24. February 2016 · Comments Off on #52FilmsByWomen #CdnTwist 7 – Girls’ Night Out (director: Phyllis Ellis) · Categories: #52filmsbywomen, Documentaries, Television

This year, I joined thousands of other film fans who have taken on the challenge to watch 52 films directed by women in 2016.  It’s part of a campaign using the hashtag #52filmsbywomen.  I’m throwing in an additional twist and making them all Canadian films.

My selection for film 7 is the film Girls’ Night Out (2016) by director Phyllis Ellis.

Girls’ Night Out is billed as a feature-length POV documentary, an all access journey into the lives of young women and binge drinking.  The film features the first person narratives from women who talk about the epidemic proportions binge drinking has risen to in recent years.   More »

10. February 2016 · Comments Off on This Changes Everything · Categories: Documentaries, Television · Tags: , , ,

05_naomi_klein_in_ny-1024x677Filmed over 211 shoot days in nine countries and five continents over four years the documentary This Changes Everything is described as “an epic attempt to re-imagine the vast challenge of climate change.”

Inspired by Naomi Klein’s international non-fiction bestseller of the same name, the film presents seven powerful portraits of communities believed to be on the front lines of climate change.  The film takes viewers from Montana’s Powder River Basin to the Alberta Tar Sands, from the coast of South India to Beijing and beyond.

The film was screened at Toronto International Film Festival in 2015 where it was awarded the 2nd place People’s Choice Award.  You can watch it on the main CBC Network on Friday February 18th.  Check your local listings.

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03. August 2015 · Comments Off on Murray Foster’s ‘The Cocksure Lads’ · Categories: Feature Films, Television · Tags: , , ,

murrayheadshot-2The Cocksure Lads, a band from England, come to Toronto on their first-ever North American tour. Ten minutes after arriving, they get into a fight over royalties and break up. The Lads scatter across the city, and spend the day drinking, fighting, meeting girls, falling in love, and searching for a claw-foot bathtub. Through it all they learn what it means to be a band – but can they patch things up before their big show that night?

Director Murray Foster was born in Toronto, attended the University of Toronto, obtaining a degree in English.  While he was there, he formed Moxy Fruvous with three high school friends.  He joined the band Great Big Sea in 2001.  Although a musician by profession, Murray has always had a keen interest for writing.  Although he dabbled in different forms of fiction he didn’t start screenwriting until he entered a local play competition.  After a collective called Filmcoop produced one of his short plays he was quickly pulled into the world of filmmaking in 2010. — official site

Foster pitched the film on the episode of CBC’s Dragons’ Den that aired on January 21, 2015.

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Secret War, a documentary about veterans who join an equine therapy program will have its broadcast television premiere on CBC Ottawa on Saturday August 1st at 7pm as part of the channel’s Ottawa Docs 2015.  Recent graduates from the Carleton University’s Master of Journalism program, Fangliang Xu, Emanuela Campanella, Sarah Turnbull and Shannon Lough created the short film last fall as part of the documentary class taught by Michael Ostroff.

Here’s a clip of the film posted on CBC’s Absolutely Ottawa page.

We interviewed the filmmakers earlier this year for the second episode of our #OttawaIndieFilm series.  Here’s our Season 1 recap vid for the series.

Tune in to CBC Ottawa on Saturday August 1 at 7pm for Ottawa Docs.

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hbowomenwhoact

Canadian filmmaker Patricia Rozema (Mansfield Park) sits down for intimate interviews with iconic Canadian actors Andrea Martin, Tatiana Maslany, Sandra Oh, and Ellen Page in HBO Canada’s 67-minute special Women Who Act.

Women Who Act with Patricia Rozema is an exclusive look at the fierce, tender, funny, and powerful careers of four of our most outstanding actresses. An award-winning director herself, Patricia takes us truly behind-the-camera.” — Helga Stephenson, CEO, Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television.

Patricia was recently interviewed about the project by guest host Rachel Giese for q on CBC.  Catch Women Who Act on HBO Canada on Sunday July 26, 2015.

28. June 2015 · Comments Off on Rockburn Presents – Atom Egoyan · Categories: Film-related, Television · Tags: , , , ,

Award-winning host Ken Rockburn spoke to Canadian filmmaker Atom Egoyan in Ottawa recently, for Rockburn Presents on CPAC.  Watch the episode here.

In June of 2015, film director Atom Egoyan was presented with the Governor-General’s Performing Arts Award for his contribution to Canada’s film culture. At 54 years of age, Egoyan isn’t quite ready to fold away his director’s chair yet. Egoyan was born in Cairo, Egypt to Armenian parents, both aspiring painters who came to Canada and ran a furniture store in Victoria, BC. Egoyan picked up a degree in International Relations from the University of Toronto before attempting to pursue a career in his first passion, the theatre. Miffed at not being accepted at the University of Toronto’s theatre school, Egoyan decided to make a film, and it was from that experience that led him on to a remarkable career that included such films as Exotica, The Sweet Hereafter, Ararat, Chloe and The Captive. His films have received two Academy Award nominations and 25 Genie Awards. He has also directed the Canadian Opera Company’s productions of Salome and The Ring. His next feature film, Remember, is scheduled for release in 2016.
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