Telefilm Canada and APTN announce 13 feature-film projects selected under the
Featuring Aboriginal Stories Program

MONTREAL, Aug. 19 /CNW Telbec/ - Telefilm Canada, in partnership with the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network (APTN), is delighted to announce that 13 projects have been selected under the 2010 edition of Featuring Aboriginal Stories Program (FASP). Twenty-one projects from all regions of the country were submitted for consideration.

Participants will benefit from a combination of training, professional development and personalized mentorship activities, and will receive a development advance.

Marie Clements of Frog Girl Films Productions Inc. participated in the program for the first time in 2009 with her dramatic feature Tombs. Marie is back this year to generate a third draft which will move her project one step closer to her ultimate goal - production.

"Being a part of the Featuring Aboriginal Stories Program was an invaluable experience in developing our story to its full potential, fusing what we know as storytellers with what we need to know to get the story to an audience," said the Vancouver-based, Metis-Dene writer.  "We understand the power of continued investment and are honoured to be a part of this again, not only for what it will mean as we move towards production, but for what it means to be part of the script's evolution on all levels."

Program creator and funder Telefilm Canada sees the quality of the selected projects as a reflection of the creativity and vitality of Aboriginal filmmakers across Canada.

"We are pleased to see the Featuring Aboriginal Stories Program providing support to both emerging filmmakers and experienced creators such as Marie," said Sheila de La Varende, Telefilm's Director of National and International Business Development. "Our goal is both to meet a real professional development need within aboriginal communities, and to see more aboriginal projects in production and on screens."

Program partner the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network (APTN) also sees the initiative as meeting an important creative demand.

"As a partner in this three-year initiative with Telefilm, we are thrilled to see that the quality of FASP projects has continued to increase with each new phase of the program," said Peter Strutt, APTN Director of Programming. "This speaks to the depth of talent and the passion for telling stories that exists within our Aboriginal communities."

2010 Featuring Aboriginal Stories Program participants

English-language projects
Tombs
British Columbia
Writer: Marie Clements
Production company: Frog Girl Films Productions Inc.
Producer(s): Marie Clements & Michelle St. John
Belcher Island Killings
Quebec
Writer: Jean-François Martel
Production company: 6710875 Canada inc. NISH MÉDIA
Producer(s): Jason Brennan & Carole Thibeault
Concrete Indian
Manitoba
Writer: Coleen Rajotte
Production company: Rajotte Productions Inc.
Producer(s): Coleen Rajotte
Endangered Hero
Alberta
Writer: Cara Mumford
Production company: N/A
Producer(s): N/A
Hidden Children (The)
Ontario
Writer: Tasha Hubbard
Production company: Big Soul Productions Inc.
Producer(s): Laura Milliken
Incredible 25th Year of
Mitzi Bearclaw (The)
Ontario
Writer: Shelley Niro
Production company: N/A
Producer(s): Shelley Niro
Lucky
Manitoba
Writer: Jim Compton
Production company: N/A
Producer(s): N/A
Mush Hole
British Columbia
Writer: Lisa Jackson
Production company: N/A
Producer(s): N/A
Shawnee's Place
Yukon
Writer: Dennis Allen
Production company: N/A
Producer(s): N/A
Wild Medicine
Ontario
Writer: Adam Garnet Jones
Production company: N/A
Producer(s): N/A
World of Trickster
British Columbia
Writer: Renae Morriseau
Production company: N/A
Producer(s): N/A
French-language projects
Au naturel
Quebec
Writer: Micheline Marchand, Daniel Marchildon
Production company: N/A
Producer(s): N/A
Kahnesatake, mon amour      
Quebec
Writer: Rachel Alouki Labbé
Production company: Entreprise Alouki Films Projeks inc.
Producer(s): Rachel Alouki Labbé

Launched in 2008, the Featuring Aboriginal Stories Program aims to encourage and support Aboriginal filmmakers to develop original script material that will be attractive to producers, financiers and other film industry decision-makers. The program provides solid support to Aboriginal writers and producers at all film-development stages. Again this year, Telefilm has mandated the National Screen Institute in Winnipeg with the delivery of the training component of this program.

This initiative solidly backs up Telefilm's commitment to allocate a total of $1.2 million over three years to set up a professional development program for Aboriginal filmmakers. The APTN is contributing $750,000 to the initiative over three years.

This is the third and final year for the Featuring Aboriginal Stories Program and Telefilm will review results this fall to determine how best to support the professional development of aboriginal filmmakers moving forward.

About Telefilm Canada
Telefilm Canada is a federal cultural agency dedicated to developing and promoting the Canadian audiovisual industry. Telefilm provides financial support to the private sector to create distinctively Canadian products that appeal to domestic and international audiences. Telefilm also administers the Canada Media Fund. Visit href="http://www.telefilm.gc.ca/">www.telefilm.gc.ca.

About APTN: 
September 1, 2009 marked the 10-year anniversary of the launch of the first national Aboriginal television network in the world with programming by, for and about Aboriginal Peoples to share with all Canadians and viewers around the world. APTN is available in approximately 10 million Canadian households and commercial establishments with cable, direct-to-home satellite (DTH), telco-delivered and fixed wireless television service providers. The network launched its high definition channel APTNHD in the spring of 2008. APTN does not receive government funding for operations but generates revenue through subscriber fees, advertising sales and strategic partnerships. APTN broadcasts programming with 56% offered in English, 16% in French and 28% in Aboriginal languages. For program schedule or for more information, please contact APTN at (204) 947-9331 or toll-free at 1-888-278-8862, or visit the website at www.aptn.ca.

SOURCE Telefilm Canada

For further information: For further information:

Telefilm Canada
Denise Arab
Director, Communications                 
514-283-0838, ext. 2099
arabd@telefilm.gc.ca
www.twitter.com/telefilm_canada
Aboriginal Peoples Television Network
Sylvia Munro-Smith
Manager of Communications
204-947-9331, ext. 339
ssmith@aptn.ca


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