FOR THOSE WHO LOVE FILM & TV
GET UP CLOSE & PERSONAL WITH THE HOTTEST TALENT IN THE COUNTRY
Saturday March 2, 2013. 7pm at TIFF Bell Lightbox
The Academy's sensational new evening featuring our finest Canadian talent on stage in conversation with SEAMUS O'REGAN.
Unbelievably, tickets are free.
Just bring your passion for film & television
(Director, Midnight's Children)
Deepa Mehta is an internationally renowned screenwriter and director and one of Canada’s most provocative filmmakers. She is best known for her critically acclaimed Elemental Trilogy: Fire, Earth and Water. In addition to filmmaking, Ms. Mehta serves on the board of the Canadian Civil Liberties Association, the Board of Directors of the Toronto International Film Festival and has served on the provincial Minister’s Advisory Council for Arts and Culture. Among her many honours, Ms. Mehta was named one of Canada’s Most Powerful Women by the Women’s Executive Network and has received the Excellence in the Arts Award from the Canadian Civil Liberties Association. Ms. Mehta is also the recipient of numerous honorary degrees from international universities and the recipient of a Governor General’s Performing Arts Award for Lifetime Artistic Achievement. In February 2013, Mehta was appointed to the Order of Canada. In her latest project, Ms. Mehta collaborated with Salman Rushdie on an adaptation of his award winning novel, Midnight’s Children.
Anita Doron was born in Transcarpathia, a little known land of nomadic ghosts, barley mush and apricot brandy.She was one of the youngest published poets in the former USSR and grew up in a family of high altitude mountaineers.
(Director, Writer, The Lesser Blessed)
At 12, Anita’s first film --- An environmental protest piece --- raised the ire of Soviet bureaucracy,teaching her the power of visual storytelling.
A decade later, escaping being sold for 200 sheep in remote Uzbekistan, Anita decided to make life easy by becoming a filmmaker.
After two of her short films premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival, Anita has directed three no---budget, guerrilla features: The End of Silence, starring Sarah Harmer, winning several international festival awards; Europa, East, a minimalist drama set against the rise of the Hungarian right wing, premiering at the 2010 International Film Festival Rotterdam; and Mystico Fantástico! A magical realism comedy set in Mexico.
Anita has directed documentaries for the CBC, City Sonic and The Seven Sins Project, along with
Bruce MacDonald and Peter Lynch. She was also one of three directors on Late Fragment, North America’s first interactive dramatic film, which screened at South By South West and the
Future of Cinema Salon at Cannes. In February 2010, Anita became a TED Fellow, recognizing her as an individual who “has shown unusual accomplishment, exceptional courage, and world---changing potential”. For the last two years, Anita has been a vagabond, living in India, the Middle East and Brazil, while working on several projects with her partner, Adam Huggins, including a wildly successful TEDx conference. They also have a one---year---old son named Tian. The Lesser Blessed in Anita's first feature film with a budget.
Benjamin Ayres is a leading performer in the film and television industry, well known for slipping seamlessly between genres. He is about to begin shooting the second season of the smash CTV hit series SAVING HOPE, where he plays Dr. Zachary Miller.
(Actor, Saving Hope)
Originally from Kamloops, British Columbia, Ayres is best known for his role as Cancer Cowboy, the chain-smoking sex addict with a morbid death obsession, in the critically acclaimed cult hit CBC series jPod, based on the Douglas Coupland novel of the same name.
The role garnered him a Leo nomination. Ayres is nominated for a Canadian Screen Award in
2013 for his performance as Eric Blake on HBO Canada's Gemini Award winning series LESS
Benjamin has appeared in various guest starring and recurring roles on the following hit series:
THE VAMPIRE DIARIES, FLASHPOINT, COMBAT HOSPITAL, SMALLVILLE, BATTLESTAR
GALACTICA and the ABC miniseries, DIAMONDS and IMPACT.
With Michael: Tuesdays & Thursdays, Bob Martin returns to television. Hurray!
(Producer, Actor, Michael: Tuesdays & Thursdays)
He is the co-creator, with Susan Coyne and Mark McKinney, of the critically-acclaimed series Slings & Arrows which, in three seasons, garnered 21 awards.
The New York Times wrote, “It’s a hoot, and it’s kind of a miracle.” Recently, the series was named one of the ten best TV shows of the decade by a number of publications including New York Magazine and MacLean’s. As well as writing for Slings & Arrows, Bob has written for Made in Canada and Twitch City which was created by and starred Don McKellar.
With Don McKellar, he wrote the book for the post-modern musical The Drowsy Chaperone (2006). Bob played “The Man in the Chair” in many of the musical’s incarnations: Toronto Fringe, Theatre Passe Muraille (Toronto), Elgin/Winter Garden (Toronto), Ahmanson Theatre (Los Angeles), Marquis Theatre (Broadway), Novello (London). The Broadway production was nominated for 13 Tonys and won for five including best book for a musical.
His second Broadway show Elf recently completed a successful run at the Hirschfeld Theatre, and will return to Broadway in the late Fall.
Martin has been working as an actor and writer in Canadian theatre, film and television for three decades. He has had a long association with the Toronto Second City, where he co-wrote and performed in four revues, directed three, and had a stint as artistic director.
He has won a Tony Award, a Drama Desk Award, a Theatre World Award, two Geminis, three WGA Screenwriting awards and five Canadian Comedy Awards. In 2006, the Globe & Mail named Bob one of the top ten Canadians in the Arts.
Gerry Dee began his comedy career in a very different fashion. The son of Scottish immigrant parents, Gerry was born in Scarborough, Ontario and grew up in Toronto. He currently splits his time between living in Los Angeles and Toronto.
(Producer, Actor, Mr.D)
He spent 10 years as a high school teacher before making the switch to full time comedy and acting in 2003.
In 2003 he made his US network debut when he performed on CBS' Star Search with Arsenio Hall. A year later he would appear on The Late Late Show with Craig Kilborn.
Gerry's new sitcom Mr. D, which he created, writes and stars in premiered in January 2012 on CBC to 1.3 million viewers. It was the highest rated scripted show premiere for the network in 7 years. The show is based on Gerry Dee's real-life experiences as a high school teacher before he switched to comedy full-time. The premise shines the light on teaching from the teacher's point of view, and as it turns out, teachers don't know everything, especially Mr. D -- who struggles to keep one step ahead of his students.
Mr.D was picked up for a second season in May 2012.
His second stand-up comedy DVD "Life After Teaching" was released in June 2012.
In October 2012, Gerry released worldwide his first book titled "Teaching: It's Harder Than It Looks" which will be published by Random House.
Gerry is a former Varsity hockey player and golfer. He is married with two children.
Jay Baruchel's starring roles include She's Out of My League and Jacob Tierney's Good Neighbours and and The Trotsky, the latter earning him a Genie Award nomination. Other film credits include Million Dollar Baby, The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, Tropic Thunder, Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist, Knocked Up, Almost Famous and How to Train Your Dragon.
For Jennifer Irwin, 2011 has been quite a year. In addition to Michael: Tuesdays and Thursdays, Irwin co-starred with Christian Slater in the Fox TV hit Breaking In. Her current film credits include Bad Teacher starring Justin Timberlake and Cameron Diaz and earlier in the year, she was directed by Ivan Reitman in No Strings Attached.
(Actor, Michael: Tuesdays & Thursdays)
Also this year, Irwin voiced the lead character on the animated Crash Canyon produced by The Simpsons co-creator Joel Cohen and airing on MTV. Nominated for a Gemini Award for her role as the man-eating manipulator Holly Day in Slings & Arrows, Irwin shines on series television. A series regular on HBO’s cult hit Eastbound & Down (2009-10) which goes into its final season this year as well as CBS’ Still Standing (2002-06).
Her television movie credits include Holly Hunter’s best friend in Showtime’s Harlan County War and the role of Jane Curtin in the ABC’s Gilda Radner: It’s Always Something. She has made guest appearances on series such as Raising Hope, Lie to Me, Party Down and Less Than Kind, for which she was nominated for a Canadian Comedy Award.
When this busy actress turns her creative energy to writing, she also does very well. For Toronto’s famed Second City, of which she was a member, she wrote four productions, all of which were nominated for Dora Awards. She combined her skills by creating and co-writing the role of Kitty in the original cast of the Tony Award-winning musical The Drowsy Chaperone.
Ken Finkleman is a television and film writer, director, producer and actor. He is best known for his Emmy Award-winning seriesThe Newsroom for CBC and PBS. He also produced Married Life (Comedy Central, Atlantis Films), Foolish Heart, Foreign Objects, More Tears and At The Hotel for CBC, and wrote screenplays for a number of Hollywood films in the 1980s. Finkleman is the creator, writer, director, producer and star of Shaftesbury’s comedy series Good God and Good Dog for The Movie Network and Movie Central. Finkleman’s first novel, Noah’s Turn, was published by HarperCollins in August 2010.
(Writer, Director, Producer, Actor, Good God)
Kenny Hotz started as a photo-journalist in the Gulf War of 1991 and went on to become an award-winning writer and columnist for VICE magazine. He was the inaugural winner of the Phillip Borsos Award for film and has been nominated for numerous Gemini’s and international comedy awards. He is the creator and star of the largest selling comedy format in Canadian history, the Comedy Central television show Kenny vs. Spenny. He is the creator and writer of the FX series Testees, and the creator and star of The Best Comedy Series nominated Kenny Hotz's Triumph of the Will.
(Producer, Actor, Kenny Hotz: Triumph of the Will)
He is a former South Park consultant and writer, and was nominated for “comedian of the year” at the Canadian Comedy Awards in 2012. He has made numerous TV appearances including MTV Cribs, Late Night with Conan O’Brian, Jimmy Kimmel Live, Late Night with Carson Daly, Tom Green Tonight and has memorable cameos in Kevin Smith's 2008 film Zack and Miri Make A Porno and Degrassi Takes Manhattan.
Said to be the most downloaded comedian in Canadian history, Hotz recently signed a google deal for his own premium YouTube channel and currently can be heard on his radio show on Sirius/XM.
Season four of the FX hit series Sons of Anarchy has already hit the airwaves with Kim Coates as Tig Trager, the motorcycle club’s sergeant at arms. Tig fears nothing, much like Kim’s career. In the fall of 2010 Kim starred in the blockbuster 3D movie Resident Evil Afterlife, with Milla Jovovich. Kim had five films opening in 2011-12 including Sacrifice, with Cuba Gooding Jr., A Little Help, with Jenna Fisher, Sinners and Saints, Robosapien, and Blood the Butchers Tale.
Kim’s film career began in 1991 with The Last Boy Scout. Two Warner Brothers’ hits followed: Innocent Blood and The Client. Since that time he has starred in over forty films, including Academy Award winners Black Hawk Down directed by Ridley Scott, and Pearl Harbor directed by Michael Bay. Other films include Waterworld and Open Range with Kevin Costner, The Island opposite Ewan McGregor, Grilled with Ray Romano, Silent Hill opposite Sean Bean, Hostage with Bruce Willis, Assault on Precinct 13, Unforgettable, Skinwalkers, and Hero Wanted. Kim presently has a recurring role on CSI Miami.
His talents have been well utilized in theatre, appearing in over fifty plays in North America. He starred on Broadway as Stanley Kowalski in A Streetcar Named Desire, and as the title role in Macbeth at the legendary Stratford Theatre. Kim Coates has continually proven himself to be a leading force in the world of acting and his versatile volume of work speaks for itself. His strong acting ethic means that he is an actor who cannot be stereotyped and this has brought him critical acclaim. Kim currently resides in Los Angeles with his wife and their two children.
In 2002, Kim Nguyen wrote and directed his first feature : LE MARAIS. The film received 6 Jutra nominations including ‘’Best Film’’ and ‘’Best Director’’. His second feature , TRUFFE, which he wrote, directed and produced, stars Roy Dupuis and was the opening film at Montreal ‘s FANTASIA Film Festival in 2008. It also garnered international awards including Best Film at the Karlovy Vary Fresh Film Festival. In 2009 he directed LA CITE, an international co production starring Jean Marc Barr. WAR WITCH (Rebelle), his latest feature was entirely shot in the Democratic Republic of the Congo in July 2011, has been sold in over 20 territories and is nominated for Best foreign language film at the Oscar 2013. It is also nominated for "Best international Film" at 28th Film Independent Spirit Awards. WAR WITCH. also won Silver Bear at the Berlinale and Best narrative film and best actress in TriBeCa.
(Director, War Witch)
(Actor, L'affaire Dumonte/ Goon)
(Producer, Actor, Less Than Kind)
MARK MCKINNEY is the Executive Producer/Writer/Showrunner/Director of four seasons of the multi-award-winning series, “Less Than Kind.” In addition to this, he has also written and produced some of the most sophisticated and groundbreaking television in North America. Having worked with the likes of Lorne Michaels on NBC’s “Saturday Night Live” (1985-86, 1995-97), and Aaron Sorkin on both “Sportsnight” (1998-99) and “Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip” (2006-07), Mark was the co-creator, writer and ensemble cast member of “The Kids in the Hall” (1988-94), which garnered him three Emmys nominations. “Kids” returned in 2010 with the mini-series, “Death Comes to Town.” With Susan Coyne and Bob Martin, he co-created and co-wrote the multi-award-winning international hit, “Slings & Arrows” which was syndicated by the Sundance Channel and the Brazilian adaptation, “Som e Fúria,” received a 2010 International Emmy nomination. Mark recently won WGC Showrunner Of The Year Award for “Less Than Kind” Season 3 and went on to serve as executive producer on “Picnicface,” on the Comedy Network. Mark’s most recent television credit is an episode he scripted for Bob Martin’s latest show, “Michael: Tuesdays and Thursdays.”
(Director, Michael: Tuesdays & Thursdays)
(Producer, Writer, Actor , The Rick Mercer Report)
Richard Van Camp
(Executive Producer, Author, The Lesser Blessed)
(Director, Writer, Laurence Anysways)
WENDEL MELDRUM who plays Anne Blecher in LESS THAN KIND may be best known for her supporting roles in “Seinfeld” and “The Wonder Years," but this Canadian actor, writer and producer is well versed in film and television. Meldrum has played a wide range of characters in television and has starred in a number of feature films and television movies where she excels in drama, comedy and dramedy.
(Actor, Less Than Kind)
In 2005 Wendel wrote, executive produced and starred in the independent film Cruel But Necessary, which won the Orson Welles Award for Innovative Cinema at the Iowa International Film Festival in 2007. For her role of ‘Betty Munson,’ she received the Outstanding Actress in a Female Role award from the 2007 Winnipeg International Film Festival. She also won Best Performance by a Female at the 2009 Canadian Comedy Awards and a Gemini nomination 2010 for her role of ‘Anne’ in “Less Than Kind.” She will be seen in CBC’s upcoming film “The Phantom.” She is currently producing her animation film, Pinky Lux School for Girls.
CANADIAN SCREEN AWARDS
The CANADIAN SCREEN AWARDS recognize excellence in film, television and digital media productions.
2-Hour Broadcast Live Sunday March 3, 2013 @ 8pm (8:30 N.T) on CBC.