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Canadian Actors and Auteurs


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This is a student presentation from a University of Calgary Performance in Film and Videogames class.

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Canadian Actors and Auteurs

  1. 1. CANADIAN ACTORS AND AUTEURS Sarah Yamamoto, Liora Fedorov, and Matt Sinclair
  2. 2. WEIRD SEX AND SNOWSHOES  Book (2001): Katherine Monk  Documentary (2004): Jill Sharpe  Explores Canadian identity within film culture and analyzes the distinction of Canadian movies from other cinemas
  3. 3. ALANIS OBOMSAWIN “I get very excited whenever I make a documentary. I love the form because I’m very concerned about educating people about what’s going on. So much history can be lost if no one tells the story so that’s what I do. I tell the stories”.
  4. 4. ALANIS OBOMSAWIN  Born in New Hampshire on August 31 1932, raised in Quebec  One of the most prolific Canadian filmmakers of Abenaki descent  Outstanding Canadian of the year in 1965  Lead an Aboriginal revolution of the arts through documentaries  In 1967, approached by National Film Board to be advisor on film about Aboriginals  Directed first film in 1971: Christmas at Moose Factory  Made over 16 movies
  5. 5. ERNEST SHIPMAN  A Canadian director who produced one of the most successful Canadian pictures of all time: Back to God’s Country (1919)  His main creative force: importance of women and the landscape in Canadian film.
  6. 6. CANADIAN FILM FOCUS  Main focus: the landscape  Increased American control over production – landscape continued to be central feature.  Landscape used in backdrops, generally serves as a counterpoint to the character.  Landscape and photography work together
  7. 7. BRUCE MCDONALD  Born on May 28, 1959 in Kingston, Ontario  Director and Producer  Won $25000 for best Canadian feature at 1989 Toronto International film festival  First Canadian film to show hipster chic style of Canada  Roadkill, Highway 61, Twitch City AAABDD9F145F5FA1
  8. 8. OPENING THE LENS  Peter Mettler – Picture of Light (1994)  Camera becomes a teacher all by itself  Travel far north to create high-art documentary and to capture the northern lights (aurora borealis)  Due to extreme weather conditions and equipment failure the documentary shifts to the subject of creating a film  “a film about a film”  “The movie is the landscape is the movie”
  9. 9. NEGATIVE THEORY  “Canadians show a marked preference for the negative” • Margaret Atwood, Survival  Defined by what we are not, more so than what we are  survival mechanism we’ve developed over time to distinguish ourselves from the monolithic American nation next door
  10. 10. CANADIAN ACTORS AT HOME AND IN HOLLYWOOD  Oftentimes, Canadian actors are only recognized once they have made it in Hollywood  It becomes difficult to distinguish Canadian actors from American actors
  12. 12. CANADIAN ACTORS TRIVIA 2. Which of the following movies was filmed in Canada? A. My Big Fat Greek Wedding (2002) B. Gladiator (2000) C. Skyfall (2012) D. Despicable Me (2010) 1. Which of the following movies was Ryan Gosling not featured in? A. The Notebook (2004) B. Drive (2011) C. Dear John (2010) D. Gangster Squad (2013)
  13. 13. DISCUSSION  Do you observe any differences between Canadian and American actors/directors?  Are Canadian actors/directors being assimilated into American film culture?  Why do you think Canadian films primary focus is on landscape and nature?
  14. 14. THANK YOU!