Bell Media Announces Inaugural Award of Distinction at the Banff World Media Festival

- Previous fellows to be recognized with new Bell Media Fellow Award of Distinction -

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BANFF, AB, June 10, 2013 /CNW/ - Today, the Banff World Media Festival (BANFF), in collaboration with Bell Media, showcased and celebrated the inaugural winner of the Bell Media National Fellowship Award of Distinction. The prestigious Award's first winner is Craig David Wallace of Toronto, Ontario, who benefited from Bell Media's mentorship program in 2008. Bell Media National Fellowships are intended to encourage professional development in the television industry by enabling emerging creative talent including producers, writers, and directors.

The Award is determined by a jury of top level Bell Media executives and is presented to a previous Fellow that has demonstrated significant strides in their career as a result of the mentorship program. The Award will be presented today at the Rockies Award Luncheon by Phil King, President, CTV Programming and Sports, Bell Media.

"We are extremely pleased to add this Award component to the Fellowship program as it provides an important platform to showcase the many benefits of Canadian talent development," said King. "Congratulations to Craig, a truly accomplished winner, who clearly demonstrates great passion and embraced the opportunities the program provides. We're committed to be at the frontline of talent development in Canada."

"The Bell Media fellowship gave me the opportunity to meet the industry on a personal level, from broadcasters and producers to fellow creatives who were pitching our own shows," said Wallace. "Those initial introductions have grown into professional and creative relationships that have pushed my career farther than I would have ever believed five years ago."

Wallace is the co-creator and show runner of the critically acclaimed TODD & THE BOOK OF PURE EVIL, a highly creative and boundary-pushing show that aired for 26 episodes on Space, Comedy and Much in Canada as well as Fearnet in the U.S., 2x2 in Russia, SYFY in the U.K., SciFi in Austria, VIVA in Germany, and TNT7 in Scandinavia. The series garnered eight Gemini nominations and six Canadian Screen Award nominations. Wallace himself received a 2012 Writer's Guild of Canada Award for Best Writing in a Comedy Series, and was nominated for a Gemini Award, Canadian Screen Award, and Canadian Comedy Award. Currently, Wallace is an Executive Producer at Corvid Pictures.

As part of the $1.8 million Bell Media TV Skills Development Initiative, the Bell Media National Fellowship program is intended to encourage professional development in the television industry by enabling emerging creative talent - including producers, writers, and directors - to attend BANFF and benefit from the vast programming, mentorship, and pitching opportunities that the annual event has to offer.

As an annual program, successful applicants of the Bell Media National Fellowship mentorship program are invited to attend BANFF on a full-access pass and benefit from the extensive networking, pitching, and business-building opportunities. Finalists will also have the chance to meet with showrunners, agents, broadcasters, and funders from all of the leading broadcasters from North America and around the world.

About the Bell Media TV Skills Development Initiative
The $1.8 million Bell Media TV Skills Development Initiative is a suite of national training programs, exclusively funded by Bell Media, which ensure a comprehensive range of training for writers, producers, directors, and showrunners in the Canadian television industry at different stages of their careers. The Initiative supports the Bell Media Diverse Screenwriters Program (Writers Guild of Canada) for emerging and mid-career writers from diverse backgrounds who intern in a writing room of a Bell Media TV series; the Bell Media National Fellowship Program (Banff World Media Festival), which encourages professional development in the television industry by enabling emerging producers, writers, and directors to attend the festival and take part in mentorship activities; the Bell Media Primetime TV Program (Canadian Film Centre), which provides series development for TV writers; the Bell Media Producer Accelerator Lab, which provides immersive and experiential broadcast and production experience for emerging producers; the Bell Media Showrunner Bootcamp (Canadian Film Centre), which develops showrunner knowledge and management for TV writers; the Media Leadership Program (Women in Film and Television - Toronto), a biennial program designed for mid to senior-level women and men who want leading-edge academic knowledge and contemporary business and leadership skills required in the Canadian screen-based industry; the Business Management for Media Professionals Program (Women in Film and Television - Toronto), a certificate program essential for emerging media professionals who want to understand the business of film, television and interactive production; and Totally Television (National Screen Institute)*, which delivers hands-on series development for writers/producers.

About the Banff World Media Festival
The Banff World Media Festival is the world's largest and most important gathering of entertainment industry and digital media executives dedicated to media content production, broadcast and distribution within TV and digital media. Providing a platform for the evolving media industry to develop its creative and business objectives, Banff serves as the leading destination for co-production and co-venture partners and is an unparalleled destination for more than 2000 international decision-makers to meet, learn and do business. The Banff World Media Festival takes place June 9-12, 2013 at the Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel, Banff, Canada. For more information, visit:

About Bell Media
Bell Media is Canada's premier multimedia company with leading assets in television, radio and digital. With passion and an unrelenting commitment to excellence, Bell Media entertains, informs and inspires Canadians. Bell Media owns 28 conventional stations, including CTV, Canada's #1 television network, and owns and operates 30 specialty channels, including TSN, Canada's #1 specialty channel, and RDS, Canada's #1 French-language specialty channel. Bell Media also owns 33 radio stations, dozens of websites including the by Sympatico, and Dome Productions Inc. Bell Media is owned by BCE Inc. (TSX, NYSE: BCE), Canada's largest communications company. For more on Bell Media, please visit

SOURCE: Bell Media

For further information:

For media inquiries, contact: 
Matthew Almeida, Bell Media Communications Publicist, 416.384.2629 or
Rabya Khanan, Communications Coordinator, Achilles Media Ltd., .416.921.3171 ext. 240 or


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