The LEO AWARDS recognize Outstanding Achievement in two categories - Individual and Group, Company or Association.
We honour those that have made a difference through their commitment to our industry.
Each year nominations are accepted and award recipients are determined by the
Members of the Motion Picture Arts & Sciences Foundation of British Columbia Board of Directors.
Group, Company or Association Award
Crazy8s Film Society
Crazy8s is an exciting 8 day filmmaking talent incubator that provides funding and support to emerging filmmakers to help them produce a short film. Founded 20 years ago by the BC Branch of the Directors Guild, Crazy8s is now run by the not-for profit Crazy8s Film Society.
To date, and with the generous support of the local film industry, Crazy8s has produced and supported 115 films which have screened globally at numerous film festivals and have taken home many prestigious awards. Having been trained through the Crazy8s program, many of the Crazy8s directors have gone on to direct and show-run many feature films and television series here in Canada and around the world.
Arthur Evrensel is a founding partner of Michael, Evrensel & Pawar LLP, a law firm where he practices entertainment law, negotiating and drafting financing and distribution arrangements for television and motion picture co-productions.
He graduated from McGill Law School in 1985 and moved to Vancouver in 1991 and is recognized as one of Canada’s leading entertainment lawyers.
Arthur has published numerous articles on entertainment law and lectured extensively at McGill University, UBC and the University of Victoria and he chaired numerous seminars and conferences relating to entertainment law in Canada, the United States, China and England.
He is one of the founders of the Motion Picture Production Industry Association, a founding Director of the Motion Picture Arts & Sciences Foundation of British Columbia and the LEO AWARDS, a past member of the Board of Directors of the Whistler Film Festival Society, a past Member of the Advisory Board of Vancouver International Film Festival/Trade Forum and a member of the Advisory Board which established the UBC Certificate in Entertainment Administration.
Born and raised in British Columbia, Danny Virtue Danny is a Producer, Director, Stunt Coordinator, Animal Trainer and mentor to many members of the BC production community and whose accomplishments are recognized globally.
In 1985 after Danny and Hollywood stuntman Dar Robinson formed Stunts Behind the Scenes he built the Virtue Studio Ranch, which became home to the multi‑award‑winning Neon Rider. With actor Winston Rekert, Danny co‑created and co‑executive produced 65 episodes of the landmark Canadian series. In 1993, Danny and Mr. Rekert were the recipients of the Peter Ustinov Humanitarian Award at the Banff International TV Festival.
Danny has been nominated for multiple Gemini Awards as Producer for Best Dramatic Series for Neon Rider, a Leo Award as Producer for Best Dramatic Series for Whistler, a Taurus World Stunt Award for his horse work on the feature film Pathfinder, and was the winner of the 2011 Leo Award for Best Stunt Coordination in a Feature Length Drama for Gunless.
He continues to add to his over 300 television and film credits and manages the old west location, Bordertown, as well as the Virtue Studio Ranch and the not-for-profit The Virtue Foundation, whose primary objective is to raise awareness for children who are physically, mentally or financially challenged.
The Stephen J. Cannell Friend of BC Award
Stephen J. Cannell passed away in 2010 but will long be remembered for his enormous contributions to the BC motion picture industry. He epitomized what we fondly refer to as a friend of the British Columbia Film & television industry. On occasion, we will present this award to an individual or association that have demonstrated these same ideals. The award is being presented this year to David Nutter.
David’s directing credits include the HBO mini-series Band Of Brothers (Emmy win for best director), Entourage (DGA Award nomination), The Pacific (DGA Award nomination), The Sopranos (Emmy nomination and DGA Award nomination), Without A Trace, ER and Nip/Tuck. More recently, he directed episodes of Showtime’s Shameless and HBO’s Game Of Thrones.
David is familiar to many in the BC film community directing episodes of 21 Jump Street, Booker and The X-Files. His ‘pilot directing’ credits here include Smallville, Supernatural, Dark Angel, Millennium and Arrow, which made its debut on CW in October 2012 and became the network’s highest rated new series.
The Motion Picture Arts & Sciences Foundation of British Columbia in association with the Director’s Guild of Canada British Columbia District Council is proud to present the inaugural Stephen J. Cannell Friend of BC Award to David Nutter.
Group, Company, or Association Award
Fifty years ago 18 BC theatre and freelance film technicians formed IATSE Local 891. It’s unlikely that those pioneering individuals had any idea how large and successful their infant Local would eventually become.
Five decades later, that group has expanded to over 5,000 members in 23 departments, each representing different pre and post-production crafts. From just one show filmed in 1962, the Union now averages 50 productions each year and since 1962 has helped create over 1300 movies and television productions.
Local 891 believes that professional crews equal professional results and for this reason invests in its members and in the industry in several ways. The Union supports a wide range of training for members to upgrade the skills that they offer productions as well as maintaining a strong commitment to safety in the workplace through safety-focused training. Every year, Local 891 members are involved in various awards programs. At this year’s LEO AWARDS, 36 members have been nominated in 24 categories.
IATSE Local 891 is proud to have contributed to the building of British Columbia’s reputation as being one of the best places in the world to make quality film and television and looks forward to crewing many more productions in the decades to come.
Neal G. Clarance
Neal has extensive experience in the film, digital media, recording and theatre segments of the entertainment industry. He has assisted Entertainment companies in a broad range of accounting, tax, financial and business advisory services including, the preparation of business plans, film library and record library valuations, loan applications, financing proposals and in raising debt and equity financing both privately and publicly. Neal has also assisted in the financial structuring and packaging of feature films, animated productions, television series, movies and documentaries, and advising on utilizing Government incentives, including tax credits and in the structuring of co-productions and co-ventures.
Neal has authored articles on topics ranging from preparing business plans to financing strategies for the Entertainment industry. He has participated as a speaker in many seminars and presentations and is regularly interviewed and quoted by media and industry publications dealing with financing issues in the entertainment industry. He has authored several studies and reports on the entertainment industry for government and other interest groups including “Opportunities for Film and Video Production and Investment in British Columbia” and “An Analysis of Existing Studio Space and Related Services and the Needs of an Expanding Industry” for the B.C. Provincial Government.
Neal has also participated in several government sponsored trade missions on behalf of The Canadian Film Industry. He is a charter member and Director of the Motion Picture Production Industry Association of B.C., a Director and Treasurer of the Whistler International Film Festival, a Director of the Canadian Film Centre and a Director of the International Financial Centre.
Jacob Rupp launched his career almost forty years ago. Originally from North Vancouver, he started performing stunts in live stage shows when he was in Grade 11, and continued on into the movie business when it was in its infancy in British Columbia in the early 1970's. He has since become one of the most accomplished and well-respected Stunt Coordinators in Canada.
Jacob's credits range from groundbreaking British Columbia television series including The Beachcombers, Neon Rider and Danger Bay to just about every big project that rolled through the city of Vancouver. The X Files, MacGyver, Stingray, 21 Jump Street, Wiseguy, Highlander, The Outer Limits and Supernatural are only some of the television shows that he has coordinated or performed in.
In the feature world, Jacob was one of the most sought after Stunt Coordinators in Western Canada, working at the helm of such films as Cool Runnings, The Sixth Man, Deep Rising, Lake Placid, Reindeer Games, Scary Movie 3 & 4, X2: X Men United, Catwoman and Fantastic Four. Jacob has been the Stunt Coordinator on the hit Television series Smallville for the past 4 seasons and is currently shooting the 8th season of the show.
Brad Wright & Robert C. Cooper
Brad Wright and Robert Cooper never anticipated that Stargate SG-1 would be broadcast in over 120 countries around the world or, that after 10 seasons and 214 episodes, become the longest continuous running science fiction series of all time. They went on to create the hit spinoff series Stargate Atlantis, which recently concluded its fifth and final season and are currently in production with the latest in the Stargate franchise, Stargate Universe; starring Robert Carlyle. SGU will launch in the fall of 2009.
Brad served as co-executive producer and writer for the Cable Ace Award-winning series The Outer Limits. He has also written for several television series, including Forever Knight, Highlander, Mom P.I., The Black Stallion and Neon Rider, which he also co-produced, and in 2007 was honored with the inaugural Showrunner Award for his work on Stargate SG-1 and Stargate Atlantis at the 11th Annual Canadian Screenwriting Awards.
Robert began working in television as a story editor on the series PSI Factor. His work has been nominated for several awards for writing both television and feature films including two Hugo award nominations. His produced work includes the screenplay for The Impossible Elephant, a family film for Edge Entertainment, and an adaptation of the book Best Actress that was produced by E! Entertainment Television.
The education pointed to science, the passion lead to music and movies. It was 37 years ago when rolling film for a student comedy, the future became clear. Warren went on to making documentaries for the Ministry of Education and CBC schools telecasts which laid some of the foundation for the Knowledge Network. His scope of experience expanded current affairs and variety television; sports and music videos, commercials, television movies, series and feature films.
He moved into production management and line producing through the 80’s and 90’s and has been a member of the production team of over sixty projects including thirty feature films, twenty movies of the week, TV pilots and series – including four Oscar nominated feature films and three Emmy nominated television movies. In September of 2003 Warren was awarded an Emmy by the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences for the Turner Network Television production ‘Door To Door’, which won as the Outstanding Made for Television Movie for 2002. Warren also received a Christopher Award for production that attained the highest values in human spirit.
He continues to devote time to support the development of the industry in British Columbia and its place in the world market place. He is a member of the Directors Guild of Canada and has served on the board of the BC District Council for several years and continues to serve today. He is also a member of the Directors Guild of America, The Academy of Television Arts and Sciences and the Motion Picture Production Industry Association of BC (MPPIA).
Terry David Mulligan
Terry was raised in North Vancouver and was a Mountie in Alberta from 1960 – 1964. He developed a life-long love of rock 'n roll, film, and television and spent the next two decades as a radio DJ and host of CBC's first music video program – Good Rockin' Tonight. He joined the MuchMusic team in 1985 as a segment producer and the host of CityTV's MT-Movie Television. He's appeared in countless feature films including The Accused, Look Who's Talking Two, McCabe and Mrs. Miller, The X-Files, Fantastic Four and is currently shooting a cheeky little wine show for CHUM called Hollywood and Vines with co-host and co-producer Jason Priestley.
Terry is a passionate supporter of local film & television and has taken every opportunity afforded him to champion those that make it. He was inducted into the BC Entertainment Hall of Fame in 2004 and his star is part of the sidewalk outside the front doors of the Commodore Ballroom in Vancouver.
Group, Company or Association Award
Insight Film Studios
Over the past five years Insight Film Studios has grown from six employees to over 100 full-time staff supported by 300 to 400 production crew working year round — and is on pace to exceed $170 million in production revenue in 2007. Playback magazine has named Insight the second largest production company in Canada ranking them behind only Alliance Atlantis.
In 2006, Insight produced 28 movies for television, five feature films, two dramatic series, one reality series, and one documentary series, and was last year’s recipient of the BC Government Export Award for the entertainment sector. The company's feature films – including When a Man Falls in the Forest, Numb, and Battle in Seattle– have premiered at festivals in Berlin, Tribecca, and Cannes.
Often called the 'Queen of Independent Film', Babz Chula is one of Canada’s most accomplished, versatile, and daring actors – a veritable life-force in Vancouver’s acting community. She has received multiple awards and honours and as an ardent supporter of the independent film scene, she has contributed countless volunteer hours to many causes including The Starry Nights Aids Benefit, Burnaby Youth Custody Facility, and The Centre for Integrated Healing.
Babz was born Barbara Zuckerman and was raised in the working-class neighborhood of Jamaica, New York. She grew up in that wonderful time of peace and love and on the strength of her voice she carved out a career as a folk singer. But the West Coast counterculture was a strong magnet and she eventually relocated to California. Later she would move to the Kootenays in BC and later still, in the early 1980's, hoping to further her acting and singing career, Babz moved again – this time to Vancouver.
More than 20 years later, Babz Chula has become one of Vancouver's most experienced and sought-after actors. She is cast in everything from heart-wrenching dramas to absurdist theatre to light comedy. She can play, with equal measure, characters ranging from frumpy mothers to vamps. She has long been a strong supporter of Canadian independent feature film production and early in her acting career appeared in what has become a Canadian classic, 1985's My American Cousin. Babz has also put her considerable talent into two of Bruce Sweeney's award-winning features: Live Bait in 1995 and Dirty, released in 1998.
She won a Leo Award in 1996 for her work in Robert Randall's short film The Love Charm, a Genie Award for her work in Peg Campbell's short film In Search of the Last Good Man and was awarded a Gemini Award in 2001 for her work on the series These Arms of Mine.
In 1995, Vancouver Women in Film and Video honoured her with its first annual Artistic Achievement Award for her support of the local film industry.
Group, Company or Association Award
The Motion Picture Production Industry Association
The Motion Picture Production Industry Association of British Columbia (MPPIA), is a non-profit society established in April 2002 to represent the collective interests of British Columbia's film, television and commercial production industry.
The Association, which brings together a broad spectrum of industry stakeholders, is committed to speaking with one voice on issues of common concern and working jointly to strengthen the industry's competitiveness on the world stage.
By bringing together key stakeholders who share this vision, MPPIA is working to develop a stronger profile and future for the film, television and commercial production industry in this province.
The LEO AWARDS recognize Bob Scarabelli as our Individual Outstanding Achievement Award winner for 2005. Bob was always an industry builder and consistently a LEO AWARDS nominee since our inception seven years ago. However, humble in spirit, Bob did not wear the mantle of honour easily — he much rather preferred to bestow it on others.
Bob was a champion and friend of many individuals in the film and television industry, giving many their first breaks. He had the rare quality of recognizing emerging talent — and he nurtured it. It was this quality which made Bob unique amongst his peers. He saw the future, in clear and present terms.
Bob Scarabelli was a success in his many ventures; Rainmaker is a testament to his talent as a business leader. The LEO AWARDS recognize Bob, however, for a much more extraordinary virtue — his deep regard for humanity and integrity, which touched us all. He believed in people’s ability to grow and supported them as artists. He was the rainmaker...
His passing has left a void in our community that will be felt for many years to come. In the same spirit of celebration that he lived his life, the LEO AWARDS posthumously recognize Bob Scarabelli with our 2005 Individual Outstanding Achievement Award.
Group, Company or Association Award
The British Columbia Film Commission
Created in 1978, the BC Film Commission promotes British Columbia as a motion picture destination and a world-class production centre to the international film and television industry. A branch of the provincial government, the BC Film Commission maintains an on-line registration system for all productions planning to do business in British Columbia.
Offering assistance in accessing every competitive advantage to help complete production on time and on budget, they offer a full range of services for film producers and production companies interested in what our Province has to offer, including production services, scouting and surveys, a photo library of locations throughout the Province, and community services.
The Community Affairs office at the BC Film Commission has been instrumental in working proactively with the filming community, residential and business owners and government agencies to ensure BC remains a supportive, film-friendly location centre.
John Juliani was a distinguished artist who spent much of his career nurturing and promoting the work of others. As an actor, director, producer, writer and educator, he was equally at home in theatre, film, or television.
A Past President of the Directors Guild of Canada, he was a decade-long Chair of the British Columbia District Council of the of DCG, and more recently, he served as President of the Union of British Columbia Performers.
John worked tirelessly in promoting film and television disciplines and left an enormous influence in many cultural institutions throughout British Columbia and across Canada. His efforts in community resource and development led to the creation of this event, the LEO AWARDS. Seven years ago, when a small group of us determined that an awards program for British Columbia was not only relevant, but essential to our long-term health, John joined us and served this organization as a founding Director.
His passing last summer has left a void in our community which will be felt for many years to come. In the same spirit of celebration that he lived his life, we posthumously recognize John Juliani with our 2004 LEO AWARD for Individual Outstanding Achievement.
Group, Company or Association Award
The Union of British Columbia Performers
Founded in 1990, the Union of British Columbia Performers is dedicated to protecting the rights of performers to fair remuneration and a fundamental respect for their craft.
With over 5000 members, the UBCP has made a significant contribution to the film and television industry, and has established itself on the national stage representing the interests of British Columbia.
The UBCP supports many community efforts including the Waiver Program, which accommodates performers who wish to work on projects with modest budgets, to the Performing Arts Lodge, providing quality affordable housing and support for seniors in the performing arts. The UBCP sponsors film festivals, schools, and awards programs in its quest to further the health and vibrancy of the film and television industry and by extension, opportunities for its members.
Whether creating a dialogue class for performers, publishing industry information, or simply providing a forum for the exchange of ideas, the UBCP is reaching out and creating a supportive and substantive foundation for all its members.
Shelley Gillen has been an active supporter of Canadian filmmakers for more than 15 years. She has a particular interest in launching first time feature directors and is a firm believer that each new wave of talented filmmakers only comes about when people in positions of power take chances.
As Head of Creative Affairs for Movie Central since 1994, Shelley is responsible for the Western Pay Service’s extensive and Canada-wide development and pre-licensing activities. This includes evaluation of all submissions, selection of both film and television projects and creative supervision of selected projects through production. In addition to providing Movie Central support, Shelley often takes an active role in trying to help producers put together the other funding partners to help bring their projects to the screen.
Prior to moving to Vancouver in 1994 to work in broadcast, Shelley wrote screenplays and worked as an associate producer and story editor on a number of successful Canadian features including Clearcut, Bordertown Café, and Beautiful Dreamers. She was Head of Development at Cinexus/Famous Players Films for three years during the late 1980s and worked on numerous other projects that regrettably never saw the light of day.
Shelley’s commitment and passion in developing an emerging class of British Columbia writers, producers, and directors has proven to benefit scores of films and filmmakers.
Group, Company or Association Award
The British Columbia Council of Film Unions
The British Columbia Council of Film Unions came into existence by order of the Labour Relations Board on June 6, 1996. The founding members of the Council are IATSE Local 891, IATSE Local 669, and Teamsters Local 155. The Council and their member unions have established agreements with over 80% of all film production ever done in British Columbia.
The Council provides film-makers a context of rules that allow production to proceed with a minimum amount of disruption, and to work jointly to fulfill the artistic visions of film and television artists.
Among the Council’s stated goals are to secure and maintain industrial peace and promote conditions favourable to the negotiation of collective agreements and the settlement of disputes and to co-ordinate and rationalise the negotiation of collective agreements within the film industry.
The Council also acts as a resource for film-makers, address health and safety issues, advise all levels of government regarding policy that affects film production in the province, set long-term goals in unison with industry partners, and operate as a promotional vehicle.
Born in Brooklyn, New York, Crawford Hawkins was educated at the New York University School of Commerce and the University of St. Joseph in Moncton, New Brunswick. He began his career as an apprentice film editor, quickly advancing to film editor, director and television production executive, working with many advertising agencies and commercial houses including Young & Rubicam West, in Los Angeles, and MPO Videotronics Inc., in New York – then the largest commercial production company in North America.
As the former President of Tegra Industries Inc. (now known as Command Post/Toybox West), he was directly responsible for its operating divisions, Alpha Cine Service, a motion picture laboratory, and Post Haste Video.
Active in local production since 1988, he freelanced as a motion picture and television production and post-production executive for Twentieth Century Fox Television, Mandalay Television, Hallmark Entertainment, Cannell Films Ltd., Alliance Atlantis, and The Jim Henson Company among others. His extensive production credits include the films Alive, Summer of the Monkeys, The Impossible Elephant, Now and Forever, and the television programs Up River, Medusa’s Child, Neon Rider, The Adventures of the Black Stallion, Lonesome Dove – The Series, The X-Files, Cold Squad, and The Fearing Mind.
His commitment to our community is evidenced through terms of service as Vice President and Chair of the British Columbia Motion Picture Association, a member of the Premier’s Economic Advisory Council, Chair of the Vancouver International Film Festival, and a Director of the Banff International Television Festival. Currently he is the Managing Director and Business Agent of the BC District Council of the Directors Guild of Canada.
Group, Company or Association Award
Women In Film & Video Vancouver
Founded in 1989 by Peggy Thompson, Sharon McGowan and Barbara Janes, Women in Film & Video Vancouver (WIFVV) has had an illustrious history and continues to make a significant impact on British Columbia’s film and television industry. From its initial mandate of highlighting women in the industry and providing them with professional development, WIFFV continues to evolve as stated in its mission: Women in Film & Video Vancouver is a non-profit society of professional women founded to support, advance, promote and celebrate the professional development and achievements of women involved in the British Columbia film, video and television industry.
Over the years, WIFVV has been active in organizing and producing events, seminar programs, and information exchanges for its membership including the Producer’s Workshop, the Director’s Workshop and Momentum series, the Producer’s Workbook (now in its third printing), the annual Summer Shorts screenings, Flash Forward, the annual Spotlight Awards, and the ever-popular Martini Madness socials.
As a member of the international organization Women in Film and Television, WIFVV and its 650 members is one of 40 such groups that altogether forms a worldwide affiliated membership of over 10,000 people.
Leaving behind a teaching position in Kelowna in 1976, Dianne Neufeld moved to Vancouver and began knocking on broadcast doors looking for an opportunity to showcase her skills and talent. Her new career began with BCTV, first at the News Hour, and soon after advancing to positions in entertainment, talk, and variety programming. It was here that she developed relationships with a community of performers, writers and filmmakers - a community she would help to transform into an industry.
After her successful venture into television she turned her sights to film, working in locations, script supervision and eventually production management. Joining the Directors Guild of Canada she became aware of just how small the local industry was -approximately one hundred and fifty members - and how big a need there was to grow it.
Her enthusiasm and dedication in promoting British Columbia as a production center landed her the position of Film Commissioner - a post she held for twelve years. During that time her department created the marketing campaigns which brought the projects... which trained the crews... who built an industry. At the end of her term the number of people who claimed full-time employment in film and television stood at over twenty-five thousand.
Honored with a Women of Distinction Award, a John Thomas Award, and a Shavick Heritage Award, she exemplifies the spirit which continues to fuel the growth of an industry which today generates over a billion dollars of economic activity.
Group, Company or Association Award
CBC Television - British Columbia
From the day it began operations in December of 1953, CBC Television - British Columbia has built its foundation on showcasing the work of BC writers, performers, producers, and directors; the most famous collaboration of which, The Beachcombers, won the hearts of audiences throughout Canada and around the world for twenty seasons. More remarkable is how many of the talented and accomplished individuals currently at work in our community look back to their humble beginnings at the 'Plant' on Hamilton Street.
Recently the unofficial mantra has been 'See BC on CBC' and with various independent partners the regional office has brought us the award winning series DaVinci's Inquest, Nothing Too Good for a Cowboy, and These arms of Mine, films such as Marine Life and Scorn, and documentary specials including Through a Blue Lens and the Oscar nominated Broadcast Tapes of Dr. Peter.
In October of 2000 CBC Television - British Columbia launched Canada Now, a nightly half-hour national news program anchored by Ian Hanomansing - broadcast live across five time zones. Combined with a half-hour of local news anchored by Gloria Macarenko, Canada Now has proven its journalistic mettle. Honored with a number of awards, including a Gold Medal from the 2001 The New York Festivals, and a nomination this evening for a Best News Package LEO AWARD, it is the only live national newscast in the country situated outside of Toronto.
Michael Francis has been synonymous with the growth and development of the cultural and arts community in British Columbia for more than two decades. His commitment to indigenous film and television has earned him the respect of the entire production community.
He is Chair of the Vancouver International Film Festival, one of North America's most popular forums and British Columbia Film, the provincial development and production funding agency. His Vision in guiding there organizations has propelled them to be leaders in their fields and offers a testament to local initiative.
He has served as a Director on the Board of Western International Communications and in March of this year was appointed Chair of the BC Ferries Corporation. The Co-Chair of the Provincial Advisory Committee on the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation Agency, he Chaired the BC Trade Development Corporation and Science World. His tireless service has earned him the affectionate title 'Chairman of Everything'.
His professional career has always been influenced by the arts, in particular film and in 1993 his contribution to British Columbia culture was recognized by a Canada 125 Medal, granted by the Government of Canada.
Group, Company or Association Award
The Pacific Centre of the National Film Board
Founded in 1965, the Pacific Centre Studio was the first regional office opened by the National Film Board. The Centre has always emphasized developing local talent and producing films concerned with social issues.
The Centre regularly co-produces with the private sector, including Mina Shum's Double Happiness, which launched the 1994 Toronto International Film Festival and was honoured at Berlin for Best First Feature.
Responsible for nurturing filmmakers from Daryl Duke to Tony Papa, the Centre has consistently shown leadership in recognizing and developing talent. Since its inception, the National Film Board has been honored with awards at home and abroad, including the Canadian Academy of Cinema and Television Genie and Gemini Awards and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Oscar Awards.. We are proud to recognize the Pacific Centre Studio for it's contribution in encouraging and promoting indigenous film and television production in British Columbia.
Daryl Duke's work has been seen around the world in many films and television programs. His mini-series The Thorn Birds ranked as one of the most watched television programs ever broadcast in North America when it was first telecast in 1983. In 1986 he directed the theatrical release TAI_PAN, the first western feature to be shot in the People's Republic of China.
A graduate of the University of British Columbia he began his career as a film editor and director for the National Film Board of Canada. He went on to produce the first programming from CBUT, the CBC's Vancouver Station, when the Corporation began regional television service on the West Coast.
He has been honoured with an Emmy Award for his direction of The Day The Lion Died and a Christopher Award for producing and directing I Heard The Owl Call My Name. He earned a National Society of Film Critics Award for his feature film Payday, which was an official entry into the Cannes Film Festival's Directors Fortnight, and a Genie Award for his direction of the feature film The Silent Partner.
He continues to serve his community as a member of the Board of Directors of BC Film and as a member of the Steering Committee of The Friends of Canadian Broadcasting. He has influenced a generation of filmmakers through his integrity and unswerving commitment to excellence.
Group, Company or Association Award
British Columbia Film
Founded in September 1987, the blossoming motion picture industry in BC welcomed an investment in its future with the creation of British Columbia Film. Originally supported by a three-year $10 million dollar commitment from the provincial government, the mandate of the new film development agency was to provide arm's length funding of BC owned and controlled films and television projects.
With a set of programs in place to provide loans and equity for development and production, the fund began injecting financial resources into the community. Since it's inception the agency has invested nearly $50 million dollars in the BC companies.
The agency has also provided over 200 bursaries to assist BC residents to participate at the Canadian Film Centre in Toronto. As well British Columbia Film continually supports the endeavours of organizations such as Cineworks, Women in Film and Praxis.
Over the years British Columbia Film has continually exhibited a dedicated support to writers, producers and directors, encouraging a strong and vibrant indigenous production community.