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Killjoys producers tease what’s on the way in Season 4

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Killjoys returned for Season 4 on July 20. The show airs Friday nights at 10 p.m. ET on Space. Photo courtesy Bell Media.
Killjoys returned for Season 4 on July 20. The show airs Friday nights at 10 p.m. ET on Space. Photo courtesy Bell Media.

On last week’s season premiere of Killjoys, “The Warrior Princess Bride,” the show took a look back to the past to explore Dutch and Johnny’s relationship with a confrontation with The Lady looming on the horizon. With Season 4 and 5 confirmed to be the series’ final chapters, new showrunner Adam Barken and executive producer Karen Troubetzkoy are in the process of unfolding the endgame of Dutch, Johnny and D’avin. Barken and Troubetzkoy spoke with The Mutt regarding Season 4, the identity of The Lady and the presence of some otherworldly female fashion in the Quad.

The Mutt: Congratulations on being renewed for Season 4 and 5. Did that announcement come as a surprise?

Adam Barken: We found out basically on the night of the finale of Season 3 that we were back. But that’s not uncommon, usually – that was usually around the time that we would make the announcement.

Karen Troubetzkoy: There was a desire to do the show, but I don’t think we found out how many, which was the big excitement. There was nail-biting on my side, Adam is playing it cool. You just don’t know, I mean you really don’t know. It’s a huge deal to get re-ordered, but to get re-ordered for 20 for two seasons is so fortunate and lucky and we’re right in the middle of it now.

AB: The chance to be able to know how you’re going to end the story is not something you get to do a lot, so we were really lucky for that.

TM: I imagine having that security helps you to be able move forward confidently in your storytelling.

AB: Yeah, what we’ve always done at the end of the seasons is go, “Well, we’re going to go out on the best cliffhanger we can and hope to god we get to come back and keep telling this story.” But if this were the end, at least it would feel like there were more adventures but we’ve closed out what we were doing in that season. This one, knowing that we’d have two seasons and we’d be able to head towards the end, we were able to come up with an even bolder ending to Season 4 that’s a real cliffhanger. So that was great.

TM: So you’re going into the endgame here – has the ending already been determined or will it reveal itself during the writing process?

AB: Michelle (Lovretta, the creator of the show), back when we were talking at the end of Season 3, (we wondered) what would be the ideal ending and Michelle already had it in her head. We spent some time before we had the order talking about what would be the best way to get there and tell that story. At one point we said, you know, the best way to do this would be if we had two seasons so we could really explore some elements of the characters and the universe we always wanted to but never had time for, and then end on a hopefully really shocking ending of the end of Season 4. Since we’ve started Season 4, we’ve had a pretty good idea of where we were going. As always in television it’s about figuring out, well that’s the endpoint? What are the bricks that we have to lay to get there? And also to stay loose enough to know that if things change on the way, we could change the ending. But to be honest, we’re still pretty much on track for what we had planned.

TM: You have a very strong fanbase online. Is it gratifying to know Killjoys has connected in that way?

KT: I have to confess that I’m not on Twitter. But Adam has a strong following and beautifully connects with the fans, as does Michelle.

AB: I think we’ve been lucky in this day and age to have the ability to have that direct connection with the fans. I’ve been very blessed to always be on shows that seem to have really kind and generous fans. I think in this day and age not all shows get that, so we’ve been really blessed on Killjoys to have the fanbase that’s not there there to kind of catch us when we trip up, but to kind of be there as cheerleaders. And then hopefully we return the good vibes by giving them a show they like but also giving them a view into how the show gets made and how we’re thinking, without giving them too many spoilers. For me, it’s a great part of the whole experience.

TM: Speaking of Killjoys fans, I took a few questions from the community to ask you. One fan in particular wanted to know where the female characters on your show were able to do their shopping for such extravagant clothing.

AB: (Laughs) This is one that Karen can answer. Karen is amazing at this.

KT: Oh yeah. That’s a combination of Michelle, who feels we should be totally free and not worry too much about continuity or even economy but should give all of our characters a fun flair. We have a great wardrobe department and we have a cast who really enjoys participating and talking about what they’re wearing. Hannah is very, very smart about what Dutch would wear and everybody works collaboratively to create those looks, and we want to have fun with it. It’s a super serious show about some things but it’s not a super serious show about fashion. We are cheeky, and that gives us a lot of liberty as well as with things like hair and continuity. We’re like, who cares? The guys are a little simpler, it’s true. We keep them simple and grounded.

TM: Many fans see sparks in the relationship between Dutch and Johnny. Any chance of anything more developing between those two characters?

AB: From the get-go, I know that for Michelle, the joy of the relationship was actually to explore a platonic friendship that stood the test of time and all the challenges they faced. Obviously, when you’ve got actors like Hannah and Aaron, they can have sparks with anything or anyone. I would say the sparks you see between them from our perspective are – it’s real love, but it’s the love of friendship. But I would say, in the kind of coy way, we’ve got two more seasons to play out. We definitely explore different aspects of their relationship that both confound and also bring them closer together.

Killjoys stars Hannah John-Kamen as Yalena "Dutch" Yardeen,Aaron Ashmore as John Andras "Johnny" Jaqobis and Luke Macfarlane as D'avin Jaqobis. Photo courtesy Bell Media.

Killjoys stars Hannah John-Kamen as Yalena “Dutch” Yardeen, Aaron Ashmore as John Andras “Johnny” Jaqobis and Luke Macfarlane as D’avin Jaqobis. Photo courtesy Bell Media.

TM: Any hints you can give fans as to the identity of The Lady?

AB: I would say that we gave a pretty big hint in Season 3 the first time we saw The Lady – she looked like Khlyen. I would say that’s a hint going forward. The Lady is an enemy of many faces and as such is unlike anybody or anything that they’ve ever faced. We’ve had a lot of fun playing around with all of those fun sci-fi tropes. The final big bad is somebody who is unlike anybody they’ve ever faced before. In Season 4, I’d say we explore one aspect of that and I’d say in Season 5, we get to explore another type of thing, which I’m super excited about.

KT: I think it’s surprising, the places we’ve landed. I’m really excited for people to see it. We knew there would be a Lady, and that’s always daunting for us internally. We’ve come to a place I’d say I’m really pleased with and I didn’t expect for us to get here organically. I can’t wait for people to see the rest of the season.

AB: She’s definitely unlike any villain they’ve faced and to be honest unlike a villain I’ve seen before on TV.

TM: What else are you both excited for in Killjoys Season 4?

KT: I’m most excited about the emotional place we leave things at the end of the season and the fact that we get to follow them through in Season 5. It’s the most delicious thing – it’s not your usual cliffhanger, and that’s what makes it fun. It only could be done if you knew you were getting another season.

AB: For me, particularly in Season 4 – it’s a bit in the rear-view mirror now – when we left Season 3 we had Delle Sayah carrying the child of D’avin and Aneela. And you know, he was obviously growing pretty quickly in the belly. I think – without giving away too many spoilers – where that goes and what that does to D’avin and Dutch and Johnny, but in particular what it does to D’avin in terms of who he is and the new kind of role as a father and a parent. Especially considering the backstory that we set up in terms of how he and Johnny were raised. That was something that was really exciting to explore when we were writing Season 4. It ended up in ways that I was really, really pleased with. I can’t wait for the audience to see that personal side of D’avin. It’s a lot of fun.

The fourth season of Killjoys airs Friday nights at 10 p.m. ET on Space.

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Director Justin McConnell’s Lifechanger shapeshifts in fresh and surprising ways

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Lifechanger is part body horror and part thriller as Drew (played by multiple actors) seeks to correct his misdeeds with the woman he loves, leaving a trail of destruction in his wake. The film stars Lora Burke, Jack Foley, Elitsa Bako and more. Photo courtesy GAT PR.
Lifechanger follows Drew (played by multiple actors), a shapeshifter seeking to correct his misdeeds with the woman he loves, leaving a trail of destruction in his wake. The film stars Lora Burke, Jack Foley, Elitsa Bako and more. Photo courtesy GAT PR.

In Lifechanger, writer/director Justin McConnell’s (Broken Mile, Skull World) gripping and innovative thriller, a shapeshifter seeks to make things right with those he’s wronged, all the while leaving a trail of destruction in his wake. It’s a confident and refreshing take on the genre, one that effectively plays on its surprisingly affecting premise.

McConnell spoke with The Mutt to discuss Lifechanger, the challenges of utilizing an ensemble to play the same character and his strategy when it comes to standing out in a competitive genre. This interview has been edited and condensed for length.

THE MUTT: The concept behind Lifechanger is pretty novel. Where’d you come up with it?

JUSTIN MCCONNELL: Well, in 2014 I was trying to come up with an idea I could do for a really low budget because I was frustrated trying to get a couple of larger projects off the ground. So I started brainstorming what I could do with basically pocket change. During that brainstorming session I just let ideas percolate and I was on a bus one day and thought, “What if I saw myself in public?” Which, of course, is Denis Villeneuve’s Enemy. But from that point, the idea organically grew into what this became. And then tonally, at that time I had been introspective, going through a lot of self-examination and depression, and that fed into the story and the tone of the script and who the character ended up being.

TM: What else played into the script? Were you influenced at all by other films in the genre?

JM: I watched every horror movie I could get my hands on growing up, and I still do. I’ve obviously seen Invasion of the Body Snatchers, The Thing, The Hidden, The First Power… the list is long of things that would make up the DNA of this idea, but it’s not like I was specifically thinking about one or two of those movies and thinking, “I’ll make a movie like that.” It just sort of came out of me.

TM: You incorporating that element of having a heart and a brain behind the horror elements of this movie… why do you think that’s important in this genre?

JM: I think it’s important in this particular film and in a lot of horror because you need to make something that stands out. The more personal you can get on an emotional level, the more they’re going to remember the film and the more it will cut through the noise. There’s way too much out there now. There’s a lot that doesn’t rise to the top and it’s very difficult to get noticed. So it’s good to break through into other genres and appeal to people who aren’t just hardcore goreheads. Though there’s nothing wrong with that approach, either I wouldn’t necessarily say a lot of the projects I’m working on now are full of heart. But for this one, it just organically kind of became that way, and I wanted to do something a little bit more grounded and personal while still being a horror film.

TM: I’ve seen the film described as part psychological thriller, part body horror… at this point in the process, how do you tend to explain the story to the unfamiliar?

JM: I like to say that it’s about a murderous shapeshifter on a mission trying to make things right with the woman he loves, and I leave it at that and let people come to their own conclusions. But there’s a lot you could say about the story. It’s less of a love story and more of an obsession story and about trying to be a better person and coming to terms with guilt. There’s a lot of other stuff going on, but I usually pitch it to people in the flattest way possible, with a hook, and let them come to their own conclusions.

Lifechanger director Justin McConnell said utilizing a diverse cast to portray the same character of Drew was a challenge, but one he relished taking on as a filmmaker. Photo courtesy GAT PR

Lifechanger director Justin McConnell said utilizing a diverse cast to portray the same character of Drew was a challenge, but one he relished taking on as a filmmaker. Photo courtesy GAT PR

TM: So, really, the shapeshifter element, that’s a tool to tell a deeper story. What was the balance there in telling that deeper story and pairing it with the shapeshifter story?

JM: It was important to me to do something fresh and new and get into the head of what a creature like this would be like at this stage in their life, having to live like a human all the time but having to life just outside of the species. So that was absolutely important, but you can pull that away and look at it on a metaphorical level. He’s changing and becoming someone else until he becomes someone else who appeals to the woman he loves. So it’s almost like a metaphor that if you’re in a bad relationship, you put on a mask and try to become who your partner wants you to be. If you do that your entire life, you end up living your entire life and never being yourself.

TM: As a director, what throughlines did you want to communicate to your cast to ensure they were playing this character using their own strengths as actors while still playing the same individual? 

JM: Well, the first thing I did when I had everyone casted was that I had written up a two- or three-page summary so they knew who this person is, where they are coming from, how they’d be psychologically. I tried to get that up front. We also had a “Drew boot camp,” where everybody who had to play Drew sat at a big conference table and we just talked for a few hours. In that session, we came up with stuff like the common tics that he has, the tone of voice that he uses fairly regularly, but I didn’t really want to step on their individual performances. So it was very specific things that could tie them to the character in a visible way without them having to overthink and have to act like the other person as much as possible, because I figured that would make all the performances really stilted. I tried to control that on set as best I could without stepping on it too much. In post-production, we as a team had to be very mindful of how Drew comes across on screen. If any particular actor had a scene or a delivery that was too far outside of what Drew’s character would be, it was cut out of the film.

TM: You guys were working with a limited budget, but the makeup and effects are very strong in the film. You took home the Best Practical Effects award from the Toronto After Dark festival. What was your approach to the effects given your budget?

JM: I’m pretty decently connected with the prosthetic and makeup effects community in Toronto, and there are a lot of really high-end effects people in the city. I knew that David Scott had wanted to work with me for quite a while, with his company Form & Dynamics, so I approached him with a listing of all the effects breakdowns. It was really quickly realized that we could actually pull off what I wanted to pull off. And we were clever and cut some corners and adapted past effects that they’d done and reskinned them and found other ways to cut costs, because we had a low-budget but we still wanted to pull off a ton of effects.

TM: Any parting words to moviegoers who haven’t seen Lifechanger yet?

JM: You don’t necessarily have to be a horror fan to enjoy this film. Anyone who is looking for a different kind of story, (Lifechanger is) something that’s violent but isn’t so gory that it’ll turn you off if you’re not into that kind of thing. And just to see a sample of what Canadian indie genre films are doing these days, because I think we’re in an independent renaissance in Canada right now. There are so many great Canadian independent films that have been funded outside of the Telefilm system in the last five years or so. It’s worth checking out and removing some of the stigma of thinking, “Oh, it’s just a Canadian movie.” That’s what I would say to Canadians. Anyone else, you’ll know pretty quickly by seeing the trailer whether you want to see it or not. Go into it with an open mind. If you like it, great, if you don’t, well, it’s not for everybody. Hopefully you enjoy it.

Lifechanger is now available on VOD across North America. For more information, click here.

To go back to the front page, click here.

Next up on The Mutt: Trench 11 takes the horror of the First World War deep underground

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The Woman Who Loves Giraffes follows life of famed zoologist

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The Woman Who Loves Giraffes focuses on zoologist Dr. Anne Innis Dagg, pictured here feeding giraffes at the Brookfield Zoo in Chicago in 2016. Photo courtesy Elaisa Vargas
The Woman Who Loves Giraffes focuses on zoologist Dr. Anne Innis Dagg, pictured here feeding giraffes at the Brookfield Zoo in Chicago in 2016. Photo courtesy Elaisa Vargas

Canadian zoologist Dr. Anne Innis Dagg, the central figure of The Woman Who Loves Giraffes, still finds it difficult to articulate exactly why her fascination and love for giraffes has persisted throughout her entire life. But Alison Reid, director of the 83-minute documentary, has a theory.

“She’s just captivated by the way they move. They’re such a tall and impressive creature. And (Anne) says, even if a giraffe is just walking, she always says, ‘Isn’t that stately?’” Reid said. “I think there’s something about their personalities that touches her, as well – they’re just so gentle and understated, but curious.

“I think it was because she was captivated at such a young age. There’s something about them imprinted on her. It became part of her DNA, somehow.”

Born in 1933 in Toronto, Dagg became fascinated with giraffes after visiting the Brookfield Zoo in Illinois at a young age. During the mid-1950s, she traveled alone to South Africa to study the animals, years before a similar expedition was undertaken by English primatologist Jane Goodall.

“(Studying animals in this fashion) wasn’t done at all at this time,” Reid said. “She was groundbreaking. Scientists did not study animals in the way they do now.”

After she returned to Canada, Dagg completed her PhD in animal behaviour at the University of Waterloo. Though her research and publication quickly became highly-lauded in academia, Dagg’s attempts to secure tenure at the University of Guelph were denied by administrators, who questioned her fitness for the role despite her ample qualifications. 

“I think at the time she was incredibly hurt and incredibly affected by it. She says in the film that she was so depressed over it – it cut to the core of her being,” Reid said. “And quite frankly, we were ripped off. The scientific community was ripped off in not allowing her to continue her studies. She was an incredible teacher. She ended up being a resource person at the University of Waterloo.”

But though Dagg was hurt and affected by the mistreatment, she pushed back. She began to research and write on gender bias in academia, something Reid said is as fundamental to her legacy as an educator as her work on giraffes. 

“They’re so intertwined. Her giraffe journey was so affected by the discrimination she faced and inspired her feminist activity. The two are co-mingled, for sure,” Reid said. “She’ll always be the pioneer of giraffe biology. She’ll always be that. But we’re hoping, she’s been nominated for the Order of Canada, so we’re really hoping that that comes to be. I think that would be a really good recognition for her.

“But we’re also hoping that the universities that prevented her from continuing her studies, perhaps they will come up with something that will be a legacy.”

Director Alison Reid (right) initially intended to make a narrative feature based on the life of Dr. Anne Innis Dagg before discovering the zoologist planned on making a return trip to Africa. Photo courtesy Anne Dixon.

Director Alison Reid (right) initially intended to make a narrative feature based on the life of Dr. Anne Innis Dagg before discovering the zoologist planned on making a return trip to Africa. Photo courtesy Anne Dixon.

It’s a fuller understanding of Dagg, and of her return to the field of giraffe research, that is documented as part of The Woman Who Loves Giraffes. Prior to beginning work on the documentary, Reid had started scripting a narrative film based on Dagg’s life. It was only upon meeting Dagg and conversing with her that Reid discovered the famed zoologist was planning to return to Africa.

“I just thought, this is historic. We have to shoot it,” Reid said.

It was in Africa that Reid discovered Dagg as she likely had been back in the 1950s – adventurous, tenacious and full of “get-up-and-go” attitude.

“I interviewed her in the Pearson Airport before we left. To see her a couple days later in Africa, in a pop-top vehicle, with the wind in her hair, just glowing and watching giraffes… she just came alive,” Reid said. “It was like she was a kid again. It was just amazing.”

Utilizing interview and both archival and present-day footage, Reid assembles an affecting and moving portrait of Dagg and of the animal that has captivated her rousing, unstoppable spirit.

“I want to be moved when I watch a film, and (The Woman Who Loves Giraffes) moves people,” Reid said. “So I made the film because it’s exactly the type of film I would want to see. So I hope others continue to be drawn to it as well.”

The Woman Who Loves Giraffes will play across Canada in January. For showtimes, click here.

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2018 in Canadian film and TV: 10 of our favourite picks this year

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(From left to right) Baroness von Sketch Show, Letter from Masanjia, Knuckleball, Wynonna Earp and The Go-Getters all made the list of our 10 favourite TV and film picks from 2018.
(From left to right) Baroness von Sketch Show, Letter from Masanjia, Knuckleball, Wynonna Earp and The Go-Getters all made the list of our 10 favourite TV and film picks from 2018.

If you’ll humour me in first-person, for a moment: when I started The Mutt back in May of this year, I had a passing wonder whether there would be enough interesting Canadian film and television to fill a full content calendar. That concern was quickly dashed – our small team of writers didn’t have time to cover everything! (PS: writers, send me your pitches!)

What’s interesting to me about the Canadian film and television market is the allowance it provides for originality. While box office is important (as the good folks at First Weekend Club will tell you) few production teams plot out their features with an adherence to investors as their primary guiding principle.

That makes writing about the Canadian film scene all the more interesting, given the fact that each production usually has a passionate voice behind it or an easy hook to guide the story.

With 2018 wrapping up, we’ve chosen 10 of these stories featured on The Mutt in the past year that we found to be emblematic of this spirit, as well as some of our favourite Canadian film and TV of the year.

Letter from Masanjia

Dir: Leon Lee

Letter from Masanjia follows Sun Yi, a man who had been held as a political prisoner in Masanjia, a notorious labour camp. Above, he holds the letter that provoked a firestorm of coverage after a Oregon resident found it included with Halloween decorations purchased at KMart. Canadian film and TV news. Photo courtesy Flying Cloud Productions.

Letter from Masanjia follows Sun Yi, a man who had been held as a political prisoner in Masanjia, a notorious labour camp. Above, he holds the letter that provoked a firestorm of coverage after a Oregon resident found it included with Halloween decorations purchased at KMart. Photo courtesy Flying Cloud Productions.

The subject of this documentary traces back to 2012, when an Oregon resident shopping in Kmart discovered a desperate letter from a political prisoner in China. Letter from Masanjia, directed by Leon Lee, follows this letter back to China, uncovering the harrowing state of labour camps in the country. The doc was one of 166 submitted for consideration at the 91st Academy Awards and would wholly deserve a nod.

Read our story on Letter from Masanjia here.

Letter from Masanjia is now available on VOD.

Mr. D Season 8

CBC

The final episode of Mr. D airs Dec. 18 on CBC. The Mutt - Canadian film and TV news. Photo courtesy CBC

The final episode of Mr. D aired Dec. 18 on CBC. Photo courtesy CBC

CBC’s beloved workplace sitcom about an ill-equipped and bumbling high school teacher came to an end as the show’s series finale aired Dec. 20. Season 8 of the show saw Gerry Duncan (Gerry Dee) start a new life in Japan, take over as principal at Xavier and send the graduating students off with the perfect parting gifts. We’ll miss the show – no one plays bumbling idiot as riotously as Dee.

Read our interview with Gerry Dee here.

The complete series of Mr. D is now available to watch on CBC.

WALL

Dir: Cam Christiansen

WALL boasts a distinct visual style, something director Cam Christiansen said he wanted to emphasize to create a sense of authorship. The Mutt - Canadian film and TV news. Photo courtesy National Film Board of Canada

WALL boasts a distinct visual style, something director Cam Christiansen said he wanted to emphasize to create a sense of authorship. Photo courtesy National Film Board of Canada

From award-winning director Cam Christiansen and starring British playwright David Hare, the fascinating WALL examines both the physical and cultural barriers separating the Israeli and Palestinian residents of the Israeli West Bank. The film boasts a distinct visual style partly inspired by graphic novels and one that Christiansen said he chose to emphasize a sense of authorship.

Read our story on WALL here.

More information on WALL is available via the National Film Board website.

Knuckleball

Dir: Michael Peterson

Knuckleball, directed by Michael Peterson, is described as a mix of Home Alone and The Shining. The Mutt – Canadian film and TV news. Photo courtesy GAT PR

Mix Home Alone with The Shining and you’re getting close to understanding the premise behind Knuckleball, a gritty and pulse-pounding thriller from director Michael Peterson. Peterson draws engaging performances from Michael Ironside and Luca Villacis perfectly suited for this lively and taut feature.

Read our interview with Peterson here.

Knuckleball is now available on iTunes and VOD. For more information, click here.

Baroness von Sketch Show

CBC

Before co-creating and starring on Baroness von Sketch Show, Aurora Browne co-starred on Comedy Inc. and was part of Toronto's Second City troupe. The Mutt - Canadian film and TV news. Photo courtesy Canadian Broadcasting Corporation

Before co-creating and starring on Baroness von Sketch Show, Aurora Browne co-starred on Comedy Inc. and was part of Toronto’s Second City troupe. Photo courtesy Canadian Broadcasting Corporation

Picture yourself riding your bicycle on the way to work. As you’re pedaling, you see someone you vaguely know, but not enough to stop-and-chat. Instead of stopping, you awkwardly yell to them, “Hello!  …I have to keep going.” For Baroness von Sketch Show writer Aurora Browne, turning those painfully awkward moments into riotous sketches have propelled her career on what has become one of the CBC’s most reliably entertaining shows.

Read our interview with Baroness von Sketch Show’s Aurora Browne here.

The third season of the Baroness von Sketch Show is available to watch on CBC.

The Go-Getters

Dir: Jeremy Lalonde

Directed by Jeremy Lalonde (How To Plan An Orgy In A Small Town), The Go-Getters is a dark comedy starring Aaron Abrams and Tommie-Amber Pirie as a hooker and a drunk trying to claw their way back from rock bottom. The Mutt - Canadian film and TV news. Photo courtesy Northern Banner Releasing.

Directed by Jeremy Lalonde (How To Plan An Orgy In A Small Town), The Go-Getters is a dark comedy starring Aaron Abrams and Tommie-Amber Pirie as a hooker and a drunk trying to claw their way back from rock bottom. Photo courtesy Northern Banner Releasing.

In the intro, I wrote about how one of the best parts of covering Canadian film is being able to watch films where directors take big risks and play to underground tastes. You’d be hard-pressed to find a better example of this than in Jeremy Lalonde’s The Go-Getters, a gloriously dark and vulgar journey starring a deadbeat drunk and a junkie hooker. Just in time for the holidays!

Read our interview with Lalonde here.

The Go-Getters is currently playing in select theatres and launched on VOD on Christmas Day.

VIFF’s Future//Present program

Shot in modern-day Bosnia and Herzegovina, director Igor Drljača's The Stone Speakers is set to play as part of the Vancouver International Film Festival's 2018 Future//Present series. The Mutt - Canadian film and TV news. Photo courtesy Timelapse Pictures

Shot in modern-day Bosnia and Herzegovina, director Igor Drljača’s The Stone Speakers played as part of the Vancouver International Film Festival’s 2018 Future//Present series. Photo courtesy Timelapse Pictures

Among festival programs we always keep on our radar each year is the Vancouver International Film Festival’s Future//Present program. Our writer Brandon Wall-Fudge dove into the lineup at the 2018 festival, which showcased some of the best examples of those films redefining what Canadian film can be, including Spice It Up, M/M and Mangoshake.

Read the feature here.

The Vancouver International Film Festival returns in 2019.

Slave to the Grind

Dir: Doug Brown

Slave to the Grind is a documentary focused on grindcore. The Mutt - Canadian film and TV news.

Slave to the Grind is a feature-length documentary focused on the grindcore genre.

Napalm Death, Carcass, Pig Destroyer… maybe not household names to the average music fan, but among the principal players in the proudly abrasive genre of “grindcore.” Doug Brown’s feature-length documentary Slave to the Grind dives headfirst into the history of the genre and of its legions of disciples, many of which look nothing like you might expect.

Read the story here.

Slave to the Grind wrapped up a world tour in November 2018. Stay tuned to the film’s official Facebook page for updates.

Wynonna Earp Season 3

Space

Wynonna Earp airs Fridays at 9 p.m. E.T. on Space. The Mutt - Canadian film and TV news. Photo courtesy Bell Media

Wynonna Earp aired Fridays at 9 p.m. E.T. on Space. Photo courtesy Bell Media

To be perfectly frank, I personally am not caught up on Wynonna Earp, but after reading the weekly coverage from our resident “Earper,” Ghezal Amiri, it’s become clear to me that the show is among the most bonkers, odd and crazy good times on television. Amiri took us on a roller-coaster ride of her own emotions as she explored Purgatory along with Wynonna, Wayhaught, and one individual she calls Angry Vamp Doc, all the way to the season’s wildly emotional conclusion. Full speed ahead to Season 4!

Read Ghezal Amiri’s recap of the double-sized Season 3 finale.

Wynonna Earp returns on Space in 2019. 

Genèse (Genesis)

Dir: Philippe Lesage

Director Philippe Lesage's Genesis is the second autobiographical film from the Quebecois director, following 2015's Les démons. The Mutt - Canadian film and TV news. Photo courtesy Ixion Communications

Director Philippe Lesage’s Genesis is the second autobiographical film from the Quebecois director, following 2015’s Les démons. Photo courtesy Ixion Communications

Few directors are doing coming-of-age stories as effectively as Montreal-based director Philippe Lesage, whose second autobiographical feature, Genèse, is a total knockout. The film follows 2015’s The Demons, with characters from that film also appearing during Genèse. It’s a beautiful, intelligent and contemplative look at adolescence and young love, and one of the best Canadian films of the year.

Read our interview with Lesage here.

Genèse is now screening at festivals worldwide.

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