CANADIAN, EH? IT ‘BROADENS YOUR MIND’: OSCAR-NOMINATED CANUCKS FETED FOR THEIR GLOBAL PERSPECTIVE

Academy recognition 'such an amazing reward for all of our hard work,' says producer

Canadian nominees for the 2020 Academy Awards include, clockwise from top left, producer John Turner, director Sami Khan, sound engineer David Giammarco, writer-director Meryam Joobeur and writer-director Dean DeBlois. (CBC)

A curiosity about the world, an empathetic lens and an outsider’s take: Oscar-nominated Canadians are being recognized this week for the insight they bring to the wider film industry.

“Being Canadian, fundamentally it broadens your mind,” according to Dean DeBlois, who was honoured at a dinner Wednesday night at the official residence of the consul general of Canada in Los Angeles.

The writer-director from Gatineau, Que., is a three-time Oscar contender, in the running Sunday for the best animated feature trophy for How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World, the final instalment of his popular coming-of-age trilogy.

Growing up in his Aylmer neighborhood that had a mix of Pakistani, Portuguese and Italian families, “we were such a melting pot of cultures,” DeBlois recalled.

“There’s something about that melding that broadens your mind and makes you kind of a citizen of the world, which I think is really great for storytelling because you become curious about cultures all over the world.”

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