DOC BC presents: A Filmmakers Brunch!

The Documentary Organization of Canada, BC chapter, kicks off this spring with a special professional development panel event. DOC BC presents: A Filmmakers Brunch! A series of conversations with three of our most talented DOCmakers.

Saturday, March 23, 12-3pm

in The Startup Studio at The Post at 750, 750 Hamilton St, Vancouver, BC V6B 2R5

Come spend the early afternoon with the three local and fiercely talented directors and members of the DOC community, ahead of the HotDocs and DOXA Film Festivals. This panel series celebrates the success of our members and will provide aspiring and current filmmakers insight on documentary production, funding strategies, representation and production challenges, marketing, and festival experiences.

Panelists:

Julia Ivanova, director: Family Portrait in Black and White (Sundance/Hot Docs/IDFA)

Baljit Sangra, director: Warrior Boyz (NFB/DOXA)

Kat Jayme, director: Finding Big Country (Telus STORYHIVE/VIFF)

Moderator:

Joella Cabalu, director: It Runs in the Family (OUTtv/VQFF)

Schedule:

  • 11:30am — Doors open
  • 12:00pm — Brunch and coffee
  • 12:30pm — Panel
  • 2:30pm — Mixer

Pricing:

  • Members: FREE
  • Non-Members: $10

RSVP and Get Your Tickets Here

**Coffee and Brunch Snacks provided**


Julia Ivanova

Julia Ivanova is a Vancouver filmmaker who has been honored with “Focus On” Retrospective at Hot Docs 2019 as a “significant Canadian filmmaker”.

Julia Ivanova is the creative force behind ten feature and TV documentaries, including Family Portrait In Black And White that played Sundance, IDFA and was named Best Canadian Feature at Hot Docs 2011. Her credits on Family Portrait In Black And White include directing, photography, writing, shooting, and editing. The film was produced by Boris Ivanov, who was the producer of most of her films.

Ivanova’s other credits include such films as Limit is the Sky, produced by NFB, that won Colin Low Best Canadian Feature Award at DOXA 2017; Love Translated andFatherhood Dreams.  She just completed the film My Dads, My Moms and Me through Telus Storyhive and NSI initiative that would get its world premier at Hot Docs. Julia has been working on a film about the Trans Mountain Pipeline since 2014. Her films played Sundance, Hot Docs, IDFA, Hamptons, Chicago, LA, VIFF, Seattle, DOXA, Cleveland and many other international film festivals.

Baljit Sangra 

Baljit Sangra is a Vancouver based filmmaker who has been working in documentary and factual entertainment with an emphasis
in exploring social and cross cultural issues through film. She just finished a feature documentary ‘Because we are Girls’ with the NFB, a social issues documentary that explores the impact of sexual violence on a family.  Other documentaries she has directed include:

Warrior Boyz’ in association with NFB and Canwest that examines the long running gang scene unique to the Indo-Canadian enclave in the Lower Mainland (broadcast on Global TV/Knowledge Network/KPS television/PBS). It was nominated for three Leo Awards. ‘Many Rivers Home’, a personal story that focuses on seniors living in assisted care and  the end of life (co-produced with Omni TV)Awarded best documentary Chicago South Asian film festival. (Played in festivals in Chicago, New Haven, South Africa, Mumbai, Toronto, Seattle) ‘Hockey United ‘ which follows two amateur South Asian hockey players with their eyes on the NHL (for Omni TV broadcast date TBA). She also produced/directed an A&E series ‘VIVA!’ for CityTV and Channel M/ Omni TV for several seasons.

Baljit runs her own production company Viva Mantra Films and is always looking to meeting new people and collaborators for projects. Baljit is the Chair of DOC BC and has been a programmer for the Vancouver Asian Film Festival. She has also been a juror for many local festivals.

 

Kathleen Jayme

Kathleen Jayme is an award-winning Canadian filmmaker based in Vancouver, BC, who is passionate about telling meaningful and personal stories. Her latest project “Finding Big Country” has been a resounding success and has energized sports fans both in Vancouver and across North America. It was the winner of the Vancouver International Film Festivals (VIFF) prestigious Audience Choice Award as well as the Must see BC award as voted by the VIFF audience.

She is a graduate of the University of British Columbia’s Film Production Program and also worked at the National Film Board of Canada where she coordinated and oversaw over thirty documentaries, animations, and digital projects through all stages of production. She is a fellow of the 2016 Inspirit Foundation’s Story Money Impact program, the 2017 Hot Docs Documentary Channel Doc Accelerator program, and the 2017 Telus STORYHIVE Banff World Media Festival program.

 

Joella Cabalu
Joella Cabalu is an award-winning Filipino-Canadian Vancouver-based documentary filmmaker. Her first credit as a producer and director was for her own personal family documentary It Runs in the Family (2015), which won Audience Choice Awards at the Seattle Asian American Film Festival and Vancouver Queer Film Festival and an honourable mention for the Loni Ding Award for Social Justice Documentary at CAAMFest. Since then, she has developed a track record as a creative and collaborative producer working with emerging women directors on compelling short documentaries, including the uplifting environmental film FIXED! (2016) and Do I Have Boobs Now? (2017) a fascinating portrait of a trans activist which screened in festivals worldwide, including Slamdance, BFI Flare, and OUTFest LA. She recently produced a CBC Docs short Biker Bob’s Posthumous Adventure (2019), about a community of strangers coming together after discovering a message in a bottle containing human ashes.

Understanding Funding Sources and Tax Credits in BC

Understanding Funding Sources and Tax Credits for Film + TV Production in BC

When? Thursday, February 19th at 6:30 PM
Where? Pull Focus Film School (306 Abbott Street)
Tickets DOC BC Member: Free; Non-member: $15; Student: $10
Click here to reserve your seats!

Are you a filmmaker in need of a better understanding on how to use tax incentives in the budgeting of your next project? Are you looking for financing sources for your next project? Join DOC BC on Thursday, February 19th as we present a workshop that will help you understand some of the financial aspects of tax credits and other incentives available for documentary and new media production in BC.

With special guests:

Betsy Carson, Producer

Betsy is an award-winning  producer/ EP/ director with over 25 years experience in documentary film and television. Recently released films include Occupy Love (executive producer)- director  Velcrow Ripper’s film on the Occupy movement, Waking the Green Tiger  (producer) –  dir: Gary Marcuse- about the rise of an environmental movement in China;  Surviving Progress, (exec  producer)  – dir: Mathieu Roy and Harold Crooks-  based on Ronald Wright’s book A Short History of Progress; War in the Mind –  (producer) –  dir: Judy Jackson-  about post traumatic stress in the military and military suicide. Over the last four years she has also executive produced with Mark Achbar (The Corporation) three theatrical feature documentaries:  Fierce Light (dir: Velcrow Ripper) , Pax Americana (dir: Denis Delestrac) and Waterlife (dir: Kevin McMahon) and developed six additional documentary projects.

Current projects include Faultlines, a theatrical documentary by Nettie Wild and Uninterrupted, a public art project set to launch in 2017.  She has produced the feature docs of Nettie Wild  (FIX: The Story of an Addicted CityA Place Called Chiapas, Blockade, Bevel Up), and has also worked with filmmakers Gary Marcuse (The Mind of a ChildNuclear Dynamite, Arktika) and Hugh Brody (The Meaning of Life, Time Immemorial). The films she has collaborated on have won over 40 national and international awards and honours including  Genie and Gemini awards,  American Film Institute, Berlin, Hot Docs, IDA, Prism, Grantham  and other humanities and environmental awards.

Robert Wong
Vice President + Acting Film Commissioner, Creative BC

After working for several years for a chartered accounting firm in Vancouver, Robert joined BC Film + Media (now Creative BC) where he is currently the Vice President and Acting Film Commissioner. Robert joined the staff just prior to the launch of the film and television tax credit program in 1998, and has since played an integral role in the evolution of British Columbia’s film and television tax policy, including the recent enhancements to the tax credit program.

He is responsible for all administrative aspects of Film Incentive BC (FIBC), the Production Services Tax Credit (PSTC), and development funding programs.  As Acting Film Commissioner, he is tasked with marketing British Columbia as a destination of choice for projects and companies looking for a world class production centre.

Sherrill SirrsCMA (Certified Management Accountant)Finding a niche market and possessing a love for the entertainment industry, Sherrill began working with independent film and television producers in 1997.  Her practice is made up of primarily film-related clients and with dozens of film credits to her name, you can pretty much ask her anything about film financing and production accounting.

Meet the Broadcasters is back!

MEET THE BROADCASTERS
When: 
Monday, January 19th, 2015 at 6:30 PM
Where:  Pull Focus Film School (306 Abbott St, Vancouver)
Reserve your tickets here!

 DOC BC Meet the Broadcasters workshop is back! Representatives from Bell MediaSuper Channel, Knowledge Network and the NFB will be present to discuss the state of the industry, what kind of content they are looking for, how much they will pay and their process for proposals, among other things. This will be great opportunity for participants to understand executives’ programming priorities and broadcast services. Bring your questions and be prepared to engage in an active discussion with peers and other industry professionals!

With special guests:

 Murray Battle, Director of Original Content and Brand at British Columbia Knowledge Network television.
Murray Battle is the Director of Original Content and Brand at British Columbia’s Knowledge Network. Recent documentary commissions include the award winning series, Emergency Room: Life and Death at Vancouver General Hospital, Oil Sands Karaoke, Just Eat It, Backward Class, Father Figures, Do You Really Want to Know? and Coast Modern. In a previous life, he was a filmmaker for over 30 years.

Michelle McMahon, Development Manager Independent Production, B.C. and the Territories at Bell Media

Michele McMahon is Development Manager Independent Production for B.C. and the Territories.  In this role, Michele is the point of contact for the local production community, acts as the creative executive on projects in development and production, and initiate community engagement and outreach initiatives. Michele is currently one of the Production Executives for Bell Media on 19-2 (BRAVO) and MOTIVE (CTV).Prior to joining Bell Media, Michele McMahon spent 10 years with Omnifilm Entertainment, the last five as Director of Drama Development. There, she developed the drama PRIMEVAL: NEW WORLD (Space) and ARCTIC AIR (CBC).

In her diverse 20-year career as a journalist, writer, and TV producer, McMahon has edited a weekly paper, freelanced for newspapers and magazines, and written and story edited several screenplays. She also acted as the Chair of the Amnesty International Film Festival (Vancouver).  Michele earned degrees in Political Science (Carleton University), Journalism (Algonguin College) and Writing for Film and Television (Vancouver Film School) and is slowly working towards her Masters’ Degree at Simon Fraser University.

Maureen Levitt, Creative Development Executive at Super Channel.

Maureen Levitt joined Super Channel, Canada’s only national English Pay TV service, at its inception in 2007. As Creative Development Executive for Western Canada and the Territories she works with the independent production community in the development and production of their feature length films (Lawrence & Holloman, Sitting on the Edge of Marlene, STAY) and documentaries intended for theatrical release (Occupy Love, Unclaimed, SOL, The Exhibition).   Maureen is a cofounder of Vision TV. Between 1994 and 2005 she was Manager and Commissioning Editor of its Western Region office focusing on documentaries (The Corporation, Sacred Sacred) and Executive Producer of various in-house series. Previous to that she was First Assistant Editor on the Canadian film classic, The Grey Fox, and on the quintessential Canadian series The Beachcombers and The Canadian Establishment. Maureen has a Masters in Communications from Simon Fraser University.

Shirley Vercruysse, Executive Producer of the National Film Board of Canada, Pacific & Yukon Studio.Shirley Vercruysse is the Executive Producer of the National Film Board of Canada, Pacific & Yukon Studio, based in Vancouver BC. Prior to joining the NFB in February 2014, she was independent film and television producer based in Calgary Alberta. Credits include; Fubar II, the first Canadian film to open the high profile “Midnight Madness” section of the Toronto International Film Festival; Radiant City, winner of the Genie Award for Best Theatrical Documentary & waydowntown winner of the prestigious Toronto City Award for Best Canadian film at Toronto International Film Festival. Other feature credits incldue The Future Is Now!; Angels Crest; Comeback Season; A Problem with Fear. Television credits include Gavin Crawford’s Wild West; My Rona Home, Season’s I and II and The Secret of the Nutcracker.


Space is limited so remember to reserve your seats here. 
We look forward to seeing you there! 

 

 

April 4th: The Art of Crowdfunding Workshop

 

Presented by DOC BC with support from Creative BC

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When: April 4th – 10:00am – 4:00pm
Where: Pull Focus Film School (306 Abbott St)
Tickets: Buy Tickets Here
Discount for DOC BC Members

THE ART OF CROWDFUNDING is all day workshop for filmmakers, musicians, artists, activists, entrepreneurs, inventors, designers, lovers, and anyone who wants to make their idea, dream, or vision a reality throughcrowdfunding.

Taught by filmmaker & media activist IAN MACKENZIE (Occupy Love, Sacred Economics), he demystifies the world of crowdfunding and the specific storytelling strategies that will help you tap into the revolution.

Ian has offered these popular workshops in Vancouver, Victoria, San Francisco, Portland, Sacramento, and Los Angeles.  This new evening builds upon Ian’s previous strategy-based workshop, focusing exclusively on crafting the narrative for your campaign and developing your own campaign.

After exploring numerous real-world examples (from Be Brave to Milton’s Secret), by the end of the night, you will have the concrete structure of your campaign and the confidence to launch.  Woven between the strategy is Ian’s signature insight and heart – with the promise to leave you inspired to create a future that works for all life.

This workshop is limited to 50 participants.  Tea/Coffee/Snacks are included.

BONUS: Every participant will get a video download of Ian’s previous 2 hour workshop “Crowdfunding 101” which covers specific crowdfunding strategy, tips and how to manage your campaign.

For more information see Facebook or EventBrite

 

 

New Workshop Announced. Distribution Workshop: March 7, 2014

Produced with DOC BC
WIFTV and CREATIVE BC PRESENT:

a Distribution Workshop with Avi Federgreen

Do you have a film that’s finished and/or in development? Are you looking for a distributor to help you sell your film domestically or internationally.  Have you made a film that you would like to try and self distribute. Well in three hours you’re going to learn all there is to know about distributing your film from Indie Producer/Distributor Avi Federgreen.

Date: Friday March 7th
Time: 9:30 – 12:30
Location: VIFF’s Vancity Theatre, 1181 Seymour St., Vancouver

Topics covered include:
– Different types of distribution and the realities of distribution
– What’s happening now in the world of distribution
– Knowing Your Audience, How Do You Reach Them
– All of the necessary tools you need for your film (press kit, synopsis, stills, epk, poster, trailer etc)
– Contracts, E&O and other paperwork requirements
– Deliverables
– Festival strategies
– P&A – Ways to promote your film – The old way and the new way
– Social Media
– The Ratings Game
– Theatrical Distribution
– VOD
– ITunes and other internet options
– DVD/Blu-ray
– TV (Cable, Pay, Free)
– Educational, Alternative and International Distribution
– Monitizing Your Film

Cost: $30 WIFTV and DOC BC Members/ $50 non-members

Go HERE to register

Avi Federgreen’s nearly 20 years of experience in the Canadian film industry feature many highlights, from music videos to TV series to full-length feature films.

Federgreen’s current releases include Empire of Dirt directed by Peter Stebbingss, Random Acts of Romance directed by Katrin Bowen, the first ever Canadian fully financed 3D feature Dead Before Dawn directed by April Mullen and the documentary 30 Ghosts directed by Sean Cisterna.

Federgreen’s other producing credits include Still Mine, Score: A Hockey MusicalMoon Point, I’m YoursHUNGRY HILLS, One Week, High Life, Leslie, My Name Is Evil, and the documentary As Slow as Possible.

In November 2011, Federgreen opened his own film distribution company INDIECAN ENTERTAINMENT.  The company services not just up-and-coming Canadian filmmakers, but also those indies making films in a lower budget bracket who have otherwise virtually no chance to shine in a market of big studios, distributors and exhibitors.

January 29th Upcoming Workshop: MOVIES AND MONEY PT II: INCORPORATION FOR DUMMIES

DOC BC is delighted to be bringing you our first workshop of 2014:

MOVIES AND MONEY PT II: INCORPORATION FOR DUMMIES 

download

A co-presentation with Cineworks

RSVP to the event HERE

Most film school educations focus heavily on the creative and technical sides of the process while ignoring the equally vital financial tools that one needs to understand in order to make sure things in the office run as smoothly as things on set.  As you become more serious about your filmmaking career, having a solid handle on your (company’s) financials becomes increasingly  important and complicated.  Topics we’ll cover include:

  • the pros and cons of incorporation
  • tax considerations (collecting GST)
  • accounting and bookkeeping best practices/finding an accountant
  • making sure your crew is filling out the proper paperwork/tax credits
  • deductions for self-employed individuals
  • budgeting basics
  • and more…
Instructor Sherrill Sirrs CMA:

Finding a niche market and possessing a love for the entertainment industry, Sherrill began working with independent film and television producers in 1997. Her practice is made up of primarily film-related clients and with dozens of film credits to her name, you  can pretty much ask her anything about film financing and production accounting.

Date: Wednesday, January 29th
Location: Cineworks 1131 Howe St
Time: 6:30 – 9:00pm
Tickets: DOC Members: FREE, Cineworks Members: $15.75 Non-Members: $21.00
(all prices include GST)

DOC BC Workshop: Animation & Documentaries: The Collaborative Process


Date & Time:
 Tuesday, March 12th from 7pm to 9:30

Location: VIVO Media Arts
1965 Main St
Vancouver, BC V5T 3C1

TICKETS:

DOC MEMBERS: Free Admission NON-Members $10, Students $5 
http://animationanddocs.eventbrite.com/

DOC BC is organizing a workshop on how animation and documentaries work together in the collaborative and creative process. At this event, a panel of 3 speakers will engage in a discussion touching on topics such as:

– where do documentary filmmakers go to find an animator?
– defining different types of animation and basic terms
– what to expect working with an animator
– examples of integrating animation (including credits and graphics) into documentaries

The panel of 3 presenters are all accomplished artists with plenty of animation experiences to share:

Ann Marie Fleming is an award-winning artist, writer and independent Canadian filmmaker who works in a variety of different genres (animation, experimental, documentary and dramatic).  Her work often deals with themes of family, history and memory.

David DeCoursey: an accomplished digital artist, with skills in both visual effects and motion graphics. Over the past several years, he has worked professionally in the industry as a digital compositor on shows ranging from the SyFy Network’s EUREKA and SANCTUARY to V: THE SERIES, airing on NBC. He has also taught numerous courses in 2D animation at the non-profit film school, Pull Focus Films.

Martin Rose is an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Design and Dynamic Media at Emily Carr University of Art & Design where he teaches animation. In addition, Martin is an independent animator and recently worked part-time as a producer at the National Film Board, Pacific & Yukon Centre.

Join us on next week on March 12th for a fun and interactive discussion at VIVO Media Arts. We look forward to seeing you there!

Featured Event! Meet the Doc Doctor – Fernanda Rossi!

The Doc Doctor – Fernanda Rossi

Workshop: Saturday February 2nd, 2013

Time: doors at 8:30 am workshop from 9am – 6pm

Location: Emily Carr University of Art + Design

Cost: $50 for DOC members
$100 for Non-members.
Bring a friend and get $25 off each non member admission.

Buy tickets here: http://fernandarossidocbc.eventbrite.com

DOC BC has asked internationally renowned author, speaker and story consultant Fernanda Rossi to host a full day workshop for filmmakers to help make their fundraising film trailer all that it can be. Your trailer should be the ultimate pitch, the one thing that sells funders on the potential of your project. A trailer can make or break your film. So stop guessing what works and what doesn’t work – and why – in this one-day, hands-on workshop for producers, directors, writers and editors.  Learn the foundational story structures for fundraising trailers, and discover some of the common mistakes filmmakers make when crafting their log lines, synopses, and trailers. The morning session will focus on log lines and synopses and in the afternoon, Ms Rossi will show work applied to actual trailers, with before and after examples; and a sampling of successful fundraising trailers.

About Fernanda Rossi:
Internationally renowned speaker and story consultant Fernanda Rossi has doctored more than 300 fiction scripts, fundraising samples and documentaries, including two nominated for the Academy Award® and many that went on to receive funds from ITVS in the U.S. and NFB in Canada. She has given her workshops and lectures in more than 12 countries for more than 40 film organizations and at all major world markets and conferences, including Hot Docs in Canada, SilverDOCS in the United States, Sunny Side of the Doc in France and Sheffield Doc/Fest in the UK. In addition, she’s a much sought-after trainer for special programs and grant evaluator for foundations. Her columns and articles have been published in trade publications, such as The Independent in the United States and DOX in Europe. She is  the author of the book that, according to industry professionals is the bible on demo production now in its second edition: Trailer Mechanics: How to Make Your Documentary Fundraising Demo. www.documentarydoctor.com

 

DOC BC & CINEWORKS PRESENT: “CREATIVITY IN MODERN DOCUMENTARIES” WITH DOXA’S GUEST FILMMAKERS

DOC BC and CINEWORKS present “Creativity in Modern Documentaries” with DOXA guest filmmakers

Cineworks
Sunday MAY 6th at 3:00pm
Suite 300, 1131 Howe Street, Vancouver
entrance is in the back lane

$10 non-members – $5 students with ID – DOC BC and CINEWORKS members free

 


Luca Ragazzi (Italy) – co-director of “Italy: Love It, or Leave It”
is a playful film on a serious subject (matter). The film effortlessly combines many forms of storytelling – documentary, animation, and narrative. Since September 2011, the trailer of the film has been viewed by 126 thousand people on youtube. It has won awards at Thessaloniki, Milan, Honolulu, Toulouse and has already played 35 film festivals all over the world.

“After their award winning, groundbreaking documentary ‘Suddenly, Last Winter’, Luca and Gustav are back. This time they have to decide: should they stay in Italy, or leave it, like so many of their friends have done already. Looking at some defining Italian icons, they go on a emotional trip on a old Fiat 500 through Italy, to look behind the cliches and to discover, what’s left of the famous Italian way of life, confronting a glorious past, a shaky present and an uncertain future.” italyloveitorleave.it



David Shields (USA) – author
of a number non-fiction and fiction books, including “Reality Hunger: A Manifesto” (2010) where he argues for the necessity of “reality-based art” and the obsolescence of traditional narrative. Much of Shields’s work enacts a critique of traditional categories within art and culture, such as the boundary between fiction and nonfiction; for instance, in Reality Hunger,  he argues for the abandonment of the traditional novelistic form because of its inadequacy in dealing with what he views as an increasingly fragmentary culture. David Shields is one of Guest Curators at DOXA 2012. davidshields.com


Benjamin Kahlmeyer (Germany) – director “Meanwhile in Mamelodi”, the film that cultivates the most unique and prized of human traits – the ability to hope. The film is set against the 2010 World Cup and shows the lives of an ordinary family in Pretoria who must hustle to get by. Though they are geographically close to the World Cup playoffs, they may as well be on another planet. Watch the trailer here.

“This beautifully crafted portrait of a place and a family features stunning cinematography and a lively score, as the Mtswenis’s day-to-day struggles and victories echo the promise of a new South Africa.”

“A gorgeously shot film, on a 5D DSLR, it’s filled with humanity in some terrible conditions, but living at its best.” – The Mind Reels

Benjamin Kahlmeyer is a first-time feature documentary director, who was born in 1982, first studied philosophy and literature, then went on to work at a number of production houses as a sound-mixer, production assistant and co-director, and later finished the Film Academy. Meanwhile in Mamelodi premiered at DOK Leipzig, was praised by audience both at San-Francisco International Film Festival and at HotDocs. meanwhile-in-mamelodi.com

Join us for this wonderful opportunity to talk about modern means of storytelling!

DOC BC PRESENTS: New Faces In Town

DOC BC is proud to present a panel discussion with three emerging Vancouver-based filmmakers who have met with success in the past year. Join us for an evening with Jeff Topham (Liberia 77), Joel Heath (People of a Feather) and Stephen Gillis (This Wrestling Life), moderated by Nimisha Mukerji (65_RedRoses).

Each filmmaker will tell the story of his film’s journey from idea to screen to success story, and answer your questions about how he overcame the production, financing and marketing hurdles documentarians face today. Please join us!


7:00pm, Thursday, April 12th 2012
VIVO Media Arts Centre
1965 Main Street, Vancouver

non-members $10 – students $5 – members free


Vancouver based writer, photographer and documentary filmmaker Jeff Topham has fought bugs in the Amazon, ridden camels in Timbuktu, talked African politics with George Clooney, fished with David Suzuki, and tailed William Shatner around a Star Trek convention.  He recently directed his first feature length documentary for the Knowledge Network – the award-winning Liberia ’77.  Other TV credits he’s proud of include Eat St. for the Food Channel; the CTV Olympics documentary series The Difference MakersCarbon Hunters – a documentary for CBC/BBC on carbon offsetting, and the award-winning CBC teen activism series Make Some Noise.  A frequent contributor to Westworld magazine, he once spent six months producing TV news in Accra, Ghana with Journalists for Human Rights.  Jeff also enjoys surfing, guitars, cheeseburgers, wine gums, and the work of actresses Léa Seydoux and Jessica Chastain.


Born in St. John’s, Newfoundland, Joel Heath has long nurtured passion for both arts and science. A leading Canadian ecologist, Joel worked in Sanikiluaq, Nunavut studying effects of climate change on Arctic sea ice ecology. For his Ph.D. Joel worked with Inuit, developing time lapse monitoring technology and an under-water camera system to capture the world’s first images of eiders diving below the sea ice. This led to Joel’s involvement in BBC’s Planet Earth: Ice Worlds and Frozen Planet. Joel has been leading one of Canada’s largest International Polar Year outreach projects. His research was recently published as the cover story in Proceedings of the Royal Society.

During his time in the Arctic Joel listened to the Inuit tell stories of a troubled future due to neighbouring hydroelectric dams. To help share these stories Joel collaborated with the community of Sanikiluaq to found Sanikiluaq Running Pictures and began a five-year process to create his first feature documentary, People of a Feather.


Stephen Gillis is an independent writer/director and producer based out of Vancouver, BC. A former theatre actor turned assistant director, after a stint on Allan Moyle’s Canadian cult film New Waterford Girl, Stephen moved west to Vancouver from Nova Scotia at age twenty to continue a career as a filmmaker. A hands-on learner, Gillis taught himself the craft while working as a projectionist at 5th Avenue Cinemas in Vancouver.

Stephen would go on to develop his sleek and sharp directing style over the next decade with short films, music videos, live concerts, and commercials. He has worked with some of the top musicians in the industry including Grammy award winners Wilco and GZA from the Wu-Tang Clan, Juno Award winners Dan Mangan and Sam Roberts, and most recently directing music videos for Vancouver based up and coming hip-hop artists, Friends With The Help and Corvid.

His debut feature length documentary This Wrestling Life (Make Believe Media), began production in July ’08. An observational style documentary that follows the stories of three aspiring professional wrestlers and one veteran as they each chase their dreams over the course of a year and a half. Included as a part of Super Channel’s GEM Collection, This Wrestling Life debuted nationally in Canada in August 2010, and was released via iTunes in the United States in summer 2011.


Nimisha Mukerji is a Gemini nominated producer/director based out of Vancouver, British Columbia. Her debut feature was the critically acclaimed documentary 65_RedRoses (produced by Force Four Entertainment), which was officially selected as one of the first acquisitions for Oprah Winfrey’s Documentary Club 2011. It will have its American broadcast premiere on OWN this year. 65_RedRoses is currently being distributed by PBS International Worldwide, and won the 2010 Banff World Television Award for Best Canadian Program, following its broadcast premiere on CBC’s The Passionate Eye. For her work on the film Nimisha was awarded the 2010 Don Haig Award for Emerging Filmmakers at the Hot Docs International Film Festival, the 2010 Mendocino Award for Emerging Filmmakers and the 2009 Artist Merit Award from Women in Film Vancouver. Nimisha also received a nomination for Best Direction in Documentary Program at the 2010 Gemini Awards.

Nimisha’s is currently producing/directing The Coconut (recipient of the 2009 Omni Cultural Diversity Award and Super Channel Feature Documentary Award), which is in development, and Blood Relative.