Tag Archives: Banff World Media Festival

Minister of Canadian Heritage Steven Guilbeault to keynote at BANFF 2021

From a media release:

The Banff World Media Festival (BANFF) is proud to announce that the Honourable Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Canadian Heritage, will speak on Thursday, June 17, participating in a virtual keynote conversation during the Festival’s MARKETPLACE WEEK (June 14-18, 2021), which kicks off a month of curated online programming.

Now in its 42nd year, BANFF is Canada’s international conference and marketplace where new business partnerships are forged and new TV, film, and digital media projects are ignited. BANFF’s inbound trade mission model has a proven record of success at scale, bringing the Canadian screen industry and its innovative businesses together with large numbers of global production partners and investors, resulting in the launch of significant new business ventures and new screen-based projects that are “green-lighted” at home and abroad.

“In these difficult times, we couldn’t be more proud to support a creative, dynamic and innovative industry that brings culture to the forefront. The Banff World Media Festival is a must-attend international marketplace where the world’s largest broadcasters and digital media companies discuss issues and trends, forge relationships, and provide unique networking opportunities. New projects and co-productions take shape at this festival, allowing Canadian creativity to shine and spread to audiences across the globe.” —The Honourable Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Canadian Heritage.

With delegates from more than 50 countries, BANFF attracts the world’s top creators, producers, showrunners, talent, networks, studios, streamers, press and media companies. The 2021 edition of the Festival is poised to build on the success of last year’s virtual event, with a purpose-built online platform that will connect the global media industry in real-time to ignite new projects and support business development.

“This is a watershed year with monumental challenges and paradigm change shaping the present and future for Canadian and international cultural and media industries” said Jenn Kuzmyk, Executive Director, Banff World Media Festival. “As the hub for important conversations that effect action and point the way forward, we are thrilled to host Minister Guilbeault at BANFF 2021. We look forward to working with the Canadian government and all industry stakeholders at this year’s Festival and beyond.”

Taking place online from June 14 – July 16, the Banff World Media Festival attracts the world’s top creators, producers, showrunners, talent, networks, studios, streamers, press, and media companies. The 2021 virtual edition of the Festival is poised to build on the success of last year’s virtual event, with an all-new purpose-built online platform that will facilitate thousands of real-time meetings, chat, personalized video suites, a project lounge, multiple events, keynotes, master classes and panels as well as a thriving online delegate lounge. It is the world’s most effective online market for development, co-productions, and business development, connecting the global media industry to ignite new projects and support new ventures.

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CRTC Chairperson and CEO Ian Scott to give keynote at BANFF 2021

From a media release:

The Banff World Media Festival (BANFF) is proud to announce that CRTC Chairperson and CEO Ian Scott, will speak on BANFF 2021’s opening day Monday, June 14, with a virtual keynote session as the Festival launches MARKETPLACE WEEK and a month of curated online programming.

Now in its 42nd year, BANFF is Canada’s international conference and marketplace where new business partnerships are forged and new TV, film and digital media projects are ignited.

“I am pleased to help kick off the world-renowned BANFF festival. In these unprecedented times, we’ve come to appreciate even more the importance of Canada’s high-quality broadcasting and production industries. While we must all adapt to significant changes, including proposed legislative changes that aim to make the broadcasting system more inclusive, this is nevertheless an exciting time for all those involved in the field. I’m certain the festival as a whole will reflect this enthusiasm and I look forward to contributing to this ongoing dialogue,” stated Ian Scott, the CRTC’s Chairperson and CEO.

With delegates from more than 50 countries, BANFF attracts the world’s top creators, producers, showrunners, talent, networks, studios, streamers, press and media companies. The 2021 edition of the Festival is poised to build on the success of last year’s virtual event, with a purpose-built online platform that will connect the global media industry to ignite new projects and support business development.

“Chairperson Scott’s keynote session at the Festival comes at a pivotal time of critical examination and foundational change for the Canadian and international media industry,” said Jenn Kuzmyk, Executive Director, Banff World Media Festival. “As the place for candid conversations that effect action and point the way forward, we are thrilled to host the head of the CRTC at BANFF 2021.”

In addition to its Festival programming and marketplace, BANFF continues to deliver important fellowships and initiatives including The BANFF Spark Accelerator for Women in the Business of Media, supported by the Government of Canada which empowers Canadian women entrepreneurs to launch and grow their own sustainable businesses within the screen-based industries as well as the Netflix-BANFF Diversity of Voices Initiative, a program that jumpstarts and accelerates the careers of up to 100 Black, Indigenous and people of colour producers and creators.

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Banff World Media Festival announces 2021 virtual edition from June 14-July 16

From a media release:

The Banff World Media Festival (BANFF) is proud to announce this year’s edition taking place between June 14th – July 16th featuring an all-new bespoke online platform that will connect the global media industry to ignite new projects and support business development.

The Festival has invested in building a new virtual industry and event hub – an innovative online meeting and content environment designed specifically for the entertainment business. Via this new platform, BANFF will feature exponentially more formats to connect participants with each other one on one and in groups. The new platform will launch in April with exclusive sneak peeks in the months preceding.

“Great content and successful business ventures are fueled by meaningful personal connections. BANFF has always been about bringing people together, and this year’s Festival will do that on a grand virtual scale,” said Jenn Kuzmyk, Executive Director, Banff World Media Festival. “We believe our industry must recognize and act on its role in the movements for social, political, and environmental progress. This year’s Festival content will continue to drive conversation and action, highlighting the power that the entertainment industry has to change minds, change policy, and create opportunities for those who have historically been underrepresented.”

From June 14-18, BANFF’s new online platform will bring the Canadian and global media industry together as part of a new initiative called MARKETPLACE WEEK, where participants can virtually meet, screen, pitch, enlighten and socialize all in real time. The renowned Rockie Awards International Program Competition (June 15), as well as the Festival’s signature Summit Series keynotes, high level industry panels and an array of networking, parties and curated events will punctuate this exciting week. The Festival’s vibrant online delegate lounge environments will feature exhibitors and a communal space where individuals can connect for scheduled meetings, special curated events, and serendipitous networking. Companies and delegations will gather in virtual Pavilions featuring multiple meeting spaces, and every delegate has their own customized private video conferencing room. Integrated messaging and scheduling tools will make the virtual meeting and/or pitching experience easy.

BANFF 2021 continues June 21-July 16, premiering a curated series of live and interactive topical panel discussions, celebrity Master Classes, In Conversations, as well as an array of programmed and networking formats. In addition, BANFF MARKETPLACE pass holders will have access to exclusive meeting opportunities including the Festival’s signature Speed Meetings, 30 Minutes With buyer mandates, and group sessions offering unparalleled access to high level showrunners, directors and senior executives from the world’s networks, streamers and media companies.

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2020 Rockie Awards International Program Competition winners announced

From a media release:

The Banff World Media Festival (BANFF) is proud to announce the winners of the 2020 Rockie Awards International Program Competition. Hosted by Aurora Browne, Carolyn Taylor and Jennifer Whalen of the award-winning Canadian sketch comedy Baroness von Sketch Show, the virtual edition of the Rockie Awards International Program Competition was streamed live celebrating excellence in television and digital media content from around the world.

One of the largest awards programs of its kind and juried by an esteemed panel of 150 international industry professionals, the Rockie Awards International Program Competition presented awards in twenty-six (26) categories spanning Documentary & Factual, Arts & Entertainment, Children & Youth, Scripted and Podcast. In addition, special gala awards were presented including Innovative Producer Award, A+E Inclusion Award, Canadian Award of Distinction, Francophone Prize, $25,000 Rogers Prize for Excellence in Canadian Content and the Grand Jury Prize.

The competition featured 128 nominations from 35 countries including the UK, USA, Canada, Belgium, France, Germany, Australia, Japan, China and Switzerland.

International Program Competition winners include:

Drama Series: English Language
Gentleman Jack
BBC, HBO, Lookout Point
UK, USA

Comedy Series: English Language
Fleabag
all3media, BBC Three, Two Brothers Pictures
UK

Limited Series
Chernobyl
HBO, Sister, Sky Atlantic, The Mighty Mint, Word Games
Lithuania, UK, Ukraine, USA

Drama Series: Non-English Language
Giri/Haji (Duty/Shame)
BBC Two, Netflix, Sister
Japan, UK

Comedy Series: Non-English Language
Mytho
ARTE France, Netflix
France

Children & Youth Fiction Series
Hardball
ABC iview, ABC ME, Australian Children’s Foundation, Northern Pictures
Australia, UK

Lifestyle Program
Employable Me
Accessible Media Inc., all3media, Thomas Howe Associates Inc.
Canada

Comedy & Variety Program
Baroness von Sketch Show
CBC, Frantic Films
Canada

Science & Technology Program
Science Fair
Muck Media, National Geographic, Univision
USA

History & Biography Program
Free Solo
Image Nation, Itinerant Media, Little Monster Films, National Geographic, Parkes+MacDonald
USA

Docusoap & Docuseries
Who Are You Calling Fat?
BBC, Love Productions
UK

Sci-Fi & Genre-Based Series
His Dark Materials
Bad Wolf, BBC, HBO
Canada, UK, USA

Podcast of the Year
This Sounds Serious
Castbox, Kelly&Kelly
Canada, USA

Innovative Producer Award
Winner: Wattpad Studios
The Innovative Producer Award recognizes the entrepreneurial excellence and achievements of an independent producer in TV/digital media.

A+ E Inclusion Award
Winner: Niecy Nash
The A+E Inclusion Award is presented in recognition of visionary work in media that champions and reflects the diversity of the world in which we live.

Canadian Award of Distinction
Winner: Aurora Browne, Carolyn Taylor, Jennifer Whalen & Meredith MacNeill of Baroness von Sketch Show
For the first time, this year the award is presented to a group whose body of work exemplifies outstanding achievement in the entertainment industry.

Francophone Prize
Winner: MAMMOUTH 2019
The Francophone Prize is awarded to the jury’s highest-scoring French-language video submission.

Rogers Prize for Excellence in Canadian Content
Winner: Baroness von Sketch Show 
The $25,000 Rogers Prize is awarded to the highest-scoring Canadian program or property in the Rockies International Program Competition across two rounds of independent jury review.

Grand Jury Prize 
Winner: Fleabag
The Grand Jury Prize recognizes the “best in show” from all Rockies International Program Competition winning entries.Facebooktwitterredditlinkedinmail

Burden of Truth: Kristin Kreuk reflects on her past and looks to the future

Kristin Kreuk has, literally, grown up on television. The Vancouver native, who landed roles on both the Canadian teen drama Edgemont and The WB/The CW superhero series Smallville in 2001, has seen steady work since.

Her current role? Playing Joanna Hanley on CBC’s Burden of Truth, where she also serves as an executive producer. With Season 3 of the CBC legal drama in production for a winter return, we sat down with Kreuk during the Banff World Media Festival, where she received the Canadian Award of Distinction.

How do you view it when it comes to women being represented either in front of the screen or behind the scenes? Obviously, there’s an issue. Do you feel as though it’s getting better?
Kristin Kreuk: Absolutely. Are we there yet? No. We’re not. I’ve said this many times, but prior to, I think I’ve worked with two female directors on my seven and a bit years on Smallville. Maybe one more than that. So going from that to, I worked with a few more on Beauty and the Beast, and with Burden, we don’t get a lot of directors but for our first two seasons it was like 50:50. Now it’s not, but a part of the reason why it’s not is that so many women are hired across the board until mid-2020. So that’s great. It just means that there are spaces now for the young ones to come up and fill that void. And they need to be supported to do that. And given the chances.

But yeah, I think that it is changing. And in Canada, I feel like we may be a little further ahead and I don’t know for 100 per cent because I haven’t worked in the States for a while, but from what I hear anecdotally you can still end up in a writers’ room in the U.S. and it isn’t even close to par. It’s very much weighted towards male voices. So I know that they’re working on it too.

It feels as though, to me, this has been a natural evolution for you, to move towards being an executive producer. Has it been a conscious decision?
KK: It was a conscious decision for me. I was just joking with these guys. I have been saying for years that I’m done with acting. I want to produce. And I’m moving in that direction. And so it was a decision I made because A, some of this is very practical. I have no other skill sets. I’ve been doing this since I was 17 years old. I understand, I’m going into my 19th season as lead on a television series, which is so insane to me. So I have all this experience with storytelling and I’ve seen how you start a story and I can kind of imagine where it’s going to go and how it might fail or what might happen to it. So all of that lends itself to moving into a more creative producing role.

A woman looks off into the distance.It’s still hard for me to make the transition. I think that it will be a process over time to the point where I can take on a show more on my own and not have other producers that I need. I will always have people, I think because I’m not a money person and just it’s not my skill set yet. Maybe it will be one day. As of now, I don’t feel like I have the entire skillset required to do the job, but I think that I’m getting closer and closer.

Directing? Does that interest you at all?
KK: You know what, it doesn’t. And I wish it freaking did. I wish that’s what I wanted to do. I think I’m a visual person. I think I’m just uncomfortable handling a set. I think that it’s a very specific environment that I just don’t… And it’s not even out of fear. I just don’t want to do that. I don’t think. I mean, never say never, I suppose. But I have friends who are like, ‘Yeah, I want to direct,’ and they’re former actors who are moving into other fields. Women especially want to move out of acting because as you get older, sadly, you sort of age out a little. Which we can also change when we’re in positions of power. But yeah, I wish, I wish, wish. Directing, I wish, directing.

It was interesting watching those Season 1 and Season 2 clips again this morning because, specifically the Season 2 clips that I made note of, where the camera was in tight. I feel like that’s different from season one.
KK: It’s new. We made a conscious decision to change the look of the show between Season 1 and Season 2. And then Thom Best, who was our Season 2 director of photography, and director Grant Harvey got together and kind of pitched a whole look. And they were like, ‘We want to get more intimate close-ups of the characters,’ which we had certainly not done and I’m always like, ‘Blah, I don’t want to be that close.’ But it really was effective. Really effective.

Not only that, they shift compositionally. So they changed the compositional palette of the show and the colour palette, too. The whole thing is a little more cinematic versus season one, which was also beautiful, but much more like small-town and warm and glowy and I think that the shift was really great for the story that we were telling for season two.

You mentioned Edgemont so I have to ask you about that. It’s on Encore+. Have you gone and looked at any old episodes?
KK: God, no. I can’t do it.

Isn’t that incredible that this show that you made is now available on YouTube for people to stream any time they want?
KK: It is so bizarre to me that Edgemont was and continues to be popular. It was so popular. Not just in Canada. In France, it was massively popular. I would get recognized for Edgemont in France. So funny. And I was on Smallville simultaneously. I did both those jobs at the same time. And I think that it’s great. It’s such a fun small little show and we did five seasons of that show. And it was great. I loved it. I mean, I hated it at first because I had no idea what I was doing and I felt so uncomfortable, but I grew to love it.

A woman, looking angry, talks to a man.What would you have told your younger self?
KK: I would’ve told myself to take classes. I would’ve told myself to make an effort to develop a deep relationship with acting because I didn’t have one and I didn’t understand it. I had only done theatre. So when I started acting, I didn’t know how to be smaller. And then when I did smaller, I lost all of my feelings. And so it was this weird thing and instead of just going like, ‘I’m uncomfortable and I don’t know what I’m doing. I’m just going to go and work really, really, really hard.’ I got scared. And I was like, ‘I’m not doing this any more.’ And it turned out that I just kept doing it and I never really gave myself the time to develop a craft. And I did it all on set. Which is fine, I guess, in the end, but it put me through a lot of discomfort of being like, ‘God, I suck, I suck, I suck, I suck, I suck.’

There are just so many things I would’ve told myself. Also, ‘Don’t stress so much,’ is great too. I think the big lesson, too, is getting over the hump of caring too deeply about what people think of you in a negative sense, because when we started on Smallville, there were no social media. Thank God. But there were forums on the Internet and, I forget, there’s actually a technical term for it, but when you’re drawn to reading the worst things you can about yourself.

It was just something that I was compelled to do. It was almost like I was trying to numb myself to this thing. But why did I care what these people thought? If they thought my eyes were too far apart or they thought that I looked too young or they thought whatever. Or that I was this or that. I’m like, ‘Why was I obsessed over this?’

Season 3 of Burden of Truth returns in winter 2020 to CBC.

Feature image courtesy of Kristian Bogner. Other images courtesy of CBC.Facebooktwitterredditlinkedinmail