Dabrusin, it has to date garnered nearly 8,000 signatures. To make a strong statement, our goal is to get that number up to 10,000 signatures by the Minister’s August 14 decision deadline.

Given that the GLR decisions will inevitably mean less choice for consumers and less diversity of voices, the impact of these decisions will be felt by the industry, but also – importantly – by Canadian consumers. This is why we are asking you to not only share the petition with your personal and professional networks, but also with the millions of Canadians who love the content that you produce.

 

You can share the e-petition through your social media channels by copying this link: http://bit.ly/CRTCepetition

And if you have not already signed the e-petition, you can click on the button below.
SIGN THE E-PETITION NOW→

Should you have any questions, please contact:

Marc Séguin
Senior Vice-President, Policy, CMPA
Marc.Seguin@cmpa.ca
1-800-656-7440 x323

Bill Evans
Executive Director, AMPIA
bevans@ampia.org
780 944-0707 Ext 4

Edmonton Screen Industries Office searching for its first Chief Executive Officer

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An exciting chapter is beginning for Edmonton’s screen industries, as the city has recently established an arms-length Edmonton Screen Industries Office (“ESIO”). The office has been established to help lead Edmonton in becoming a national and international centre for media production excellence. The organization was incorporated in May 2017, and its membership and board have been duly appointed.

“I’m pleased to say that the ESIO is up and running and ready to begin its work to help lead Edmonton in becoming a national and international centre for media production excellence. We are delighted by the confidence shown in us by our municipality and will work diligently to steward an organization committed to nurturing an integrated screen industry right here in our city,” said ESIO Chair Carman McNary.

“Screen industries” includes the full range of screen-based entertainment, education and training — from mobile, television, Internet streaming and theatrical release inclusive of live action, animation and interactive video games.

The first task for the ESIO Board is to hire an exemplary and visionary Chief Executive Officer. The executive search firm Pekarsky & Co. has been engaged to support the Board in their recruitment process.

The ESIO will listen, learn and champion this exciting sector with perseverance, passion and an eye to the best possible future for the sector in Edmonton. The future of the Canadian economy will be shaped by those who have the opportunity to turn their intellectual property into profitable products and services that the world wants. This is as true of the screen industries sector as it is of any other. As McNary describes: “We are of the firm view that the world needs more Edmonton – its talent, its people, its ideas and energy. Our commitment is to building and supporting a screen industries ecosystem
where talent of all kind can thrive and impact global markets.”

For more information, please visit www.pekarskyco.com and www.edmontonscreenindustries.com

Wynonna Earp renewed at Space

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U.S. network Syfy has also signed on for a third season of the Seven24 Films-produced supernatural western.

With season two still underway, Space has renewed supernatural western Wynonna Earp for a third.

The Bell Media-owned specialty has ordered 12 hour-long episodes of the series, created by Emily Andras (Lost Girl). Space boarded season two as a production partner in May and premiered the sophomore season on June 9. Season one aired on Hamilton, ON-based indie broadcaster CHCH.

The series airs on Syfy in the U.S. The science fiction-focused channel announced at Comic-Con in San Francisco on Saturday that it has also renewed the series. Season three will premiere on both channels in 2018.

Based on the IDW Publishing comic book series created by Beau Smith, the series stars Melanie Scrofano as the gun-toting, demon-hunting great granddaughter of Wyatt Earp. It also stars Shamier Anderson (Race), Tim Rozon (Schitt’s Creek), Dominique Provost-Chalkley (Avengers: Age of Ultron), Katherine Barrell (Workin’ Moms), Varun Saranga (Schitt’s Creek) and Tamara Duarte (Longmire).

Wynonna Earp is produced by Calgary’s Seven24 Films, in association with Space and Bell Media, and distributed internationally by IDW Entertainment. Andras serves as showrunner, writer and exec producer. Seven24′s Jordy Randall and Tom Cox also exec produce alongside David Ozer, Ted Adams, Rick Jacobs and Todd Berger, while Brian Dennis produces.

According to Numeris information provided by Bell Media, since its season two premiere on June 9, Wynonna Earp has seen its total audience increase 52% compared to Space’s season one re-broadcast of the series, which aired April 15 to June 3.

Read more: http://playbackonline.ca/2017/07/24/wynonna-earp-renewed-at-space/#ixzz4nlXaDuc7

 

Emmy Nomination for The Great Human Odyssey

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The series The Great Human Odyssey has been nominated for an Emmy in its category, “Outstanding Science and Technology”. This comes after winning two Canadian Screen awards for “Best Science and Nature Documentary” and “Best Original Music”, as well as six Rosies. The series is in competition with films by David Lynch, Werner Herzog, and David Attenborough, and the announcement of a winner will be made in NYC on the 5th of October.

The tremendous crew of Albertans who made The Great Human Odyssey deserve congratulations: Editor Brenda Terning, Cinematographers Daron Donahue and aAron Munson, Production Manager Sandra Tober, Production Coordinator Emma Radford, Art Director Natasha Lazarovich, Sound Designer Perry Blackman, Colourist Glenn Sakatch and Online Engineer Joe Owens. The series was Produced, Directed and Hosted by Niobe Thompson.

China Trade Mission Update!

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Thanks to all who attended our recent China Trade Mission information sessions! Please see the very useful presentations made by our colleagues at Alberta Economic Development and Trade which are now available here in the ‘CHINA MISSION’ link above. We are finalizing the exact dates of the mission with Alberta Culture and Tourism Minister Miranda, who will be leading the Mission; however, the 7-day mission will take place the second week of January, 2018. The draft schedule is to spend two days in Guangzhou and two days in Shanghai, with a possible side trip to the Hengdian World Studios (pictured above).

For any other information, please contact AMPIA Executive Director Bill Evans at: bevans@ampia.org.

The AMPIA Producer Accelerator Program is coming to Ft. Mac!

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In partnership with Telus:

 

The AMPIA Producer Accelerator Program, in partnership with Telus Storyhive, is an intensive, 2-day course for emerging and mid-level content creators. Over the weekend, you will receive training from established industry professionals on the topics of Story, Funding, Pitching, Writing,  Business Affairs, Export & Distribution and New Media. It will be held in Fort McMurray at the Radisson Hotel and Suites on August 19th and 20th.

Register Here