Please click on an image to read each speaker's bio.
National VP Rogers/OMNI
2014 Innoversity Creative Summit Keynote Speaker: Day 1
Madeline Ziniak has been involved in ethnic media for over 30 years and was most recently the National Vice President of Rogers OMNI Television. Madeline is also Chair of the Canadian Ethnic Media Association.
For her dedication throughout her career, Madeline has received the Order of Canada, and the Order of Ontario, The Queen Elizabeth II Golden and Diamond Jubilee Medals, as well as numerous community, government, and industry related honours.
Madeline is former Chair (Ontario Region) of the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council, former Vice Chair of Women in Film and Television - Toronto, a founding member of the Strategic Alliance of Broadcasters for Aboriginal Reflection (SABAR), Co-Chair of the International Press Freedom Awards (Canadian Journalists for Free Expression) and a previous board member of the Canadian Journalism Foundation. She was former CoChair of the Task Force For Cultural Diversity on Television and Chair of the Jury of the Awards of Excellence, Canadian Race Relations Foundation.
Ron E. Scott is an award winning Executive Producer, Writer, and Director with over twenty years of industry experience. After graduating Vancouver Film School in 1993, he founded Prairie Dog Film + Television and has since become a prominent Showrunner in the world of independent television production.
He has been involved in creating four scripted series and his projects have been nominated for over 100 Awards, most recently, Best Dramatic Series and Best Dramatic Writing at the 2014 Canadian Screen Awards.
Scott has appeared on George Stroumboulopoulos Tonight and Entertainment Tonight, and has been featured in Playback, Globe and Mail, National Post, The Hollywood Reporter, TV Guide and on the cover of the DGC Montage Magazine. As a prolific producer and innovator, he has contributed to over 180 episodes of TV that have broadcast globally and is currently in post-production of the fourth season of the groundbreaking 1-hour drama series Blackstone.
Scott is a member of the ACCT, CMPA, DGC, WGC, ACCT, AMPIA, the Aboriginal Filmmakers Program at the NFB, and the Metis Nation of Alberta. He serves on the board of the Alberta Media Production Industry Association as well as the Alberta Film Advisory Council and has acted as a consultant with the Banff Television Festival, Telefilm Canada and the Alberta Foundation for the Arts. Scott has volunteered his time to speak at many conferences and seminars including Industry Canada (ABC), Dreamspeakers, E-Spirit, the National Aboriginal Achievement Foundation, NAIT, and the imagineNATIVE Film Festival.
He was recently honoured with the Queen's Diamond Jubilee Medal, as well as both Achievement in Artistic Direction and Ambassador of the Arts awards at the Mayor's Celebration of the Arts.
Co-founder, Vice Media
Originally launched in 1994 as a punk magazine, VICE has expanded and diversified to include a network of online video channels, a television production studio, a record label, an in-house creative services agency and a book publishing division.
Today VICE is the industry leader in producing and distributing premium web content, featuring over 60 original video series, covering news to travel to music to arts to fashion, and has a network of correspondents and bureaus spanning the globe.
In 2002, Alvi established VICE Music, the company's record label which has partnered with such leading artists as Justice, Action Bronson, Snoop Lion, The Black Lips and Death From Above 1979. In 2011, Alvi launched a strategic partnership between VICE Music and Warner Bros. Records, expanding its presence in the music industry.
In 2007, Alvi co-directed and executive produced the VICE Film, Heavy Metal in Baghdad - an original documentary that follows the Iraqi heavy metal band Acrassicauda from the fall of Saddam Hussein in 2003 to the present day. In 2012, Alvi traveled to Jamaica to produce the feature length film, REINCARNATED, featuring Snoop Lion.
As a journalist, Alvi has covered stories from around the world, reporting from the Democratic Republic of Congo, Pakistan, Afghanistan and the Gaza Strip. Alvi most recently hosted segments for VICE's Emmy Award-winning series VICE on HBO.
Alvi attended college at McGill University in Montreal where he studied Philosophy. Alvi now resides in New York City.
*Suroosh Alvi is an Innoversity keynote speaker on Day 2. October 29th Journalism panel on October 29th.
2014 Innoversity Creative Summit MC
Born and raised in Toronto, Sangita has always excelled in academics while pursuing her passion for performing. And when she applied for university, Sangita found herself in the enviable position of being accepted in both Journalism and Engineering.
Sangita chose Engineering, and graduated as a professional engineer aiding the captains of the industry and yet Sangita kind of missed the media spotlight too.
Sangita volunteered with Rogers Community Television until she eventually reported for the local lifestyle show, Toronto Living, and Rushes, the highlight show for the Toronto International Film Festival, before landing a job at The Weather Network where she could combine her passion for the media with her passion for science.
This eventually led to another opportunity at Toronto's City TV and in March 2013 Sangita joined Canada's premier entertainment show ET Canada ready to talk to the biggest stars on the planet!
Globe and Mail, Author: Crazy Town
Globe and Mail, Author: Crazy Town
Robyn Doolittle is an investigative reporter with The Globe and Mail and the bestselling author of Crazy Town: The Rob Ford Story.
She began her career at the Toronto Star, covering crime and then municipal politics. While on the city hall beat, Doolittle began investigating rumours of the mayor's troubled personal life. In 2014, the Toronto Star was awarded the prestigious Michener Award for its investigation into Rob Ford's substance abuse.
A graduate of Ryerson University's journalism program, Doolittle was named as one of 12 notable alumni at the school's 60th anniversary last fall. She has lived in Toronto since 2002.
Ryerson University/Former Al Jazeera English/CBC
Ryerson University/Former Al Jazeera English/CBC
Tony Burman is former head of CBC News and Al Jazeera English, and now teaches at Ryerson University as Distinguished Visiting Professor of Journalism.
He also writes a weekly column on world affairs for The Toronto Star. He has been associated with Ryerson since September, 2011 as the Velma Rogers Graham Research Chair in News Media and Technology.
While Managing Director of Al Jazeera's English news channel in Qatar from 2008-2010, its worldwide reach more than doubled to 220 million households. In that role, he led the campaign that brought Al Jazeera to Canada in 2009 and expanded it throughout the United States.
While at the CBC, he spent more than three decades as an award-winning news and documentary producer, working in more than 30 countries, including seven years as CBC's Editor-in-Chief.
While he was in charge of CBC news and current affairs - between 2000 and 2007 - the CBC made important strides in diversifying its staffing and programming.
Amazing Race Canada
Amazing Race Canada
From a student internship at U8TV: The Lofters to casting and producing two record-breaking seasons of AMAZING RACE CANADA, Mike Bickerton's career has been unashamedly unscripted.
One of Canada's top reality television creatives, Mike is a people-watcher first and foremost, who loves telling compelling Canadian stories. He has earned a reputation as a skilled director, writer and producer of hit reality, documentary and competition series in Canada.
In addition to freelance production work, Mike often consults on development slates with a variety of production companies across Canada, writing bibles and creating demos. Beyond the screen, he also does live event producing, most notably as a sport presentation producer for the London 2012 Olympic Games.
He recently completed production on the second season of The Amazing Race Canada and wrapped the new W Network competition series Game of Homes, which he directed.
Big shiny international format credits include: The Amazing Race Canada, The Real Housewives of Vancouver, Masterchef Canada, Canadian Idol, So You Think You Can Dance Canada, Top Chef Canada, CANADA'S NEXT TOP MODEL, Asian Idol, and Bachelor Canada.
True North original series credits include: Game of Homes, BATTLE OF THE BLADES, Canada Sings!, Village on a Diet, Child Star, Keasha's Perfect Dress, and Star Racer.
Corus/ OWN/ W NETWORK
Production Executive of Original Programming
In her role as Production Executive of Original Programming at Corus Entertainment, Margot oversees a broad range of original unscripted programs ranging from reality, competition and lifestyle programs across W Network, OWN Canada and CMT Canada.
With more than 20 years of industry experience as a producer, director and story editor, Margot now works closely with independent producers guiding the development of shows from the initial pitch all the way to final launch.
In the past four and a half years at Corus she has overseen the successful launch of shows such as, W Network's Come Dine with Me Canada, CMT's Mom's a Medium, (OWN) Oprah Winfrey Network's Million Dollar Neighborhood, and the upcoming shows, W Network's Million Dollar Critic and W Network's Game of Homes.
The Boston-born, Calgary-bred Andras has a diverse list of television credits to her name. She's spent the last three years as the Showrunner and Executive Producer of Lost Girl, now entering its fifth season on Showcase/SyFy, and is also working on Space/SyFy's Killjoys, which means she finally gets to write about spaceships.
Andras' other recent credits include writer and Co-producer of the police drama King, and Showrunner and Executive Producer of Instant Star. She has written for numerous other series such as Degrassi: The Next Generation, Sophie, Total Drama Island, and 11 Cameras. She is developing Smoke & Mirrors with Shaftesbury for CTV, and Wynonna Earp with the minds behind The Walking Dead for Shaw.
An avid athlete, Andras grew up figure skating and playing rugby. These days she lives in Toronto where she enjoys time with her husband and two small children...but what Emily really wants to be remembered for is being pulled onstage to dance with Bruce Springsteen. Which totally happened.
HGTV's Tackle My Reno
Home Reno Television Host/Former CFL
While new to the world of media, Sebastian has cut into the Reality Television landscape like a masonry blade into concrete.
As the host of Tackle My Reno he is the newest member of HGTV's line up of expert contractors. Although this is his first time hosting a television show, this is not exactly his first time in front of a camera.
You may have watched him on TSN battling it out on the football gridiron with his teams, the BC Lions or the Saskatchewan Roughriders. Those battles resulted in plenty of war wounds, stories and a large chunk of gold and diamonds in the form of a Grey Cup ring.
Introduced to carpentry at a young age, Sebastian honed his skills apprenticing with a renovation contractor throughout high school. Being an energetic and athletic person, Sebastian was very involved in sports and played competitively throughout high school and university. His aspirations of playing at a professional level were realized when he was drafted to the CFL. After retiring from professional sports.
Sebastian returned to carpentry and established his career as an independent contractor specializing in home renovations.
Today he is a popular home renovation show host, contractor and fierce advocate for the environment.
Stephanie Morgenstern is co-creator and executive producer, alongside her partner Mark Ellis, of CBC's new WWII espionage drama Camp X. Produced by Temple Street, it is set to premiere in February 2015.
Ellis & Morgenstern were also co-creators and executive producers on Flashpoint (CBS/CTV/Ion), for which they were designated Showrunners of the Year by the Writers' Guild of Canada.
Flashpoint is licensed in over 100 territories and translated into 22 languages.
They co-wrote twenty of Flashpoint's 75 episodes, earning a Gemini nomination for Best Writing in a Television Drama for 'Haunting The Barn,' a WGC nomination for ‘One Wrong Move,' and winning both the Gemini and the WGC Award for ‘Jumping at Shadows.'
The show received the Academy Board of Directors Tribute for Outstanding and Enduring Contribution to Canadian Television, the 2013 Canadian Screen Award for Best Dramatic Series, and earned them the Sea to Sky Innovative Producers Award at the Banff World Media Festival this year, alongside Bill Mustos and Anne Marie la Traverse.
Morgenstern directed the critically acclaimed short film Remembrance, the precursor to Camp X,which she and Ellis co-wrote and co-starred in. Remembrance won a Jutra Award, a Genie Nomination and the top prize at the Worldwide Short Film Festival. A feature film version of the script took top prize at the Toronto International Film Festival's Pitch This! Competition. Morgenstern was also nominated for a Genie Award for her earlier short film, Curtains, which she wrote, starred in, and co-produced and co-directed with her brother Mark Morgenstern.
Ellis & Morgenstern have been invited to speak on writing for film and television at the Banff World Media Festival, the Toronto Screenwriting Conference, Ryerson University, Humber College, Algonquin College, York University, the Worldwide Short Film Festival and the University of Aarhus / European Film College in Denmark.
‘Playback's Top 5 to Watch in 2014'
‘Playback's Top 5 to Watch in 2014'
Abby Ho is an award winning interactive producer and was picked as Playback Magazine's "Top 5 to Watch" in 2014.
Abby has created multiple mobile apps, videos and social content for the iconic Degrassi series and now at the CBC. Through her time at Epitome Pictures Inc. she built a Digital business unit and a fan community of over 2 million connections across various social media. Now at the CBC Abby is the interactive producer responsible for developing new interactive projects for CBC Comedy brands- CBC Punchline and CBC ComedyCoup.
Abby is an avid trend hunter and is constantly looking for new ways to engage audiences- both professional and personally. Constantly experimenting and curious, she has her finger on the pulse of millennial culture and the digital savvy to develop and execute content, and build community through content.
BELL MEDIA'S Harold Greenberg Fund
Alan Bacchus, a graduate of Queen's University and the Vancouver Film School, is a Toronto-based film industry professional, writer, and filmmaker. As Programs Managerat BELL MEDIA'S Harold Greenberg Fund, Alan is responsible for managing the Script Development Program, the Short-to-Features Program and other Fund initiatives. Alan oversees the adjudication process and works closely with the Fund's clients to ensure the creative and administrative needs of both the Fund and the individual projects are met.
Prior to the Fund worked at the Canadian Film Centre, Capri Films, and Norflicks Productions, in a number of development and production capacities. As a filmmaker Alan has produced and directed a number of short films.
In addition Alan has written for a number of film publications. His film reviews for Exclaim! magazine as well as his personal blog Daily Film Dose are another means of expression for his love of film.
Canadian Film Centre Media Lab
Chief Digital Officer
Canadian Film Centre Media Lab
Ana is the Chief Digital Officer of the Canadian Film Centre and Founder of the CFC Media Lab, the worldrenowned and awardwinning institute for interactive storytelling created in 1997 at the Canadian Film Centre.
With her visionary direction and digitallyforward approach to organizational growth, Ana built the CFC Media Lab into a unique blend of training facility, incubator, and creative production house, that continually reinvents itself as new media demand new approaches - from the early exploration of Webbased entertainment, to today's world of mobile smartphones and iPads.
To date, she directed the development of over 130 interactive media projects, mentored over 50 startups and produced some of Canada's seminal works in interactive media including the influential Great Canadian Story Engine, one of the world's first digital storytelling sites and Late Fragment, the first interactive dramatic feature film to be featured at the Toronto International Film Festival and distributed by Mongrel Media.
Ana is a threetime winner of awards from the Canadian new media industry, and frequently speaks at digital media and film festivals around the world about the emerging realms of interactive art and entertainment. She has sat on boards as varied as the Canadian Conference of the Arts, Virtual Museums of Canada, Laidlaw Foundation, and McLuhan International Multimedia Festival.
Currently, she is active on the boards of Artscape, Kapisanan Arts Centre and several startup companies focusing on interactive entertainment. She is also an Advisor in the Information, Technology and Entertainment Practice at MaRS Discovery District.
President of the Pearson Centre for Progressive Policy
President of the Pearson Centre for Progressive Policy
Andrew Cardozo is President of the Pearson Centre for Progressive Policy, a new think tank that addresses a range of social, economic and international issues.
He was a Commissioner at the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) from 1997 to 2003 and has been a columnist for various publications including Hill Times, the Toronto Star and Broadcast Dialogue.
Since then he has been a consultant and was executive director of the Alliance of Sector Councils, a multi-sectoral industry network that addresses skills development in key sectors of the Canadian economy, a position he has held from 2005 till early 2013.
Andrew is an Adjunct Professor at the School of Journalism and Communication at Carleton University in Ottawa.
His volunteer involvement includes being a board member of the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council (www.cbsc.ca) and the Catholic Centre for Immigrants (www.cic.ca). He is also an artist in his spare time (www.cardozoart.ca)
Andrew has a B.A. (Honours) in Political Science from York University and an M.A. in Public Administration from Carleton University.
National Film Board of Canada
National Film Board of Canada
A multi-award-winning producer with 20 years' experience in the industry and founder of the Toronto Reel Asian International Film Festival, Lee has a stellar track record of connecting and collaborating with top talent on work that pushes both at the NFB and in the independent sector.
As a staff NFB producer from 2005 to the present, Lee has produced some of the most acclaimed and inventive works in recent NFB history, including Sarah Polley's genre-bending Stories We Tell―a film that has resonated with audiences (sold to 20 territories worldwide) and garnered awards at home and abroad, including a number of firsts for the NFB: the Best Canadian Film and Best Documentary awards from the Toronto Film Critics Association, the Canadian Screen Award for Best Feature Documentary, the Best Non-Fiction Film award from the New York Film Critics Circle and the Los Angeles Film Critics Association Award for Best Documentary Film.
Lee also led the NFB's first foray into interactive production as creator/producer of North America's first interactive feature film, Late Fragment (dir. Daryl Cloran, Anita Doron and Mateo Guez), made in collaboration with the CFC Media Lab. Other productions by Lee include the CSA-nominated 3D-documentary hybrid Let the Daylight into the Swamp (dir. Jeffrey St. Jules), which premiered at TIFF, Road Movie (dir. Elle Flanders), a documentary installation invited to TIFF and Berlin, Tiger Spirit (dir. Min Sook Lee), a co-production with Storyline Productions and winner of the Donald Brittain Award for Best Social/Political Documentary, and The Bodybuilder and I, directed by Bryan Friedman, co-produced with January Films, and winner of Best Feature Documentary at Hot Docs.
VP, TV & Digital | Entertainment One
VP, TV & Digital | Entertainment One
Audrey Gardiner currently serves as Vice President, Television and Digital Distribution for Entertainment One Canada, overseeing both the Film and Television divisions' broadcast and digital activities in Canada.
Gardiner handles all licensing activities for the company's robust library of feature film and television content to both linear and digital accounts.
Prior to joining eOne, Gardiner served as Director, TV & Online Sales, at Alliance Films and joined eOne following the company's acquisition in 2013.
Marketing + Community Canada
Ayah Norris leads Marketing and Community in Canada for Indiegogo, the world's funding engine. She works closely with entrepreneurs, creators and community builders across the country to bring their ideas to the world through Indiegogo's open, flexible crowdfunding platform. A passionate crowdfunding advocate, Ayah speaks across Canada at events on crowdfunding, finance, film, digital media, technology and social entrepreneurship, and is regularly featured as a voice for Canadian crowdfunding in media including the Globe and Mail, National Post, Toronto Star, Huffington Post, CBC, Reuters, and Elle Canada.
A storyteller at heart, Ayah is also Co-Creator of The INSIGHT PROJECT, an award winning, crowdfunded digital media platform sharing the stories of grassroots, creative game-changers. She is a graduate of the Queen's School of Business, and led national initiatives in strategy and marketing for one of Canada's leading hospitality brands before making the leap into the creative world. When not crossing the country for Indiegogo or the globe on her next great adventure, Ayah calls Toronto, Ontario home.
*Winner of the 2013 Innoversity Summit Pitch Competition in the Digital Media Storytelling Category.
Production Executive, Drama
Carrie is a Production Executive, Drama with Bell Media and is currently working on Canada's most watched original drama, SAVING HOPE. Recently, Carrie was SVP, Production and Creative Affairs for Northwood Entertainment, a company owned by Miranda de Pencier (BEGINNERS, THANKS FOR SHARING), developing features and series.
Previously Carrie spent over 7 years on the feature film team at Telefilm Canada, where she oversaw over 40 produced projects and supported the careers of dozens of filmmakers. Carrie was also worked on the Experimental team for the Canada Media Fund where she selected highly innovative digital projects for funding.
Between 2000 and 2005, Carrie founded and ran an independent development company, The Development House, that had a roster of independent story consultants and development executives who worked on features as well as scripted and unscripted television.
Prior to 2000, Carrie was VP, Development for Norstar Filmed Entertainment where she oversaw a slate of features.
Cathleen MacDonald (Working Animals, Moving On, Animal IQ Test) is a creative entrepreneur with experience in broadcast and non-broadcast production, digital media, and distribution. She is the founder of Motion Picture Enterprises where she produces screen-based stories that reveal the human and natural worlds and challenge assumptions. She is a former distributor with VEC/Criterion Pictures, serves as a juror and mentor for industry organizations and funders, and is an advisor for the technology group Silicon Peel. She is currently producing the drama series, "Alive", that takes a fresh perspective on mental illness.
William F White International
William F White International
Cher Merlo is a veteran of Canada's film and television industry spanning over two decades. She is currently the Manager of Whites Interactive, a department at WFW dedicated to the empowerment of digital content producers and is responsible for overseeing rentals of the company's popular Viral Vans across the country.
She joined WFW in 2008 as Commercials Coordinator and quickly moved up the ranks to become a Client Service Representative for WFW's Specialty Equipment Department, dealing in state-of-the-art remote heads and cranes.
Cher brings a diverse background in on-set production having worked as a camera assistant for over 20 years on multiple commercials, television series and feature films including "The Hulk," "Silent Hill," and "Hairspray." Her strong understanding of on-set best practices and procedures lend significant value to WFW clients.
Director of Acquisitions
Director of Acquisitions
Christina Kubacki is the Director of Acquisitions for the Canadian film division of Entertainment One, the largest independent film distributor in Canada. In her role, Christina helps to oversee the curation and acquisition of the division's theatrical slate of over 100 pictures per year from sales agents, producers, and other distribution partners.
Christina joined the Canadian division of eOne in June of 2013, and prior to that, was the Manager of Acquisitions for Entertainment One Films International, the international film sales division of the company. In that role she was involved with a number of Oscar-nominated films, including BEASTS OF THE SOUTHERN WILD, INCENDIES, ANIMAL KINGDOM and WASTE LAND.
Christina also programs for the Open Roof Festival, has worked at TIFF and Hot Docs, and holds an MBA with a diploma in Arts Management from the Schulich School of Business at York University, an MA in Cinema and Media Studies from York University, and a BA from Columbia University in the City of New York.
Regional Feature Film Executive, Ontario & Nunavut Regions
Dan Lyon is Telefilm Canada's Regional Feature Film Executive, for the Ontario & Nunavut Regions.
Prior to joining Telefilm Canada, Dan worked primarily as a distributor and executive producer. Originally an entertainment lawyer, Dan joined Astral Bellevue Pathe Inc. in 1985 and ultimately became Executive Vice-President, Distribution for Astral and its successor companies Coscient, Motion and TVA. He subsequently formed his own company Dandelion Entertainment Ventures Inc.
As a distributor, Dan was awarded the Golden Reel for "The Art of War" and was the first independent buyer in the world (at the screenplay stage) for Roman Polanski's "The Pianist" which went on to win the Palme D'Or and three Academy Awards.
Credits as executive producer include "Ginger Snaps", "Red Green's Duct Tape Forever", Jacob Tierney's debut feature "Twist", and "Everything's Gone Green" written by Douglas Coupland. Additional awards include a Peabody (for "The Interrogation of Michael Crowe"). The first project he championed upon joining Telefilm in the fall of 2005 was "Away From Her", which received two Academy Award nominations in January 2008 (Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Actress).
Dan has been involved in many charitable and educational activities related to the film industry. Together with Patricia Rozema, in 2003 he served as the industry mentor for the winners of the WIFT/Kodak award. Dan is currently vice-president of the Board of the Performing Arts Lodge.
Being Erica, Republic of Doyle
Producer, Film and Television
Fred Fuchs is an independent Film and Television Producer and media consultant based in Toronto area. His focus is developing, financing, and producing films and television series for an international audience. With strong ties with US networks and talent from his first 20 years based in Los Angeles and San Francisco, as well as the last 14 years working with Canadian and European networks, Fuchs is uniquely situated to succeed in the independent international TV world.
Recent projects include the second season of THE TRANSPORTER; a 12 x1 hour episode Canadian/French treaty co-production for TNT/HBO Canada/RTL/M6; MOTHER UP!, a 1⁄2 hour prime time animated series for Rogers Media in Canada; HULU in the US starring Eva Longoria; CAMELOT -- a 10 x1 hour episode Canadian/Irish treaty co-production for Starz Entertainment/CBC; and WORLD WITHOUT END, a Canadian/German/Hungary 8 hour mini-series for SHAW MEDIA/PROSIEBEN.
Before becoming an independent, Fuchs was Executive Director of Arts and Entertainment at the CBC, Canada's public broadcaster, for 4 years. He was responsible for developing, commissioning and supervising production of all scripted content including shows such as THE TUDORS, a one hour drama series with Showtime; PILLARS OF THE EARTH, an 8 hour mini-series with Starz Network; LITTLE MOSQUE ON THE PRAIRIE; BEING ERICA and REPUBLIC OF DOYLE. His responsibilities at the CBC also included Children's programming and Arts and Variety shows.
Fuchs began his career as a producer in LA working on award-winning television series like FAERIE TALE THEATRE for SHOWTIME and VIETNAM WAR STORIES for HBO. Fuchs then segued into the feature film industry producing TUCKER: THE MAN AND HIS DREAM, directed by Francis Ford Coppola and executive produced by George Lucas.
For 10 years Fuchs was President of American Zoetrope Studios (Francis Ford Coppola's company) and was Executive Producer of 17 features including THE GODFATHER PART III, BRAM STOKER'S DRACULA, THE SECRET GARDEN, DON JUAN DEMARCO, THE VIRGIN SUICIDES, and JOHN GRISHAM'S THE RAINMAKER. While at Zoetrope Fuchs also started a TV division and was Executive Producer for internationally successful mini-series THE ODYSSEY, MOBY DICK, KIDNAPPED, TITANIC and several TV movies and a multi season episodic series, FIRST WAVE.
This is Fred Fuchs second year as an Innoversity Mentor.
Storage Wars Canada
Series Producer & Writer
(Storage Wars Canada, Redemption Inc with Kevin O'Leary, Canada's Worst Driver, Canada's Worst Handyman, Junk Raiders)
Geoff has helped launch some of Canada's most popular reality television programs including Storage Wars Canada, Redemption Inc with Kevin O'Leary, Canada's Worst Driver, Canada's Worst Handyman and Junk Raiders.
A graduate of the Canadian Film Centre's Interactive Entertainment Program, Geoff directed the interactive documentary Tightrope, which has been presented by many festivals, including SXSW (Austin), IDFA (Amsterdam), and Hot Docs (Toronto).
He's produced many hours of radio programing and documentaries for CBC Radio, including Search Engine (for which he won the New York Festivals' International Broadcasting Award), Outfront, and The Phone Book Stories.
As well he's directed several documentary films including The Mantelpiece - a film about the bizarre migratory route of a taxidermied caribou, which debuted on TVO's The View From Here and The Big Sky Documentary Festival.
Production Executive, Drama
(Orphan Black, 19-2, Flashpoint)
Gosia is a BELL MEDIA Drama Production Executive working on the development and production of original series and is part of the team responsible for accepting and evaluating pitches.
She oversees several dramatic series for Bell Media's family of channels including CTV, MTV, Space, Bravo and TMN/HBO Canada, and sits on the BravoFACT/AUL jury.
Currently a Production Executive on the critically acclaimed Orphan Black for Space, and Degrassi: The Next Generation for MTV.
Gosia also worked on Bravo's original series 19-2, the award-winning Flashpoint, and the MOW The Horses of McBride for CTV. Prior to joining Bell Media, Gosia was a Producer at True West Films (It's All Gone Pete Tong, Everything's Gone Green).
Hungry Eyes Film and Television
Producer & Writer
Jennifer Holness is an award-winning writer and producer. She produced the feature film Home Again with co-writer and director Sudz Sutherland. The film stars Tatyana Ali, Lyriq Bent and CCH Pounder and won the prestigious PAFF-BAFTA Festival Choice Award. The film was also nominated for two Canadian Screen Academy awards and a DGC nod for Best Directing.
Jen also produced the feature Love, Sex and Eating the Bones that won 9 festival awards including the Best First Feature at Toronto International Film Festival in 2003.
She is currently developing two feature projects, the action-comedy Colour Blind and the crime comedy, Operation Red Dog. On the TV side, Jennifer co-created, wrote and produced the thirteen-part comedy series She's The Mayor.
Jennifer produced the two-part CBC miniseries, Guns, staring Elisha Cuthbert and Colm Feore that won five Geminis' including a shared best writing award for Jen.
Jennifer is currently co-writing the TV series Shoot The Messenger for CBC about cops and journalists. She is also working on several digital projects including adapting her award-winning digital app The Music Biz into an animated series.
Feature Film/Video Games/Books
Lamin Martin is a concept designer whose experience spans the spectrum, including video games (Big Fish Games, Disruptor Beam), feature film (Pixels), television (The Comedy Network) augmented reality (Augmented World Entertainment) and package art (IDW publishing), among many others.
Lamin has also written and illustrated several art books and has instructed workshops and lectures at galleries, schools and publicly to students and professionals.
National Film Board of Canada
Producer, Shorts & Features
Lea Marin's film credits include a wide range of short dramatic films, documentary series and features that have screened at international festivals and on television, including: the 2014 CSA nominated documentary, My Prairie Home; The Portrait, directed by Oscar-nominated filmmaker Hubert Davis; the interactive documentary The Next Day; and Astra Taylor's Examined Life.
Prior to joining the NFB in 2006, Marin produced the award-winning short film Escape, and was a line producer for Barna-Alper on the Discovery Channel series Mega Builders.
Urban Post Production
Executive Producer, Co-Owner Urban Post, Co-Owner Silver Snail Comics
Urban Post Production
Mark Gingras is a multiple Genie, Gemini, and Director's Guild award winning sound designer and co-owner of Urban Post Production Inc. a Toronto based full service post production studio.
He began his career in the early 90s working on location for IMAX, touring with The Rolling Stones on "The Rolling Stones, Live: At The Max". He was then fortunate enough to sharpen his craft under the tutelage of Canada's foremost directors, Norman Jewison and David Cronenberg, working on such films as "The Hurricane" and "eXistenZ".
Since then he has supervised soundtracks on a wide array of feature film and television projects ranging from the "Saw" horror franchise to the Emmy award winning "The Kennedys" mini-series.
Urban Post Production recently acquired the 400 seat Royal theatre on College St. where Urban will continue its long tradition of operating as a post facility by day, and rep cinema for independent, second-run films, and local film festivals by night.
In his spare time, Mark is co-owner of The Silver Snail, the largest independently owned retailer of comic books and graphic novels in Canada.
In 2012, along with his partners at Urban Post Production, he founded Vigilante Productions Inc. in order to provide production assistance and invest in independent Canadian filmmaking. Since that time he has served as an Executive Producer on Bruce McDonald's "The Husband" and Jeffrey St. Jules' "Bang Bang Baby", both of which premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival.
Other Executive Producer credits include the thriller "Solo" which took 2nd After Dark Film Festival and the upcoming feature films "The Dark Stranger", "Khoya", and the Norwegian thriller "The Doll In The Ceiling".
When not doing any of those things, he likes to hide at his café on Sherbourne St, "The Black Canary", drinking triple espressos to ensure his heart rate never drops below 120 beats per minute.
Pier 21 Films
Head of Development
Pier 21 Films
Melissa Williamson joined veteran TV and film producer Laszlo Barna in 2010 during the founding of Toronto-based prodco, Pier 21 Films. Recently named one of Playback's ‘5 to Watch' and The Hollywood Reporter's ‘Next Gen: 20 Young Canadian Stars on the Rise in Hollywood' in 2013, Williamson currently oversees Pier 21's scripted and factual development slate. Her recent producing work includes: Jack, a made-for-TV movie about the late Canadian politician, Jack Layton, the multi-season international co-production Treasures Decoded and two CBC mini-series about Canadian sportscaster, Don Cherry.
The Winnipeg-born producer began her career in Los Angeles with independent, Blueprint Entertainment.
Following the 2008 acquisition of Blueprint by Entertainment One (eOne), Williamson served as a Manager for eOne's TV division where she developed and worked on programs such as Force of Nature: The David Suzuki Movie, which won the audience favourite award at the 2010 Toronto International Film Festival. Other series titles include half-hour comedy Call Me Fitz, MTV USA's UK format Skins and the award-winning mini-series, The Don Cherry Story I & II.
Michelle Latimer is an actor, filmmaker and curator. Her award-winning documentary, ALIAS, premiered at the 2013 Hot Docs Film Festival before screening internationally. Prior to that, her short film Choke premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, received a Special Jury Honorable Mention in International Short Filmmaking, was named by Toronto Film Festival among Canada's Top Ten of 2012 and nominated for a Genie Award.
Michelle has produced numerous short films, including the documentary Jackpot which was nominated for two Gemini Awards. Michelle is alumni of the Toronto Film Festival's Talent Lab and the inaugural STUDIO Producer's Program.
As an actor, she starred in the critically acclaimed television series Blackstone, and appears as an industry judge on CBC's, Short Film Face Off. She programs for both the ImagineNATIVE and Hot Docs International Film Festivals. In 2013, Michelle was named among Playback's 10 To Watch.
Her latest short film The Underground was selected for Cannes 2014: Telefilm's Not Short on Talent spotlight and the Toronto International Film Festival. She is currently developing her first hybrid feature in collaboration with Sienna Films and the National Film Board of Canada, as well as a dramatic television series with Back Alley Films and Muse Entertainment.
*Winner of the 2013 Innoversity Summit Pitch Competition in the Bell Media Sponsored TV SCRIPTED Category.
MICHELLE MAMA is an award-winning filmmaker and a prolific factual television producer and director with over a hundred of hours of Canadian and International programming under her belt.
Michelle cut her teeth in distribution, facilitating sales and attending markets like MIPCOM in Cannes. Her subsequent move into production saw her earliest work as a producer on hit documentary shows LOVING SPOONFULS (WTN), and the groundbreaking documentary series KINK (Toronto Season) for Showcase Television. Her first foray into the feature film world was on the Genie-Nominated feature film SUGAR (2004). Soon afterward, Michelle produced her first independent feature film, YOUR BEAUTIFUL CUL DE SAC HOME (2007).
The explosion of factual television over the last decade saw Michelle direct hit shows like YTV's THE NEXT STAR, HGTV's MARRIAGE UNDER CONSTRUCTION, Slice's RENOVATE MY WARDROBE and become Showrunner on Food Network's Gemini-nominated show, RESTAURANT MAKEOVER. She was the director, story editor (and on-camera host!) for CBC's FASHION FILE: HOST HUNT and has continued to direct shows like BIG VOICE and COME DINE WITH ME CANADA (W Network) NATURAL BORN DEALERS and BIRTH OF A CAR (Discovery Channel), the massive reboot of RECIPE TO RICHES (CBC), and OMNI's version of the hit UK format BOLLYWOOD STAR. Michelle is also the Series Producer of two seasons of DONUT SHOWDOWN for Food Network and Cooking Channel (USA)
In 2009, Michelle went to Iraq to shoot her multi-award-winning first documentary feature, 21 DAYS TO NAWROZ (2009), a labour of love that she produced, directed, and story edited. She is currently producing the feature film adaptation of Zoe Whittall's critically acclaimed first novel BOTTLE ROCKET HEARTS (voted one of "Canada's Essential Top 10 Novels of the Decade" by CBC's Canada Reads), and in development on a number of exciting documentary projects.
White Pine Pictures
Director, Producer, journalist and Writer
Peter Raymont is an Emmy Award-winning director, producer, journalist and writer who has produced and directed over 100 documentaries and TV drama series during his 43-year career. Raymont's productions are often provocative investigations of hidden worlds in politics, the media, and big business. His films are informed with a passion for human rights and social justice.
His productions have won over 40 international awards, including the Sundance, Berlin, Genie, Gemini and Directors Guild of Canada Awards.
Raymont's documentaries include Shake Hands With The Devil, a harrowing film on the Rwandan genocide as seen through the eyes of former Lieutenant-General Roméo Dallaire, and Bhopal: Search For Justice on the 1984 Union Carbide gas disaster in Bhopal, India, co-directed with with late wife and partner, Lindalee Tracey. Causing the death of over fifteen thousand people, and permanently disabling hundreds of thousands more, the Union Carbide tragedy remains the world's worst chemical industry disaster. He has filmed in Rwanda, Ethiopia, Nicaragua, India, Chile, the High Arctic and elsewhere.
Other films directed by Raymont include A Promise To The Dead: The Exile Journey Of Ariel Dorfman, and Genius Within: The Inner Life Of Glenn Gould, co-directed with Michele Hozer. Both were shortlisted for an Academy Award and premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival.
Raymont has multiple projects in development and production including Guantanamo's Child, a documentary on Omar Khadr, co-directed and co-produced by journalist Michelle Shephard and filmmaker Pat Reed, and All Governments Lie: Truth Deception, and the "Children" of I.F. Stone, co-produced with Fred Peabody and Jeff Cohen, a film on how Stone's career has influenced the current, new wave of independent investigative journalists.
Raymont has also recently crossed over into TV drama series producing the hit shows "The Border" and "Cracked".
Vision TV Founder
Dr. Rita Shelton Deverell's work has included stints as an academic, broadcaster, television producer, arts administrator, and theatre artist. Most recently, in June 2013 she released Women, Contemporary Aboriginal Issues, and Resistance, a best practices kit with the sponsorship of the Social Sciences and Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) . Recent acting credits include The Hush Baby at Stratford's SpringWorks Festival 2013 and The Mother Club for Black History Month 2014 in Halifax. Deverell is currently in development for a theatrical documentary, two books, and continues to serve as a Consultant to APTN. She was the 12th holder of Nancy's Chair in Women's Studies at Mount Saint Vincent University from 2009-12, and is an Adjunct Professor MSVU until 2017. Deverell is a founder of Vision TV. She has produced or executive produced hundreds of TV shows. Since 2005 RJ Deverell Productions has produced 15 theatre pieces and TV dramas, plus Rita has edited or contributed to three books. Give Voice: 10 plays from the Obsidian Theatre Playwrights Unit is available from Playwrights Canada Press. While resident in Halifax she acted in an award-winning short film about aging, Rhonda's Party, and an episode of CBC radio's Backbencher. Deverell is a two-time Gemini Award winner and was recognized in 2005 with the Order of Canada.
Senior Media Leader and Not for Profit
Senior Media Leader and Not for Profit
Sadia is a senior leader with an extensive career history in media, cultural industries, and not-for-profits. She directs teams through internal and external transitions, provides financial oversight, manages external stakeholder relations and drives a results-oriented vision. This is supported by an extensive management portfolio in production, as well as deep engagement with the independent production community and not-for-profits.
Most recently Sadia was Director, Original Program Development, CBC News and Centres. She led the development and acquisition of hundreds of hours of programming through an independent production fund tied directly to the President's regional mandate. For three years, Sadia was also the Executive Director of Women in Film and Television-Toronto, a high profile not-for-profit. Before she moved to WIFT-T, Sadia helped create hundreds of hours of original, critically acclaimed content for VisionTV.
Sadia's work has been nominated for five Geminis and she has won two as part of a team. She has also received dozens of other industry awards and been honoured through Women Who Inspire. In 2012 Sadia was selected as one of six female media leaders in Canada to take part in the Creative Leaders program. In 2007 she was a finalist for the Atkinson Fellowship in Public Policy. She has been named a trailblazer by the Reelworld Film Festival and in 1998 was one of four Canadian journalists awarded a prestigious Southam Fellowship for Journalists at Massey College, University of Toronto.
Sadia is often asked to speak at conferences and other events on a range of media, diversity, gender and leadership issues.
Production Executive, Original Drama Content
Susan Alexander is a Production Executive with Shaw Media, overseeing the development and production of a variety of dramatic series for Global and Showcase including Remedy, Bomb Girls, Haven, and Copper.
Prior to becoming a broadcaster, Susan was on the production side of the Canadian industry for over 20 years. As a Producer and writer on various dramatic series including the critically acclaimed Little Mosque on the Prairie, she has garnered various awards, including a Gemini.
While Director of Development for two of Canada's leading production companies, Susan was involved in the development and production of many successful projects for CTV, CBC, Global and Showcase.
In addition to drama, Susan has been the Supervising Producer on over 100 episodes of lifestyle programming, including the hit series Designer Guys and Style Department for HGTV.
Susan is a member of the Writers Guild of Canada and the Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television. She is a graduate of the Canadian Film Centre and is currently the TV mentor for their prestigious Film programme.
Tessa Sproule (Co-Founder, VUBBLE) is a digital innovator, visionary leader and change agent with an intense clarity of vision for the future and proven intuition for identifying opportunities in the unrelenting advance of disruptive technologies in the media space.
For nearly two decades, she worked with the CBC at the cutting edge as the media landscape changed, leading legacy media's response through the dramatically shifting storytelling space.
Now she takes a place at the front of the shift as the co-founder VUBBLE, a soon-to-launch digital content discovery service that merges human curation with artificial intelligence in the on-demand short-form video space.
Founder/Editor, Producer (The Raid, Spring, Frankenstein's Army)
Todd Brown is the founder and editor of international film website Twitch Film, the Director of International Programming for Austin's Fantastic Fest - the largest genre film festival in the US - and the Head of International Acquisitions for XYZ Films, where he has served as a producer on films such as Indonesian action hit The Raid, Rotterdam selection Frankenstein's Army and this year's Toronto International Film Festival selection, Spring.
The Firm (TV)
Born and raised in Toronto, Paula Devonshire graduated with a business degree from the University of Toronto. She began her film career in post production working on major network TV series such as DUE SOUTH and LA FEMME NIKITA. Paula attended the prestigious Canadian Film Centre's Producer's Lab where she teamed up with fellow alumni and subsequently produced on the dramatic features TREED MURRAY (Bill Phillips) and NOTHING from noted sci-fi director Vincenzo Natali (Cube, Splice).
She was the in-house production supervisor at Copper Heart Entertainment for several years. While at Copper Heart Paula worked on the Oscar winning animated film RYAN. She also produced her debut feature films UNLEASHED and THE BEGINNING, the two sequels to the critically acclaimed independent feature GINGER SNAPS.
Paula produced the REAL TIME, was co-producer on George A. Romero's DIARY OF THE DEAD and went on to partner with Romero to produce SURVIVAL OF THE DEAD which premiered at the Venice Film Festival. Paula has also produced on Serendipity Point Films' comedy features YOU MIGHT AS WELL LIVE and THE RIGHT KIND OF WRONG. Paula worked at E1 Television as a Production Executive supervising several TV shows in production and development. Her television producing credits include PURE PWNAGE, MEN WITH BROOMS, and JOHN GRISHAM'S THE FIRM. Paula recently completed production on the psychological thriller THE DARK STRANGER and the coming of age drama WET BUM. Paula has just wrapped production on Atom Egoyan's new feature REMEMBER.
Paula is an active member of ImagiNative (the largest aboriginal film festival in the world) acting as Treasurer on the Board of Directors. Paula is also a member of the Director's Guild of Canada and the Canadian Media Producer's Association.
DEVONSHIRE PRODUCTIONS INC
Devonshire Productions specializes in developing and producing domestic and international films. DPI produced REAL TIME starring Randy Quaid and Jay Baruchel which opened Slamdance 2008 and had its Canadian Premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival. DPI produced George Romero's SURVIVAL OF THE DEAD, which premiered in Venice followed by TIFF 2009. DPI's the coming of age feature drama WET BUM is world premiering at TIFF 2014. DPI's latest psychological thriller THE DARK STRANGER is currently in post production. Projects in development are BACKWATER, DEAD & BURIED and WARG a co-production with Sweden.
What Girls Learn
Business Affairs specialist & Producer
Colette Johnson-Vosberg is President of Firestarter Business Affairs that specializes in television, film and digital business affairs and preparing funding applications. Colette provides services to independent producers and broadcasters to strategize in tax credit and funding applications that builds on their revenue model to exploit original content in television, film and digital platforms. Colette has over 13 years' experience in drafting and negotiating broadcast, distribution and talent agreements, rights management and funding partner deliverables.
In the creative field, Colette has written, directed and produced two shorts, one drama entitled "Gotta Get Ahead" and the other a documentary, entitled "The Hootenanny", as well as worked on CFC shorts and MOW's for Showtime, such as "What Girls Learn" with Elizabeth Perkins and Scott Bakula. Colette has a unique background of having been in the fields of production, broadcasting, distribution and CMF/Telefilm funding agency that has established well-rounded expertise in the TV, Film and digital industry as a whole.
Workshops and Panels Colette has facilitated:
Media Business Institute: Toronto: Half day workshop
WIFT/Humber College: Toronto: Half day workshop
Film Training Manitoba: Winnipeg: 2 day workshop
Newfoundland and Labrador Film Development Corporation: 2 day workshop
Innoversity Summit 2013: Chaired panel discussion - alternative ways of financing your project
Bell Media's The Harold Greenburg Fund
Bell Media's The Harold Greenburg Fund
John Galway (President of Bell Media's The Harold Greenberg Fund): a MBA graduate with twenty-five years of experience in film and television, John's career ranges from film festivals, to production and financing.
After staring his career at TIFF and with the launch of Cinematheque Ontario, his interest in development and production led a position with Peter O'Brian's Independent Pictures and contract work on several film and television projects. He then moved into financing, with positions at the Ontario Media Development Corporation, the Canadian Media Fund and at Telefilm Canada where he served as a Regional Director and the Television Sector Head.
In 2005, he joined The Harold Greenberg Fund as President and Board Member. At the Fund, he has overseen investments of more than $30 Million and has helped develop over 1000 feature film and television projects. In addition to the main feature film development and production programs, John has overseen partnerships and funding support for film festivals, script writing labs, film promotion initiatives and awards, documentaries and short film projects. Recently, he steered the Fund through the merger of Bell Media and Astral.
He is also the co-founder of the Toronto Irish Film Festival and sits on various industry boards, juries and advisory committees.
Benjamin began his career in the film industry as an orchestrator and a composer. Since 2008, he has been active in the field of post-production and co-founded two state-of-the-art post production facilities in Montreal, providing services to various worldwide multimedia productions and clients including Warner Bros., Fox Searchlight, Alliance Films, The Weinstein Company, CBC Canada, TV5, Ubisoft, EA Games, and Leo Burnet, among others. During his career Benjamin has been involved in such diverse productions as "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix," "The Border," and "The Recruit."
As a composer his music is being constantly used on major television and advertising, on all continents. His work can be heard on networks including CNN, ABC, NBC, FOX, BBC, Discovery Channel, History Channel, HGTV, and shows such as America's Got Talent, American Idol, The Oprah Winfrey Show, among others.
In 2010, he founded BV Films, with the vision to produce and develop films for all genres and media. To date the company has succeeded in developing strategic partnerships and production deals with major players in the film and television market, and have aid sourcing over $20 million dollars in private equity and gap financing.
Benjamin continues to hone his skills as a producer by joining international productions with established producers. He is currently producing a touching WWI drama. "Gallipoli" will be shot on location in Turkey and Australia in partnership with Arclight Films and to be distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures. In 2013, he commenced a partnership with group Digital Dimension, an award winning and leading Visual Effects and Animation Company, for the purpose of developing and producing a slate of animation and theatrical feature films set to release as early as 2015.
Benjamin is a member of Society of Composers and Lyricist. He is also an honorary judge of the Canadian "Rosie Awards", as a consultant to the Alberta Motion Pictures Industries Association (AMPIA), and he has been a guest lecturer at various Universities and Organization.
William F White International Inc.
Manager of Education and Training
William F White International Inc.
Bruce Dale began his career at William F. White International working in the Back-shop handling and bar-coding the lighting and grip equipment. From there he moved on to become a CSR in the Lighting & Grip Department, and handled everything from commercials to long-format Canadian independent films.
Now in his seventh year at Whites, Dale is now the Manager of Education and Training in a newly created department designed to provide positive and constructive learning opportunities for Whites' staff, post-secondary students, and industry professionals.
Dale was the Program Director and Arts Instructor at Imagination Works, School of the Arts for five years, prior to his time at Whites. Full-course curriculum writing, leadership training, visual arts, and film/video production and post-production are the core subjects of which Dale taught.
Dale teaches annually at the Ontario Educational Leadership Centre where he collaborates with teachers from across Ontario to facilitate arts programming that focuses on dynamic leadership development.
During his time at Whites, he worked in the professional film community on set as a P.A., Grip, and Camera Assistant. And for seven years, he also collaborated with various producers and directors as a Storyboard and Concept Artist.
Recognized for his multi-disciplinary artistic abilities, ambition, and perseverance, Dale has been a practicing independent filmmaker and visual artist for the past ten years.
He strives to produce work that provokes thought, encourages dialogue between people, entertains, and builds a natural hybrid between the "grass-roots" values of filmmaking and the production quality of the industry.
His work focuses on topics that involve the human element; everything from the simple pause of smoking a cigarette, to the systemic roots of racism, to the imaginary world inhabited by a child.
Canadian Film Centre
Executive In Charge Of Project Development & Packaging
Isabel is the CFC's Executive in Charge of Project Development & Packaging, where she oversees the development of film and TV projects through the Cineplex Entertainment Film program, the Short Dramatic Film program and all cross-border initiatives including the Telefilm Canada Features Comedy Exchange, the Tribeca All Access program and the NBC Universal Canada TV Series Exchange. She plays a key role in the strategic design and delivery of the CFC'S project focused initiatives and is responsible for building on international marketplace opportunities and brokering relationships for CFC alumni and their projects.
Previously, Isabel spent 4 years as the CFC's Executive in Charge of Production & Post where she was responsible for overseeing the development, production and delivery of over 350 productions. She is a CFC producer alumna and holds a BFA in Drama in Education from Concordia University and a MFA in Acting from York University. Isabel was co-writer and co-host of the Gemini-nominated lifestyle series, My Messy Bedroom, has produced 7 short films and consulted on over 100 features. She has participated on industry advisories, juries and panels for the Toronto International Film Festival, Innoversity, ACTRA, the Worldwide Short Film Festival, Green Screen Toronto and the Whistler Film Festival and has been a producer mentor for Tribeca Film Institute's feature pitches and MTV's 48 Fest during the XVI International AIDS Conference.
Isabel is a voting member of the Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television, a member of Women in Film & Television Toronto, Independent Film Project NYC and Film Independent LA. She is currently in the process of completing a global EMBA at the University of Toronto and University of St Gallen, Switzerland.
Director of Canadian Programming
Julie Di Cresce is the Director of Canadian Programming at Super Channel where she is responsible for pre-licensing feature films and overseeing series in production.
She most recently held the post of Director of Original Programming for Movie Central/HBO Canada where she pre-bought feature films as well as developed and oversaw original series.
She was the Program Advisor for the 2013 NSI Features First film program and the Program Manager for the inaugural Bell Media Producer Accelerator Lab.
Laurie May has been in the Canadian film distribution business for over twenty years. She is currently Co-President of Elevation Pictures, a Canadian distribution company launched at the 2013 Toronto Film Festival. Elevation has already established itself as a significant player in the Canadian distribution landscape, with titles such as The Imitation Game winning the prestigious 2014 TIFF People's Choice Award.
Prior to Elevation, she was Executive Vice President of Entertainment One, following the purchase of Alliance Films in January 2013. Laurie had joined Alliance as Executive Vice President when they purchased Maple Pictures in August 2011, and at Alliance had an active role in corporate matters and acquisitions including Academy nominated Zero Dark Thirty and American Hustle. Laurie had been Co-President and Co-Founder of Maple Pictures from April 2005 until the sale to Alliance. At Maple she was involved in successful releases including Academy Award winners Crash, The Hurt Locker, Precious and The Cove, and Emmy award winner Mad Men.
Prior to Maple, Laurie was Senior Vice President of Business & Legal Affairs for Lionsgate from 1997-2005. In this capacity, she oversaw legal matters involving production and distribution, as well as corporate responsibilities including the syndicated facility with JP Morgan and the acquisitions of Trimark Pictures and Artisan Entertainment.
She also sat on the board of directors of Lionsgate from 2005-2010. Prior to working in the film industry, she received her law degree from the University of Toronto Law School, practiced corporate and entertainment law at Oslers for clients including Warner Bros., and was an adjunct professor of Entertainment and Sports Law at the Western University Law School. Laurie has acted as a mentor for Women in Film and Television and in 2010 was the recipient of the WIFT Outstanding Achievement Award for her accomplishments in, and contributions to, the film industry in Canada.
Canadian Film Centre
Canadian Film Centre TV Programs
Kryssta has worked extensively in both Vancouver and Toronto as a Development Executive on television, feature films and web - based content, and was a valuable member of the team that created and delivered CODE, the Cultural Olympiads Digital Edition; a five - stream digital content program for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games.
Previously the Whistler Film Festivals' Industry Program Producer, Kryssta now manages the Canadian Film Centre TV Programs, where she is responsible for managing the application/selection process, strategic curriculum development and delivery of the Bell Media Prime Time TV Program and the Bell Media Showrunner Bootcamp, in addition to fostering ongoing relationships with key industry players and TV alumni.
A CFC Producer alumna, Kryssta's producing credits include Associate Producer on Director Bruce McDonald's feature The Tracey Fragments, and co-producer of the feature Sheltered Life, by Director Carl Laudan, and the Genie nominated sex comedy Year of the Carnivore, by Writer/Director Sook-Yin Lee. Kryssta began her career as an Assistant Director, working on the set of the Television series The X-Files, and the long running Canadian series Cold Squad, before moving into Producing.
Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television
Director of Awards and Special Events
Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television
Louis Calabro is the Director of Awards and Special Events at the Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television, as well as Founder and Director of the Prism Prize, a national arts award presented to the best Canadian music video of the year.
In 2005, Calabro cofounded Goin' Steady Productions, acting as DJ and producer for 200+ events in Toronto and Montréal, including the longrunning Goin' Steady and Chronologic dance parties.
Calabro has performed original stage material at such prestigious events as Nuit Blanche and Trampoline Hall and in 2006 began the performance series, The End of the Internet featuring bestselling Canadian poet, Christian Bök and Baltimore absurdist composer Dan Deacon. Calabro's first text, Stop Here on Red Signal 96 was published by Lyrical Myrical Press in 2005.
A graduate of the University of Toronto with a Major in Cinema Studies, Louis lives and works in Toronto.
Digital Strategy Developer
Digital Strategy Developer
Mark is a connector, a business developer and an educator with 17 years of international experience in digital strategy development, capacity building, sales and marketing. He has helped thousands of organizations and individuals across the globe create business opportunities by leveraging digital technologies.
He began his career working in Singapore by creating and hosting technology-focused curriculum to college students at Ngee Ann Polytechnic. From there and during the dot com boom he worked with acclaimed Internet consultancy firm Razorfish in London and Milan to sell and deliver digital solutions to Fortune 500 clients.
More recently he ran the training program for Canada's most innovative digital incubator called the CFC Media Lab. Mark built Canada's leading series of digital business conferences called nextMEDIA and subsequently ran an organization that produces business facilitation and industry growth programs.
He has completed a Masters of Education at the University of Toronto and is passionate about fostering entrepreneurialism throughout the world to generate new wealth and solve critical issues.
Executive Vice President & General Manager
Feature Film Distribution
With over 15 years' experience in the film and television industry, Naveen Prasad currently serves as Executive Vice President and General Manager of Elevation Pictures Corp. In his role, Naveen oversees distribution across all media as well as business development for the company.
Prior to Elevation Pictures, Naveen served as Senior Vice President, Television & Digital at Entertainment One Films, overseeing all aspects of the company's Television and Digital distribution activities. He served in the same position at Alliance Films prior to its acquisition by eOne.
Naveen joined Alliance (then a part of conglomerate Alliance Atlantis) in 2000, holding a wide variety of positions along the way. His experience at the company includes theatrical sales, transactional distribution and marketing, broadcast and Over-The-Top licensing, content acquisitions and working closely with the independent Canadian production community. Naveen also had played a key role in the re-launch of Alliance Films' television production business after a lapse of many years.
Prior to joining Alliance Films, Naveen was manager of the Sales Office, the industry market hub at The Toronto International Film Festival. Prior to TIFF, Naveen was Label Manager at GDN Records, an independent Cuban music label.
Naveen currently serves as a founding board member at Hollywood Suite, a Canadian multiplex television channel. Hollywood Suite currently operates the Warner Films Channel, The MGM Channel, The Sony Movie Channel and AXN Movies. He is also on the board of the Bell Media Fund and CAFDE, the Canadian Association of Film Distributors and Exporters.
Canadian Film Centre
Executive in Charge of Production & Post-Production
Canadian Film Centre
Rechna Varma is the Executive in Charge of Production& Post-Production at the Canadian Film Centre and is responsible for overseeing the development, production and post-production of all CFC short films, TV Teasers, Actors' Conservatory Close-Ups, The Slaight Music Residency showcase pieces and all film production exercises. She plays an integral role in curriculum development for the Cineplex Entertainment Film Program and the Short Dramatic Film Program and works closely with the CFC's film, TV, acting and music residents, providing them with ongoing mentorship as it relates to both the practical and creative aspects of production. She is also responsible for building and maintaining the CFC's strong industry relationships with cast, crew, unions, guilds and suppliers.
An alumna of the Cineplex Entertainment Film Program Producers' Lab, Varma is a Toronto-based producer with credits including the award-winning short created through the Short Dramatic Film Program IF I SEE RANDY AGAIN DO YOU WANT ME TO HIT HIM WITH THE AXE? Her additional film and TV credits include Associate Producer for TV series The Smart Woman's Survival Guide, Story Producer on Party Mamas, Business Affairs Associate on the breakout web/TV series Pure Pwnage, Line Producer on the feature film The Last New Year for the Nightingale Company, and Producer on the award-winning feature film Margarita.
Varma was an Associate Producer at the National Film Board of Canada and spent four years as Project Manager for Vancouver's Digital Film Group where she oversaw the delivery of several productions including The Take (Avi Lewis, director), Scary Movie 3, the award-winning documentary The Corporation, NBC's mini-series 10.5 and restoration of the infamous feature Heaven's Gate.
Varma is a 2016 Executive MBA candidate with the Rotman School of Business at the University of Toronto and the University of St. Gallen, Switzerland.
Tassie Cameron is a Gemini Award-winning screenwriter, who has written for television series, MOWs, mini-series, and feature films. Tassie is currently co-creator, executive producer and showrunner on the hit series, Rookie Blue, now in production on its sixth season for Global and ABC.
Co-Executive Producer on the first season of CTV's hit series, Flashpoint, Tassie's other credits include The Robber Bride, Would Be Kings, The Eleventh Hour, Degrassi: The Next Generation, Tom Stone, Wild Roses, Fast Food High, Raising the Bar (TNT), and the romantic comedy, Cake.
Tassie has a Masters in Film from NYU, and is a graduate of the Canadian Film Centre.
TV and Media critic
TV and Media critic
Veteran columnist Bill Brioux is one of the leading voices on the Canadian media and television scene. Besides contributing weekly to The Canadian Press, his stories also appear in The Toronto Star, Hello! Canada, Movie Entertainment magazine and his daily blog, TV Feeds My Family.
His career began at the Canadian edition of TV Guide. Later, as daily television columnist for The Toronto Sun, his humorous - and always outspoken - take on television and pop culture garnered numerous accolades, including three consecutive Edward A. Dunlop Awards for critical writing.
Since leaving The Sun in 2007, Brioux has emerged as a key pundit in a variety of radio, television and on-line forums. He has been called upon to moderate panels at the Banff World Media Festival, Prime Time in Ottawa and the Canadian International Television Festival. In 2012, he established The TV on Film Project, an initiative to track down and preserve lost television, with screenings in Toronto and Los Angeles. His book, "Truth & Rumors: The Reality Behind TV's Most Famous Myths," is available from Greenwood Publishing.
Discovery Networks Canada
Manager, Program Development
As Manager of Program Development, Heather Williamson oversees a development slate that averages 100 + hours at any time. She is responsible for all incoming proposals from Canadian and international production companies. Working closely with producers, Heather advises on how to best tailor their projects to suit Discovery's audience and scheduling needs for both broadcast and digital formats.
Heather came to Programming in 2004 after successfully serving as Manager of On-Air Promotions producing award winning promos for the Discovery Networks. As well, Heather has over 14 years of Production and live event experience.
Most recently Heather worked as Production Executive on Discovery Channel Canada's Gemini award winning ‘Fire Jammers', ‘How It's Made', ‘Paws for Autism' a special for Animal Planet, as well as ‘Manufactured' and ‘London Next Stop'.
Senior Director, Commissioned and Scripted Programming, Drama
Helen Asimakis was appointed Senior Director, Drama, Commissioned and Scripted Programming in October 2013. She leads the team responsible for managing the creative development and production of CBC Television's slate of dramatic programming, including series, limited series, mini-series and TV movies.
Helen joined the CBC in 2001 as an Executive in Charge of Production, Drama. During this period she oversaw the development and production of such varied projects as Heartland, Republic of Doyle, Keep Your Head up Kid: The Don Cherry Story and its sequel - Wrath of Grapes, Mr. Hockey: The Gordie Howe Story, Trudeau II: Maverick in the Making to name a few.
Helen has worked in the television industry since 1988 and has a broad knowledge of production, distribution and management. Prior to CBC, Helen held a variety of positions, including Supervisor of Program Development and Production at CTV; Story Editor and Director of Development at Sullivan Entertainment; Associate Producer at Sarrazin Couture Entertainment as well as overseeing the management of Sarrazin's corporate head office in Toronto.
RTR Media, 'Income Property'
Creative Head, RTR Media
Executive PRoducer, 'Income Property'
As Creative Head of RTR Media, Jenna oversees development of new concepts and the creative advancement of existing successful series.
A passion for generating ideas, developing new formats and simply being a part of what's new and next, Jenna has enjoyed the challenge of working on new networks and first seasons of many successful series including Canadian Idol.
Jenna has a wide range of experience in production, development and broadcasting with a specialty in lifestyle and reality television.
She produced shows for one of the world's first digital channels U8TV.com and The Lofters . (2001) A true hybrid of linear and digital television. Prior to joining RTR, Jenna spent a number of years as a Production Executive at HGTV Canada and Food Network Canada where she enjoyed working with producers to create hits.
As a freelancer, Jenna held positions as Showrunner, Developer, Field Director and Story Editor.
Currently Creative Head at RTR Media and Executive Producer on 'Income Property', the winner of 2013 Canadian Screen Award for Best Lifestyle series.
Jenna graduated with a BFA Honours, York University: Film and Video Production.
Producer and partner at Sienna Films
Producer and partner at Sienna Films
Jennifer Kawaja is a producer and partner at Sienna Films, where she produces feature films and television with Julia Sereny. Sienna Films' feature films include Unless, an upcoming feature based on the book by best-selling author Carol Shields, How She Move, Touch of Pink, New Waterford Girl and Marion Bridge screened at film festivals including Sundance, TIFF and Rotterdam and have been released worldwide by distributors including Sony Pictures Classics and Paramount Vantage.
Television projects include upcoming series The John Cardinal Mysteries for Bell Media, Combat Hospital, produced for Shaw Media, ABC Television, Sony Television Distribution and mini-series Titanic, a Canada-UK-Hungary co-production for ITV, Shaw Media and ABC Television, and Diamonds, a Canada/UK/South Africa mini-series for CBC, ABC Television, Canal + (France) and Antena (Spain). Sienna is developing several TV series and feature films with a variety of partners in Canada and internationally.
Jessica Watson is the Manager, Acquisitions at Entertainment One (eOne). Based in the Company's Toronto office, Watson is responsible for acquiring scripted and non-scripted television product for distribution to all media outlets around the world.
Over the past 2 years Watson has been responsible for strategically increasing eOne's catalogue of third party television content. Watson joined eOne with several years of television acquisitions experience.
Most recently, she worked as an Acquisitions Specialist at Teletoon. During her 5 years at Astral Media, she acquired series and movies for both kid and adult audiences.
She has also worked in development for such organizations as Red Varden Studios and Base Camp Films.
Take 5 Productions
BEAUTY AND THE BEAST/THE TUDORS/ VIKINGS, Take 5 Productions
John Weber began his film and television career in 1995, and has produced and serviced numerous television projects throughout his career.
In 2009, Weber founded Take 5 Productions which has quickly become an industry leader in international co-production. Prior to Take 5, Weber was the CEO and controlling shareholder of Dufferin Gate Productions, a Toronto-based production service company which he successfully sold in 2007.
In addition to his services as President of Take 5, Weber is an Executive Producer of The Tudors (Showtime), The Borgias (Showtime), Camelot (Starz), World Without End (Tandem), Vikings (MGM/History), Beauty and the Beast (The CW/CBS) and Reign (The CW/CBS). Weber is also a Professional Accountant with a degree in Economics from Wilfrid Laurier University.
Katie Uhlmann is an actress and entertainment reporter. After graduating with a degree in Drama and Psychology from Queen's University, Katie has gone on to act in various independent films, television shows and commercials. She is a recipient of the Gold Duke of Edinburgh Award for Community Service, an international award she received from Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex.
Katie has a supporting role in the feature film "Kingdom Come," which is being released in 2014. She has signed on to shoot a comedic feature film entitled "Saving Prosperity," directed by Darwin Brooks (assistant director of "The Great Gatsby",) which is slated to shoot in Michigan in 2015. She is widely known for her online show "Katie Chats," where she has interviewed over 2500 professionals in the film and television industry.
THE MOVIE NETWORK
Lisa Gotlieb is a Toronto-based film and television professional. As Drama Coordinator for Bell Media's Independent Production team Lisa coordinates the original scripted development slate, productions, and feature film pre-buys for all of Bell Media's English language television properties.
Lisa sits on the Board of Directors for the PlaYR Mutlimedia Festival, is a selection committee member for the Harold Greenberg Fund's Short-to-Features Program, and regularly participates as a mentor and juror for various industry initiatives.
Prior to joining Bell Media's Independent Production team Lisa worked with Astral's Original Programming team and held production and international distribution roles at Cookie Jar Entertainment.
Vice President and General Manager
at Gusto TV
Vice President and General Manager
at Gusto TV
Mark Prasuhn is Vice President and General Manager at Gusto TV. Mark has an impressive and extensive track record of business growth and success over three decades in television broadcast and production. During his 10-year tenure as Chief Operating Officer for S-Vox/VisionTV/Zoomer Media, Prasuhn launched and managed national specialty television channels One: the Body, Mind & Spirit channel and Grace TV. He also helped steer the turnaround and sale of VisionTV and the acquisition of CHNU-TV (JoyTV) Vancouver/Victoria, and helmed programming for all four networks as Chief Content Officer from 2007 – 2011. He was also COO at social media marketing consultancy Jumpwire Media, and has also served in executive roles at Minds Eye Pictures, SaskFILM, and TVOntario.
General Manager Cooking Channel
General Manager Cooking Channel
Michael Smith is general manager of Scripps Networks Interactive's newest lifestyle media brand, Cooking Channel. He currently oversees the creation, integration, and programming and marketing of the network, which launched in May 2010 in 58 million homes, making it one of the largest new channel launches in history. Since launch audience ratings have increased 50%, distribution has grown 20%, and the channel has received multiple Emmy nominations.
Previously, Smith worked as senior vice president of marketing, creative and brand strategy for Food Network. While there, he also served as its senior vice president of marketing and creative, and in vice president roles for both on-air strategy and creative. His teams' work was recognized with several industry awards, and in 2003, Smith received a Brand Builder Award from PromaxBDA, Broadcasting & Cable and Multichannel News.
Prior to Scripps, Smith worked for Disney/ABC Cable Networks in a variety of sales, marketing and programming roles, both domestically and in Asia, and eventually rose to executive director of on-air promotion for Disney Channel. He also worked for the CBS Television Network in affiliate relations, and began his career as an account executive at Young & Rubicam in 1986.
Smith's talents and influence have been widely recognized. He's been named a NAMIC Luminary, one of SAVOY magazine's "100 Most influential Blacks in Corporate America," and one of CableFAX's "Top 75 Most Influential Minorities in Cable." He serves on the boards of Food Bank for New York and the International Radio and Television Society. He is mentor in career development programs for NAMIC, PROMAX, and the Emma Bowen Foundation.
Smith earned his MBA in 1986 from the University of California at Berkeley's Haas School of Business, and received his bachelor's degree in science, technology and society from Stanford University in 1984.
A native of Red Deer, Alberta, Canada, Smith grew up in Jamaica, West Indies before moving to the United States in 1971.
Morwyn Brebner is a playwright and screenwriter. She is the co-creator of Saving Hope, on which she is an executive producer and showrunner. The show is currently in its third season for CTV and now ION Television.
She is a co-creator of Global ABC's Rookie Blue. Other credits include King, Less Than Kind, Moose TV, The Jane Show, At the Hotel and The Eleventh Hour. She is a graduate of The National Theatre School of Canada.
For the past few years Nathan Schwartz has worked for Bell Media in various roles. He began as an intern for BravoFACT (Foundation to Assist Canadian Talent), and then moved on to become their content coordinator for just over a year.
In the role he not only maintained the website and social media outlets for the department, he also guided burgeoning filmmakers through the grant process and provided constructive feedback to help bolster their projects. He then spent a year working as a programming assistant for Bell Media's specialty channels, after which he moved back to bravoFACT resuming his role as content coordinator.
Prior to his current occupation, Nathan co-created a blog dedicated to film and video games called Lazyreviewzzz.com, where he wrote reviews and opinion pieces for hundreds of movies and video games.
As a York University graduate with an honours degree in philosophy, Nathan has fashioned himself to be a thinker and a writer. With his strong passion for film, he envisions himself to one day be a film writer. Until then, he is more than satisfied with assisting Canadian talent.
Paul de Silva is a Gemini award winning film and Television Producer/Director/Writer and Media and Arts and Culture Consultant. His career has spanned television broadcasting, independent film and television production, journalism, public education, and inter-cultural communications.
He is currently the Co-Director of the International Diaspora Film Festival based in Toronto, Canada and Executive Producer for A4 One Media Productions, a multi platform media production company focusing on inter-cultural and humanitarian issues .He was Project Director for Canada One TV, an application to the CRTC for a Diversity focused TV/Internet channel and formerly Vice President of Programming for Vision TV /One, The Body Mind and Spirit Channel. In the six years he was at Vision he was responsible for commissioning documentary, drama, and music programs both in Canada and internationally, including the Gemini nominated comedy series Lord Have Mercy! and the Music/Documentary series “Soul Music”. He was formerly Vision TV’s Director of Independent Production.
He is a former CBC Journalist and Executive Producer for Current Affairs and Drama programming .He began his professional career as a Human Rights officer with the Ontario Human Rights Commission and was a Communications officer with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) based in Nairobi, Kenya.
He is currently a PhD candidate in the York Ryerson Joint Programme in Communications and Culture and undertaking research in the area of screen based media production, and the role it plays in identity formation, citizen engagement and social cohesion in diasporic communities.
Peter Moss has worked as a writer, director and producer in theatre and television for over 30 years. In television he has worked in both private and public broadcasting and has been President of Cinar Entertainment, and an Executive Producer for SesameWorkshop ( formerly the Children’s Television Workshop). As a theatre director, his experience includes a four season residency and guest directing assignments at the Stratford Shakespeare Festival and as Artistic Director of Young People’s Theatre in Toronto for 11 seasons.
Mr. Shoan has broad experience in communications law and regulatory affairs within the public and private spheres.
Prior to his appointment to the CRTC, he served as the CBC/Radio-Canada's Director of Regulatory Affairs. In this role, he led the Corporation's participation in CRTC public hearings on various policy and regulatory matters, including the applications to renew the public broadcaster's licences for its television and radio services.
As Director of Regulatory Affairs at Astral Media Radio Inc. from 2008 to 2011, Mr. Shoan ensured that the company's radio and local television stations were compliant with the CRTC's policies and regulations. He was also responsible for the company's annual contributions to initiatives that promote emerging Canadian talent and support the development of high-quality Canadian music and spoken word.
Between 2004 and 2008, Mr. Shoan gained expertise in the interpretation of the Broadcasting Act and Telecommunications Act as a Senior Policy Analyst and Legal Counsel at the CRTC. He provided policy and legal advice on a number of matters, such as the review of the regulatory frameworks for broadcasting distribution and pay and specialty television channels. In 2007, Mr. Shoan was Senior Advisor to the Chairman.
Mr. Shoan also worked as an analyst and lawyer at Industry Canada from 2002 to 2004, including as Legal Counsel for its Telecommunications Law Group. Among other responsibilities, he provided litigation support, interpretation and prosecutions under the Radiocommunication Act, interpretation of the Telecommunications Act, and conducted legal research and drafted legal opinions. He also assisted in the development of regulatory policies for the Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy.
During his career, he has served on various committees and organizations, including the Board of Directors of FACTOR (Foundation Assisting Canadian Talent on Recordings) and the Governance Council for Pelmorex's national emergency alert system. Mr. Shoan holds a Bachelor of Laws from the University of New Brunswick and a Bachelor of Arts from McGill University, and is a member of the Law Society of Upper Canada and the Ontario Bar Association.
His term ends on July 3, 2018.
General Manager, Programming
Sally Catto is the General Manager, Programming for CBC English Television. She oversees the strategic direction and programming of original & acquired scripted and unscripted programming for the network. Prior to her return, Sally was Executive Vice-President, Cineflix Studios.
Sally has a long history at the CBC from her earliest days in 2001 as an Executive in Charge of Production, Drama to her subsequent positions including Creative Head, Drama and Executive Director, Commissioned & Scripted Programming. During her tenure she has overseen such programming as Intelligence, Republic of Doyle, Heartland, Being Erica, Murdoch Mysteries, and Mr. D.
Sally started her career as a lawyer at Stikeman Elliott and Goodmans. She has also worked as a literary agent for film & television (Westwood Creative Artists & Harrison Artist Management) and at production companies including Accent Entertainment.
She also spent a year overseas at Australian broadcaster SBS working in scripted & business affairs.
MOVIE ENTERTAINMENT's Teri Hart is Canada's multi-platform entertainment personality, taking television, radio, and online audiences from behind-the-scenes to the front of the line through her unparalleled access to the biggest names in show business. A true pop culture, TV, and film fanatic, Teri's inner entertainment maven always shines through - whether talking about Oscar®-bound critics' picks, children's animation, foreign cinema, or the top shows on television.
For over 18 years Teri has been the face of THE MOVIE NETWORK. From long-form interviews with the likes of GAME OF THRONES author and screenwriter George R. R. Martin to exclusive Canadian red-carpet access at the Cannes Film Festival - Teri covers it all. A favourite with viewers and celebrities alike, Teri has become a fixture at press junkets and TV and film premieres, connecting fans with all aspects of Hollywood and Hollywood North. Teri is also an ardent champion of emerging Canadian filmmakers and has worked with home-grown talent including Don McKellar, Sarah Polley, Paul Gross, and Jay Baruchel, to name a few.
In addition to MOVIE ENTERTAINMENT- on-air on The Movie Network and HBO Canada and online at themovienetwork.ca - Teri can be heard weekly on ENTERTAINMENT EXTRA, a weekly entertainment show on NEWSTALK 1010, as well as contributing segments regularly for Montréal radio stations CJAD and CHOM FM. Teri has appeared on the panel of CTV's talk series THE SOCIAL and can also be seen regularly on ETALK, Canada's most-watched entertainment news
Teri's interviews include the "who's who" of Hollywood - Angelina Jolie, Brad Pitt, Julia Roberts, Johnny Depp, Leonardo DiCaprio, Steven Spielberg, and Will Ferrell are just a few of the legion of her superstar subjects.
Teri's unique talents have led to her status as an in-demand personality for Canadian film and television events. She is repeatedly sought out to host film premieres, and has hosted the pre-show for the Genie Awards three times. She has also hosted the Toronto International Film Festival's Oscar Night Gala and has been named the official host for Lainey Lui's 2014 annual Smut Soirée in Toronto.
Born in Brantford, Ontario, Teri studied broadcasting at Humber College where she discovered her passion for entertainment journalism. Before joining The Movie Network, Teri held several on-air positions in radio, including stints at Toronto radio stations Q107, CFNY, and CKNX.
Producer, Writer, Actor
Producer, Writer, Actor
Vinay Virmani was born and raised in Toronto, Canada. A business graduate from York University, he then went on to study film making and theatre at the prestigious Lee Strasberg Institute of Theatre and Film in New York.
Vinay made his feature film debut as an actor/writer with the Canadian hit, "Breakaway".
Vinay's new movie, currently playing across Canada is the social comedy "Dr.Cabbie", produced by Bollywood superstar Salman Khan and co-starring Big Bang Theory's Kunal Nayyar.
Apart from his career in films, Vinay devotes a lot of his time travelling to schools talking to students and takes part in many social causes.
Sex, Fame, and Murder: the Luka Magnotta Story
Television/ Film Professional
Sex, Fame, and Murder: the Luka Magnotta Story
Wendy has worked in the television, film, and web business for over 25 years, from independent television production to senior broadcast management roles, to film festival management and creation and web design. Most recently, Wendy launched and ran a new film festival in Oakville, Ontario, Oakville Festivals of Film and Arts. The inaugural festival was a success and will expand next year.
Wendy has a Masters degree in Cinema and Media from York University, and has been published academically. Current documentary projects include Sex, Fame, and Murder: the Luka Magnotta Story for A&E networks, Canal D and Investigation Discovery, and Bees and the Buzz of Creativity. Wendy has also designed and launched websites, recent sites include: www.spiesintheshadows.com and www.oakvillechoral.com, and www.sexfameandmurder.com.
The documentary series Spies in the Shadows, based on the website, is also in the works. Aside from a substantial television credit list, Wendy was VP Programming and Acquisitions for the OUTtv television network for almost ten years, and worked in programming at TVOntario for almost nine years. She launched the diginet channel PrideVision TV in 2001.
Wendy has her own production company, and has been responsible for the creation of many award winning series and documentaries, including Chris and John to the Rescue,(airing in the US on LOGO, a Viacom network) Cover Guy (airs on Here! network in the US) Leap of Faith, Urban Fitness TV, the award winning Locker Room with Paul DeBoy (also airing on Here! in the USA), and has worked on other series for channels such as TVOntario, Discovery and History Television.
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