Saturday, April 10, 2010

FWC Genies TalkBack 2010 - A Film Artist Salon

The First Weekend Club is a free cross-Canada film club and grassroots initiative dedicated to promote Canadian films, especially for a film's critical first weekend theatrical release. This is particularly important in Canada, since our films are smaller independent projects that depend on strong opening to help it have a longer and healthier theatrical run. The First Weekend Club was founded in February of 2003 by Anita Adams in Vancouver, and has expanded to other cities including Toronto, Calgary, Victoria, Ottawa, Halifax and Montreal.

The club also hosts special events such as the upcoming TalkBack: A Film Artist Salon in which several filmmakers who are nominated for Genie Awards will be interviewed by noted Toronto film critic Richard Crouse. The event takes place Sunday April 11 at 3pm at the Drake Hotel.

Here are the details:

Sunday, April 11, 2010, 3pm
The Drake Underground

TalkBack: A Film Artist Salon is back this year! Join us on the night before the 2010 Genie Awards for an afternoon of intimate conversations with some of Canada's finest filmmaking talent.

We are thrilled to bring you a wonderful panel of Genie Nominated guests including Kari Skogland (Director of Fifty Dead Men Walking), Charles Officer (Director of Nurse.Fighter.Boy), Brett Gaylor (Director of RIP: A Remix Manifesto) and and Chris Landreth (Director of The Spine). The panel will be moderated by the one and only Richard Crouse (Canada AM, NewsTalk 1010).

Event Details 

WHEN: Sunday April 11th, 3:00pm
The Drake Underground (1150 Queen St W)
TalkBack to start at 3pm. Reception to follow.
$15 through PayPal (complementary drink with your ticket!)
Buy your ticket(s) online:
For any questions contact Mars Horodyski at . You must buy your tickets in advance. Space is limited.
****Don't miss the LIVE broadcast of the 30th Annual Genie Awards!****
Monday, April 12, 2010 at 9:00pm EDT
on Canwest-owned Independent Film Channel and via live webcast on

Featured TalkBack Guests:



Kari's most recent film is Fifty Dead Men Walking (starring Sir Ben Kingsley, Jim Sturgess, Kevin Zegers), as writer/director/producer. It premiered at a Gala at the Toronto International Film Festival 2008, won Critics Top Ten, won the Vancouver Film Festival top prize and Kariwon DGC Best Director. The film is presently nominated for 7 Genie awards and was nominated for a Spirit Award. Kari's previous film (also as director, writer, producer), an adaptation of the best selling book The Stone Angel, starring Ellen Burstyn, Ellen Page, (Vivendi) premiered at the Toronto Film Festival in 2007 – Kari was nominated for DGC Best Director/Best Film and several Genies including Best Actress and WGC for Best Screenplay, it won a Genie for Best Music. Kari was named by Hollywood Reporter as one of its "Ten Directors to Watch" for her debut as writer-director of Liberty Stands Still. Kari's career began in Canada by directing award winning commercials and music videos. She then moved into television where she started with the enormously successful and multi-award winning series Traders (nominated for 9 Geminis including Best Director and won Best Series). White Lies ,a movie for CBC, was nominated for several Geminis and an International Emmy and won a Tout Ecran. Her films The Size of Watermelons starring Donal Logue and Paul Rudd, Men With Guns starring Donal Logue and Callum Keith Rennie, Liberty Stands Still (written by Kari as well) starring Wesley Snipes and Linda Fiorentino, have all screened and won awards at major festivals in Canada (Toronto FF, Montreal FF), the US (Slamdance, Chicago, Houston, USA, New York, Cinequest, Seattle) and around the world. She was also nominated a for a DGC best director and a Gemini for her work on The 11th Hour - CTV and for her film Chicks With Sticks and won the DGC Best Director for her work on the mini-series Terminal City. Kari was the honoured director at the 2008 Female Eye Film Festival.


Charles Officer studied visual art in the United Kingdom and communication design at Ontario College of Art & Design. Charles worked as a graphic designer and creative director before attending the Neighbourhood Playhouse School of Theatre in New York City. Since then, Charles has appeared in stage, film and television productions, recently starring in the Theatre Calgary/Soulpepper co-production of A Raisin In The Sun.

Officer's debut short film, When Morning Comes premiered at the 2000 Toronto Int'l Film Festival to wide acclaim. In 2001, he completed the Alliance Atlantis Directors Lab at the Canadian Film Centre, where his second film, Short Hymn_Silent War received a Special Jury Citation at TIFF 2002 and a Genie nomination in 2004. In 2005, Charles developed and directed the television pilot Hotel Babylon. Then followed with Hotel Vladivostok and Everything is Love & Fear, co-created with Ingrid Veninger as an international collaboration in Russia. Canadian reggae, punk band, Bedouin Soundclash commissioned Charles to direct a documentary to accompany their 2007 release of Street Gospels and In The Year of Our Lord was created. Also in 2007, episodes of the hit Global television series, Da Kink In My Hair found Charles honing his hard hat director experience. His screenplay, Nurse.Fighter.Boy was selected to participate in the 'Sparkling Tales' writers lab moderated by acclaimed producer, Fred Roos at the 57th Berlinale Film Festival. The lyrical love story about a young boy's faith in magic premiered at TIFF 08' and was picked up by international sales agent Rezo Films based in Paris, France. Nurse.Fighter.Boy was theatrically released in 2009 by Mongrel Media and US distributor, Cinetic Media.

Charles was invited to participate in the Writer's Unit by Sienna Films and Mongrel Media to develop his crime, thriller screenplay Akilla's Escape. While his second dramatic feature is projected for production in 2010, Charles is currently filming the National Film Board produced feature documentary about African-Canadian sprinter, Harry Winston Jerome. Most recently, Charles was named "10 to Watch" in Canadian cinema by Playback and was selected by filmmaker, Ron Mann for the 2009 Premier's Emerging Artist Award.


brettgaylor"Brett Gaylor has made begging to differ from the corporate masters his life mission" – so says Canada's The Globe and Mail. With a career dedicated to social documentary and new media, he is the creator of Open Source Cinema, a social network to help filmmakers create in collaboration with their audience. He is also the web producer of the Homeless, a web project dedicated to bridging the digital divide, which has won the Canada New Media Award for excellence in Social Media, and the United Nations World Summit Award for e-content. Brett's feature documentary, Rip! A Remix Manifesto has played festivals around the world, been broadcast internationally, and has had a theatrical release in North America, Europe and Australia. Brett has been on staff at the Montreal social documentary house EyeSteelFilm for 6 years as an editor, music supervisor, director and head of New Media.


Chris Landreth went into animation as a second career after a stint as an engineer. He received his MS degree in Theoretical and Applied Mechanics from the University of Illinois in 1986. For three years he worked in experimental research in Fluid Mechanics at the University of Illinois before making his leap into computer animation.

In 1994 Landreth joined Alias/Wavefront, where it was his job to define, test and abuse animation software, in-house, before it was released to the public. In addition to well-mannered software, this resulted in the production of animated short films, including The End (1995) and Bingo (1998).

In his surreal short The End, the animator discovers he's the character in his own work while trying to think of a decent ending for it (it will not be the first time that Landreth challenges the illusion he is trying to create). Bingo is a 5-minute computer animated adaptation of a live theatre performance called Disregard This Play by the Chicago-based theatre company, The Neo-Futurists. The recorded audio performance of this absurdist play was used in Bingo, which then incorporated bizarre visual imagery and exaggerated characterization to support the telling of the story. Both films have received wide international recognition and numerous awards, including an Academy Award nomination for The End in 1996 for Best Animated Short Film and a 1999 Genie for Bingo.

Now recognized as one of the animation world's rising stars, Landreth embarked on his most ambitious project yet: the animated documentary Ryan (2004), which marked Landreth's first co-production with Copperheart Entertainment and the National Film Board of Canada. Ryan, a portrait of animator Ryan Larkin, allowed Landreth to push the boundaries of the visual technique he calls psycho-realism – in which the body becomes a visual metaphor for a character's deepest inner states. Ryan immediately became a contemporary classic, and was honoured with more than 50 awards, including an Oscar®. Working with the same team of producers, Landreth has followed up Ryan with The Spine (2009), a film that continues his explorations in the use of unique imagery to represent human psychological turmoil

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