Nine Canadians are among those nominated for the 89th Academy Awards. They include Howard Barish, co-producer (13th), Documentary (Feature); Sylvain Bellemare (Arrival), Sound Editing; Bernard Gariépy Strobl and Claude La Haye (Arrival), Sound Mixing; Ryan Gosling (La La Land), Actor in a Leading Role; Shawn Levy, co-producer (Arrival), Best Picture; Theodore Ushev (Blind Vaysha), Short Film (Animated), National Film Board of Canada; Patrice Vermette (Arrival), Production Design; and Denis Villeneuve (Arrival), Directing. CTV will carry the Oscars live on Feb. 26.
Canada’s LGBTQ network, OUTtv, has been nominated for a 2017 Canadian Screen Award for Best Reality/Competition Program or Series. Knock Knock Ghost, produced by Convergent Productions, follows psychic-medium Jim Hunt, comedian Richard Ryder and trembling assistant Brian Doyle, as they travel the country visiting some of Canada’s most-haunted locations while keeping their sense of humour.
Michael Landsberg is being awarded a Meritorious Service Medal (Civil Division) for his mental health advocacy. Landsberg will be presented with the honour by Governor General David Johnston at a ceremony at Rideau Hall at a later date. The Meritorious Service Medal is awarded to Canadians who have performed exceptional deeds or activities that set an example for others to follow, improve the quality of life of a community and bring benefit or honour to Canada. Landsberg has spoken publicly about his personal battle with depression since 2009 and considers his ability to help reduce the stigma of mental illness as his most important professional calling. A recognizable on-air personality at TSN since its launch in 1984, Landsberg can be heard every weekday morning on TSN 1050 Radio (CHUM-AM) in Toronto as the co-host of Naylor & Landsberg.
CraveTV’s third Canadian Original series What Would Sal Do? begins streaming March 24. From New Metric Media, the producers of CraveTV comedy Letterkenny, the eight-episode, half-hour comedy follows an underachiever who discovers he’s the second coming of Christ. The series received three Canadian Screen Award nominations last week including Best Performance by an Actress in a Continuing Leading Comedic Role (Jennifer Dale); Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Supporting Role or Guest Role in a Comedic Series (Ryan McDonald); and Best Writing in a Comedy Program or Series (Andrew De Angelis).
Walt Disney Company network Freeform put the entire 10-episode season of new sci-fi drama Beyond on digital and on-demand platforms on Jan. 2 following its two-hour television premiere, as conventional TV networks continue to experiment with the Netflix binge-release model. In its earnings report last week, Netflix made note of competition from rivals using the strategy, including BBC which has announced it will release full seasons of major series on its digital platform ahead of their episodic run on traditional television.
CBC Radio One’s The Current continues to host public forums around the public broadcaster’s first-ever short, virtual reality documentary that takes the viewer to British Columbia’s notorious Highway 16 where it’s believed as many as 50 women have gone missing since 1969. The four-minute doc, directed by Anishinaabe filmmaker Lisa Jackson, can be experienced using the CBC VR Android or CBC VR iOS app. Alternately, you can watch the 360 video using the YouTube or Facebook apps on a smartphone.
In honour of the 150th anniversary of Canada’s Confederation and Telefilm Canada’s upcoming 50th anniversary, multiplatform “discoverability” initiatives are being launched to promote English- and French-language Canadian movies. They include a specially curated Canada First selection of 150 Canadian feature films on iTunes; a complimentary selection of Canadian films offered to travellers along VIA Rail Canada’s Quebec City–Windsor corridor; and the international digital distribution and marketing of Canadian films on VoD platforms.