Rex Tasker, 85, on July 24, at his home in Musquodoboit Harbour, NS.
A student of the London Film School, Tasker arrived in Canada in 1958 to work with the National Film Board, based in Montreal. For the first 12 years, he was a picture editor, researcher, writer, director and producer, earning multiple honours for his work, including an Oscar nomination for “Helicopter Canada” in addition to awards for “Fields of Sacrifice,” “Steeltown,” “The White Ship” and “The Oshawa Kid.” He also worked on the Challenge for Change project in Thunder Bay to establish community video production, and taught film at Stanford University, New York University, the University of Toledo, and Florida State University. In 1973, he moved to Nova Scotia to set up the NFB’s Atlantic Centre with nearly 100 films produced under his tenure as head of the studio. Tasker retired from the NFB in 1992. Of his many accolades, he was awarded the John Grierson Genie Award for “contribution to Canadian Film in the spirit and tradition of John Grierson” in 1980. In 1982, the Atlantic Film Festival dubbed its best documentary film award, the “Rex Tasker Award.” In retirement, Tasker worked on small, one-man productions tackling subjects like a successful fishing cooperative in Belize, and the history of Nova Scotia’s Eastern Shore, where he lived for more than 40 years.