One of the biggest showcases of Canadian film in the world, the Vancouver International Film Festival (VIFF) is set to return with the 2018 iteration of the festival Sept. 27 to Oct. 12, 2018. Along with its international programming, VIFF puts special care in selecting strong B.C.-based and Canadian work. The festival is a chance to get exposed to diverse stories and voices, according to VIFF executive director Jacqueline Dupuis.
“(Canadian film) presents the opportunity to tell really diverse stories that don’t necessarily have a specific theme or a specific identity. It’s a freedom to tell different types of stories. We’re seeing really unique voices and projects coming out of emerging filmmaking talent in Canada,” Dupuis said. “I think it’s a really interesting time for Canadian film and a really exciting time.”
The festival’s B.C. showcase, dubbed Sea to Sky, include’s Bruce Sweeney’s Kingsway, Vancouver Grizzlies love letter Finding Big Country and the first film produced in the Haida language, Edge of the Knife. Dupuis said the showcase includes a number of Indigenous features and allocates awards to chosen films in order to support the development of B.C. filmmakers.
“We’ve got such incredible talent here in British Columbia and in Canada,” Dupuis said. “We wanted to really highlight that and continue to grow and build their skills. B.C. has a really strong creative ecosystem because the creators have the opportunity to stay here in B.C. and work on some of the service production that happens here in the province, honing their skills while still developing their own projects.”
Though the festival has been screening Canadian film for years, Dupuis said this year’s lineup was another great chance for audiences to take in unique homegrown stories and perspective.
“If you haven’t seen a Canadian film before, come and see one and you’ll be pleasantly surprised. Especially in these times where we’re really focused on ensuring that female filmmakers have the tools and opportunities at their disposal to make great work and that Indigenous stories are made and shown,” she said. “We’re talking about real problems and real situations and real opportunities in the world. Film is meant to change hearts and minds. It’s a good time to watch any film, but it’s a great time to watch Canadian stories in terms of the history of our country.”
Included below are a list of a few of the Canadian films announced August 9 as part of the 2018 Vancouver International Film Festival:
Edge of the Knife
Dir: Helen Haig Brown and Gwaai Edenshaw
Finding Big Country
Dir: Kathleen S. Jayme
Dir: Bruce Sweeney
Dir: Zebulon Zang
This Mountain Life
Dir: Grant Baldwin
For full listings of the VIFF 2018 Canadian lineup, visit the Vancouver International Film Festival website. Stay tuned to The Mutt for previews of a number of films featured at this year’s festival.
Schitt’s Creek to conclude after next season
The popular CBC sitcom Schitt’s Creek will end at the conclusion of its sixth season, series co-creator and star Dan Levy announced March 21.
“We are so grateful to have been given the time and creative freedom to tell this story in its totality, concluding with a final chapter that we had envisioned from the very beginning,” Levy said in a statement. “It’s not lost on us what a rare privilege it is in this industry to get to decide when your show should take its final bow.”
Schitt’s Creek premiered on CBC in 2015, becoming one of the network’s most successful half-hour comedies ever. The show follows the fish-out-of-water Rose family, forced to assimilate into a small town after they lose their family fortune.
Though the show’s first season received mixed reviews, it grew in regard with both fans and critics over subsequent iterations. Schitt’s Creek’s fifth season, which premiered on January 8, 2019, scored a 100 per cent “Fresh” ranking on the review aggregate website Rotten Tomatoes.
The show is also among select company among Canadian sitcoms, drawing strong viewership in the United States and elsewhere thanks to distribution on Netflix and the American Pop network. Critics have reacted favourably to recent episodes, with TV Guide’s Megan Vick writing that each season of Schitt’s Creek has “gotten better and better.”
Read Levy’s full statement below.
To Our Dear Fans… pic.twitter.com/FIXjD3gbzA
— dan levy (@danjlevy) March 21, 2019
New episodes of Schitt’s Creek air Tuesday nights at 9/9:30 NT on CBC.
Watch the Oscar-nominated Canadian short “Animal Behaviour”
To get prepped for the 91st Academy Awards, the National Film Board of Canada (NFB) is offering Canadians the chance to check out Animal Behaviour, nominated tonight in the Best Animated Short Film category.
Animal Behaviour is a new short from Alison Snowden and David Fine, who previously won an Oscar in 1994 for Bob’s Birthday. The short is the 75th Oscar nomination for the NFB, and the first short film for Snowden and Fine since Bob’s Birthday. The 91st Oscars air tonight at 8 Eastern on ABC and CTV.
Watch Animal Behaviour below (expires tonight).
Next up on The Mutt: Wynonna Earp future in doubt as Season 4 delayed
Wynonna Earp future in doubt as Season 4 delayed
All of a sudden, Wynonna Earp is in Purgatory.
Earpers were stunned Thursday night when executive producer and showrunner Emily Andras posted (and subsequently deleted) a tweet suggesting that fans of the show may soon have to fight for it. Another tweet, posted shortly later, took a decidedly more straight-forward approach.
Don’t fuck with my family. 💕
— Emily Andras (@emtothea) February 21, 2019
Andras appeared to be responding to the news that funding for the fourth season of Wynonna Earp appeared to be on shaky ground, according to a report from The Hollywood Reporter. According to THR, financial challenges faced by IDW Entertainment have stalled production on Season 4, despite the company being contractually obligated to deliver the show to Syfy.
In response to the news, Earpers took to Twitter with the hashtag #FightForWynonna, which at the time of publication was one of the top Twitter trends in Canada. Though Season 4 has yet to be officially cancelled, IDW has yet to commit to a start date for the new season.
“IDW is committed to continuing to tell the Wynonna Earp story,” the company said in a statement posted to Twitter. “Much like the fans, we are passionate about not only the series, but the comics, the characters and the overall message that the Wynonna Earp franchise carries. We are in the process of working out the details for how the Wynonna story will continue and will share new details very soon.”
Our resident Earper, Ghezal Amiri, was a big fan of Season 3, writing that the show’s season finale, entitled “War Paint”, was a “wildly emotional conclusion.” Read her recap here.