Telefilm Canada launches the second edition of the Featuring Aboriginal Stories Program

    MONTREAL, May 21 /CNW Telbec/ - Telefilm Canada, in partnership with the
Aboriginal Peoples Television Network (APTN), is launching the second edition
of its Featuring Aboriginal Stories Program. Aboriginal writers,
writer-directors and producers are thus invited to submit their first
application between now and June 29, 2009. Writers and producers who were
selected during the program's first year, in 2008, have until November 27,
2009 to submit an application for development assistance for the subsequent
stage of their project.
    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. During the program's first year, the
writers and producers of the 11 selected projects received development
funding, took part in a four-day immersion in Toronto, and benefited from
professional guidance based on their training needs. "Featuring Aboriginal
Stories Program enabled us to spread our wings," stated Rachel-Alouki Labbé of
Alouki Films, "and we now feel that we have staked our place in the world of
Canadian story-telling." Added Laura J. Milliken, President of Big Soul
Productions Inc., "The two-pronged approach involving industry mentorship and
project funding is what makes FASP a truly unique and invaluable opportunity
for Canadian Aboriginal producers, writers and directors. I am very thankful
for the opportunity to be a part of the program." Both Alouki Films and Big
Soul Productions Inc. benefited from the program in 2008.
    "We are confident that this program will help bring greater diversity to
our screens," stated Wayne Clarkson, Executive Director of Telefilm Canada,
"and that outstanding, untold stories will soon excite the imagination of all
    This initiative was developed in association with the APTN, which will
contribute $750,000 to the program over three years. "This initiative provides
an exceptional training opportunity for the Aboriginal Film Production
Community and APTN is extremely proud to be associated and to partner with
Telefilm in this tremendous program," said Jean LaRose, APTN's CEO.
    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 representatives in the marketplace. The program provides solid
support to Aboriginal writers and producers, at all stages of a film's
development. As such, participants whose project has been selected benefit
from a combination of training, professional development and personalized
mentorship activities, and also receive a development advance.

    Developing and promoting the Canadian audiovisual industry

    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 productions
that appeal to domestic and international audiences. The Corporation also
administers the funding programs of the Canada Feature Film Fund, the Canadian
Television Fund and the Canada New Media Fund.

    About APTN

    September 1, 2009 will mark 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. 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 a program schedule or for more information, please
contact APTN at 204-947-9331 Ext. 358 or toll free at 1-888-330-APTN (2786),
or visit the website at

    Complete program details, including submission conditions pertaining to
    projects in their first or second year, are available at

    Ce communiqué est également disponible en français.

For further information:

For further information: Téléfilm Canada (Médias francophones): Elise
Proulx, (450) 732-0788,; Telefilm Canada (Anglophone
media): Alejandra Sosa, (416) 973-6436 #2505, 1-800-463-4607,; APTN: Sylvia Kolopenuk, (204) 947-9331 #339,

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