Toronto, ON – The Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television today announced the creation of a new Apprenticeship Program for female directors, as part of the organization’s year-round initiatives addressing pertinent issues within the film, television, and digital media sectors. This initiative will receive major support from The RBC Emerging Artists Project and Canada Media Fund (CMF). The Apprenticeship Program will assist early and mid-career female directors in film, television or digital media to identify and achieve their career and project goals, hone their directing skills, and develop a network of allies to springboard the advancement of their work.
“The Academy believes that gender equality in key creative positions shaping story-telling content, is an essential element of a vibrant and profitable media industry,” said Beth Janson, CEO of the Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television. “Homogeneity on ours screens is a missed opportunity to capitalize on the diverse experiences of Canadians. It is this belief that motivates the Academy to develop its own programming to address this industry-wide issue.”
“The CMF is delighted to support this program. Supporting third-party initiatives such as this one is part of the CMF’s broader strategy to increase gender balance in Canada’s screen-based industries,” stated Valerie Creighton, President and CEO, CMF. “We believe that the female talent and skill are out there. We only need to level the playing field, so new opportunities for women can be triggered. I’m certain this and other initiatives being implemented by organizations across our industry will trigger those opportunities.”
Participants will shadow a working director in their own region for six months, while also participating in bi-weekly working sessions with other participants, conducted via Google hangout. These hangouts will include guest speakers who will run working sessions on practical skills that are essential for every director to have in their toolbox. A small honorarium will be provided to the participants.
The Academy will hold an open call starting in May 2017 to recruit participants for the Apprenticeship Program, with the goal of ensuring diverse regional representation and with special attention paid to outreach among Canadian women who are members of typically underrepresented groups in the mainstream media industry, including Indigenous Canadians. Applicants will submit a Statement of Interest, and will be asked to include a sample of their work and a letter of recommendation from a colleague, mentor, or peer.
The Academy will convene a diverse, regionally representative Selection Committee of six established professionals from the industry. These six experts will select the inaugural cohort of participants. Once the six candidates have been selected, the Academy will work with each mentee to understand her goals and to pair each participant with a regionally appropriate mentor who is an established professional working in the film, television, or digital media sector.
In order to ensure a robust, rigorous programme that is truly national in scope, the Academy is building an advisory committee, which will include organization working to promote female directors from all regions. Women in View is the first organization on the committee. The Academy looks forward to engaging with other industry partners to support the program and enrich the experience of its participants
About the Academy | academy.ca
The Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television is a national, non-profit, professional association dedicated to the promotion, recognition and celebration of exceptional achievements in Canadian film, television and digital media. Unifying industry professionals across Canada, the Academy is a vital force representing all screen-based industries.
Royal Bank of Canada is Canada’s largest bank, and one of the largest banks in the world, based on market capitalization. We are one of North America’s leading diversified financial services companies, and provide personal and commercial banking, wealth management, insurance, investor services and capital markets products and services on a global basis. We have over 80,000 full- and part-time employees who serve more than 16 million personal, business, public sector and institutional clients through offices in Canada, the U.S. and 37 other countries. For more information, please visit rbc.com.
In 2016, we supported over 2,000 artists, investing over $4.2 million in 160 organizations in a wide range of art genres. Our support is focused on artists in the early stages of their careers through the RBC Emerging Artists Project. Cumulatively, over 7,000 artists are now part of our RBC Emerging Artists alumni.
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ABOUT THE CANADA MEDIA FUND
The Canada Media Fund (CMF) fosters, promotes, develops and finances the production of Canadian content and relevant applications for all audiovisual media platforms. The CMF guides Canadian content towards a competitive global environment through fostering industry innovation, rewarding success, enabling a diversity of voice and promoting access to content through industry and private sector partnerships. To learn more, please visit cmf-fmc.ca.