Tag Archives: Banff World Media Festival

Banff 2018: Anne with an E’s Moira Walley-Beckett and New Metric Media among Rockie Gala Award winners

Anne with an E showrunner Moira Walley-Beckett, Letterkenny and Bad Blood production company New Metric Media, and veteran producer Sheila Hockin were among the Canadians feted during the Rockie Awards gala on Tuesday night at the Banff World Media Festival.

Hosted by Tony Award-winning actress and singer Kristin Chenoweth—who began the show by munching ketchup potato chips and Timbits and closed with a stirring rendition of “The Prayer”—the evening also saluted Canadians who’ve made good in Hollywood. Jeremy Podeswa captured the Award of Excellence for his body of work as a director of such programs as Game of Thrones, Queer as Folk, The Tudors and The Pacific. David Shore was on hand to accept The Hollywood Reporter Impact Award for his hit medical drama The Good Doctor.

“Support is at the heart of innovation,” Mark Montefiore, New Metric Media’s president and executive producer of Letterkenny, Bad Blood and What Would Sal Do?, said upon receiving the Innovative Producer Award. “One can dream big all day long, but without the support of countless people, those ideas would simply remain as big dreams and not realities.”

Hockin was given the Canadian Award of Distinction for producing such shows as Vikings, The Handmaid’s Tale, Penny Dreadful, The Borgias, The Tudors, Canada’s Next Top Model and Queer as Folk.

Walley-Beckett accepted the Showrunner of the Year Award for her work on Anne with an E, set to return for Season 2 on Netflix next month and CBC in September.

“[Showrunning] is like conducting a full orchestra to play a symphony that you composed,” she said on-stage. “At the end of every season, I celebrate that I’ve lived to tell the tale. I love my work. Sleep is overrated. So is sanity.”

Here is the complete list of winners:

AWARD OF EXCELLENCE
Jeremy Podeswa

INNOVATIVE PRODUCER AWARD
New Metric Media

THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER IMPACT AWARD
The Good Doctor

A&E INCLUSION AWARD
Elizabeth Vargas

CANADIAN AWARD OF DISTINCTION
Sheila Hockin

SHOWRUNNER OF THE YEAR
Moira Walley-Beckett

PROGRAM OF THE YEAR
This Is Us

SIR PETER USTINOV COMEDY AWARD
Sean Hayes

COMPANY OF DISTINCTION
NBCUniversal

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2018 Rockies Program Competition winners announced

From a media release:

The Banff World Media Festival (BANFF) is proud to announce the winners of the 2018 Rockie Awards Program Competition and the $25,000 Rogers Prize for Excellence in Canadian Content.

Canadian actor/comedian, Andrew Phung (Kim’s Convenience), hosted the Rockie Awards Program Competition at the Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel. Top international media executives gathered to recognize and celebrate excellence in television and digital media content from around the world. One of the largest competitions of its kind, the Rockie Awards Program Competition presented awards in twenty-five (25) categories spanning Documentary & Factual, Arts & Entertainment, Children & Youth, Scripted, and Francophone Program of the Year.

Countries taking home top Rockies honours include:

– USA: 11 awards
– Canada: 6 awards
– UK: 5 awards
– France: 3 awards
– Japan & Singapore: each take 1 award

Program Competition winners include:

Television Miniseries
Big Little Lies
HBO / David E. Kelly Productions / Pacific Standard / Blossom Films
USA

Drama Series: English Language
Peaky Blinders
BBC / Caryn Manabach Productions / Tiger Aspect Productions / BBC Two
UK

Comedy Series: English Language
black-ish
Disney|ABC / ABC Studios
USA

Comedy Series: Non-English Language
Freefall/Lâcher prise
Encore Télévision – Distribution Inc
Canada

Drama Series: Non-English Language
Hokuto: The Conversion of a Killer
WOWOW Inc / Toei Movie Studios
Japan

Preschool Program
Sesame Street
Sesame Workshop / HBO
USA

Children & Youth Non-Fiction Series
Giver
Sinking Ship Entertainment
Canada

Reality Program
Undercover High
A&E / Lucky 8 TV / Learning Tree Productions
USA

Interactive Content
Bury me, my Love / Enterre-moi, mon Amour
ARTE France / The Pixel Hunt / Figs
France

Crime & Investigative Program
Storyville – Silk Road: Drugs, Death and the Dark Web
Raw TV / Vice / BBC Four
UK

History & Biography Program
Residente
Story House Entertainment
USA

Melodrama
The Good Doctor
Sony Pictures Television
USA

Sci-Fi, Fantasy & Action Series
Travelers
Peacock Alley Entertainment / Corus Entertainment
Canada

Rogers Prize for Excellence in Canadian Content
Winner: Travelers (Peacock Alley Entertainment)

The Rogers Prize is awarded to the highest-scoring Canadian program or property in the Rockies Program Competition across two rounds of independent jury review.

Rockies Program Competition Grand Jury Prize
The Grand Jury Prize recognizes the “best in show” from all Program Competition winning entries. The winner will be unveiled Tuesday, June 12 at the Rockie Awards Gala, hosted by Emmy- and Tony Award-winning actress and singer Kristin Chenoweth.

The 2018 finalists are:

– Big Little Lies
– Dear Basketball
– Peaky Blinders
– Sesame Street
– The Child in Time

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Banff 2018: Catherine Reitman recalls “fantasizing about death” before creating Workin’ Moms

Workin’ Moms doesn’t shy away from showing the flaws of being a mother. Part of the show’s charm and popularity is because of Catherine Reitman’s decision to show the challenges of being a working mother in 2018. And while there are plenty of laughs to go with those relatable moments via Kate (Reitman), Anne (Dani Kind), Frankie (Juno Rinaldi) and Alicia (Kat Barrell), the creation of Workin’ Moms came at a dark time in her life.

“I gave birth a couple of years ago and went back to work too quickly,” Reitman, the series’ showrunner, director, writer and executive producer says. “I had some pretty lethal post-partum depression and was actually fantasizing about death and it kept making me laugh. It wasn’t this dark, scary thing. It was this release. It made me happy, it made me hopeful. If the world would go away and these responsibilities would go away, life would be so much easier.”

Reitman spoke alongside Kim’s Convenience boss Ins Choi at the Banff World Media Festival on Tuesday morning during the CBC’s Breakfast of Showrunner Champions event. The packed room laughed nervously as Reitman recalled how her own mommy group stared at her while she related those feelings and realized the content would make for a television show. She couldn’t be the only one feeling the way she did, she reasoned and her husband Philip Sternberg—he’s an executive producer, director and plays Kate’s husband Nathan on the show—urged her to write it.

Tired of auditioning for roles for women that didn’t look or sound like her, she penned the scripts and created a sizzle reel. Once Sally Catto, general manager of programming at CBC Television, saw the reel she greenlit the series.

“Thank god for Sally,” Reitman says. “I say that every day because I get to sit here in front of all of you and watch a clip and remain floored that I was fantasizing about death and now people are watching [Workin’ Moms] and hopefully connecting with it.

Workin’ Moms returns to CBC in winter 2019.

Image courtesy of CBC.

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Banff World Media Festival announces Netflix title partnership for Diversity Of Voices Initiative

From a media release:

The Banff World Media Festival (BANFF) is proud to announce that Netflix has formalized a five-year commitment as Title Partner of the BANFF Diversity of Voices Initiative, a training and development program for underrepresented emerging and mid-career creative producers of commercial Television and/or Digital Media content, with a specific focus on Indigenous, Francophone and women industry professionals.

The partnership was announced today as part of the inaugural Diversity of Voices Initiative currently underway at the 2018 Banff World Media Festival (June 10-13, 2018). The program investment is part of Netflix’s commitment to support market development opportunities for Francophone and other Canadian screen-based creator groups.

The Diversity of Voices Initiative was launched with the support of Netflix as well as the Canada Media Fund – Fonds des médias du Canada (CMF/FMC), the Société de développement des entreprises culturelles (SODEC), and Canada’s Indigenous Screen Office.  It brings up to 100 emerging and established producer/creators to the festival each year.

Participants of the program receive full registration to the festival, a curated professional development curriculum plus access to networking opportunities with senior creative and executive leaders.  In addition, a sub-group of twenty-five (25) of the program applicants take part in the Diversity of Voices Pitch Program where they receive personalized advice from industry mentors and take pitch meetings with international buyers at BANFF in addition to receiving a stipend to defray travel costs.

BANFF serves as a crucial lifeline for many in the Canadian content industry offering world-class education, networking and business development opportunities. The festival provides a platform for the evolving media industry to collaborate and advance its creative and business objectives, while serving as the leading destination for the genesis of new projects, and one of the most effective marketplaces for co-production and co-venture partners.

About the Banff World Media Festival
The Banff World Media Festival is one of the world’s largest and most important gatherings of entertainment industry executives and creators, dedicated to content development, production, broadcast and distribution within TV and digital media. BANFF provides a platform for the evolving media industry to develop its creative and business objectives. It is an unparalleled marketplace for over 1500 international decision-makers to connect with new partners, learn from industry leaders and execute new business deals. The 39th annual BANFF World Media Festival will take place June 10-13, 2018 at the Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel in Banff, Canada.

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Banff World Media Festival announces Rockie Awards gala host and awards recipients

From a media release:

The 39th annual Banff World Media Festival (BANFF) is proud to announce Emmy and Tony Award winner Kristin Chenoweth* (Trial & Error, Hairspray Live!) will host this year’s Rockie Awards Gala Ceremony featuring a star-studded line-up of award recipients. The night of celebration will take place on Tuesday June 12th at 7:00 p.m. at the Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel in Alberta, Canada.Awards to be bestowed include:

Awards to be bestowed include:

2018 COMPANY OF DISTINCTION AWARD: NBCUniversal
NBCUniversal is one of the world’s leading media and entertainment companies in the development, production, and marketing of entertainment, news, and information to a global audience.

The Company of Distinction Award recognizes a company demonstrating significant leadership in the world of screen-based entertainment. Past Honorees include: Disney | ABC, HBO, A&E, Lionsgate and CBS.

AWARD OF EXCELLENCE: Jeremy Podeswa (Here and Now, Game of Thrones, Six Feet Under)
A three-time Primetime Emmy nominee for Best Direction (Game of Thrones, Boardwalk Empire, The Pacific) and with over 40 award nominations and wins since 1985, Jeremy Podeswa is one of the hottest directors in the golden age of TV. His body of episodic TV work includes directing ground-breaking cable television series and mini-series for HBO, Showtime, STARZ, AMC, F/X, and TNT and award-winning films including Fugitive Pieces (opening night, TIFF), The Five Senses (Directors Fortnight, Cannes Film Festival) and Eclipse (Berlin and Sundance Festivals).  

The Award of Excellence acknowledges exceptional achievement through a body of work over an extended period of time.  Past Honorees include:  Kenny Ortega, Diane English, Norman Jewison, David E. Kelly.

A+E INCLUSION AWARD:  Elizabeth Vargas (ABC News, A&E Investigates)
Elizabeth Vargas is an Emmy Award-winning journalist, and the first U.S. network evening news anchor of Puerto Rican and Irish-American Heritage. She is a brave storyteller and a trusted expert at bringing audiences closer to the heart of stories that have never been told in order to reveal genuine moments of truth. Vargas recently inked an overall production and first-look development deal with A+E Networks; she will also be the face of A&E Network’s new nonfiction journalistic banner, A&E Investigates. The initial project under the A&E Investigates banner is the limited series “Cults and Extreme Belief.”

The A+E Inclusion Award recognizes an individual whose efforts and vision in media champion and reflect the diversity of the world in which we live. Past Honorees include: LeVar Burton, Jonathan Murray.

CANADIAN AWARD OF DISTINCTION: Sheila Hockin (The Handmaid’s Tale, Vikings)
Primetime Emmy Award winner for Outstanding Drama Series (The Handmaid’s Tale), Sheila Hockin is one of Canada’s foremost executive producers, helping bring to life global hits like  The Tudors, The Borgias, Vikings, Penny Dreadful and most recently, the global phenomenon that is The Handmaid’s Tale. Before striking out on her own, Hockin co-founded one of Canada’s highest-profile independent production companies, Temple Street Productions, where she spent a decade producing such hits as Queer as Folk, Canada’s Next Top Model, and How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria? This award is presented to a Canadian whose body of work exemplifies outstanding achievement in the entertainment industry. Past Honorees include:  Just For Laughs, Eric McCormack, Kim Cattrall.

INNOVATIVE PRODUCER AWARD: New Metric Media (Letterkenny, Bad Blood)
New Metric Media is a film, television, and new-media production company that works with top creative talent to produce outstanding content for domestic and international markets. Past and present projects include the CraveTV hit original comedy Letterkenny as well as the half-hour CraveTV comedy What Would Sal Do? and the six-episode, one-hour CityTV/FX Canada limited series Bad Blood. Not content to rest on traditional marketing alone, New Metric has successfully transformed its hit property Letterkenny into a robust consumer brand, complete with its own craft brew and touring live show. The innovative approach has made a discernible impact on Canadian culture, with Letterkenny phrases a part of regular lexicon and ironic “Hard No” tees a regular sight on the street.

The Innovative Producer Award recognizes the entrepreneurial excellence and achievements of an independent producer in TV/digital media. Past Honorees include:  Wolf + Rabbit, Don Carmody, marblemedia.

Additional awards to be presented at the 2018 Rockies Gala include: The Hollywood Reporter Impact Award, The Grand Jury Prize, and Program of the Year.

Host Kristin Chenoweth can next be seen in the upcoming second season of NBC’s “Trial & Error,” which premieres on July 19.

The Rockies are BANFF’s flagship awards program, taking place over two days and two events. Celebrated annually on the second day of the festival is the Rockie Awards Program Competition followed by the hors-concours (out-of competition) Rockie Awards Gala Ceremony which takes place on the third night of the festival honouring outstanding talent and executives from the industry. Over the years, the prestigious gala event has attracted some of the industry’s biggest names including Sir Laurence Olivier, Gregory Peck, Dinah Shore, Ricky Gervais, Chuck Lorre, Martin Short, James Burrows, John Cleese, David E. Kelly, Dick Wolf, Will Arnett, Christine Baranski, David Attenborough, Larry King, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, John Ridley, Jill Soloway, and Anthony Anderson, to a name a few.

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