Telefilm Canada & Talent Fund unveil the new wave of Canadian talent

45 first feature and narrative web projects selected in the Talent to Watch Program

Toronto/Montréal, June 27, 2018 – Telefilm Canada and the Talent Fund announce the first 45 English- and French-language projects selected under the new Talent to Watch Program (formerly known as the Micro-Budget Production Program). In all, 38 feature films and seven narrative web projects from across the country.

“We were able to increase our support from 15 to 45 projects this year because of the extraordinary contribution of the film schools, co-ops, and festivals, our program designated partners. In addition, I would like to thank Niv Fichman, of Rhombus Media, Matt Johnson and Matt Miller for their insight and generosity in helping redesign this program last year – an important legacy that will benefit emerging creators for years to come,” said Jean-Claude Mahé, Acting Executive Director, Telefilm Canada. “Together, we discover the next generation of storytellers from across Canada and help ignite their careers.”

The Talent Fund, a private donation fund, has once again contributed significantly to the Program, with generous support from principal partners Bell Media and Corus Entertainment, as well as numerous corporate and individual donors.

“The Talent Fund has made tremendous strides in the last six years,” says Hartley T. Richardson, Chair of the Talent Fund. “I’m pleased to report that, since the beginning of the year, we have raised an additional $1 million in commitments, have added new partners including Québecor, and we are determined to continue this momentum.”

Selection process

Creative teams from across the country submitted potential projects to one of the Program’s designated partners. From there, each partner submitted projects to Telefilm for consideration by the decision jury.

The Festival Selection Stream allows emerging filmmakers whose short films have been selected at key festival to submit a project directly to Telefilm for jury consideration.

In the month of May, three separate peer-based juries were held comprised of industry representatives from English, French and Indigenous groups across Canada. Each jury strove to maintain a diverse and inclusive portfolio, while also ensuring exceptional quality of content.

Designated partners with selected projects include York University, Bosa Centre for Film & Animation Capilano University, Hoppenheim School of Cinema Concordia University, Institut national de l’image et du son, Caribbean Tales, Creative Women Workshops Association, The Inside Out LGBT Film Festival, and Atlantic Filmmakers Cooperative Limited, among many others.

Projects selected for 2018-2019 by province


  • Thin Ice, Web format, Director and Producer: Kelly Milner, Writer: Kirsten Madsen, Partner: Yukon Film Society

British Columbia

  • All-in Madonna, Director: Arnold Lim, Producer: Ana De Lara, Writer: Susie Winters, Partner: National Screen Institute – Canada
  • Be Still, Director and Writer: Elizabeth Lazebnik, Producer: Sara Blake, Partner: Creative Women Workshops Association
  • Esluna: The World Beyond, Director and Writer: Denver Jackson, Producer: Daniel Hogg, Partner: National Screen Institute – Canada
  • Q, Director: Benjamin Musgrave, Writer: Dustin Griffin, Producer: Dawn Bird, Partner: CineVic Society Of Independent Filmmakers
  • The Bannocking, Web format, Director: Carr Sappier, Writer: Mitchell Saddleback, Producer: Damien Eaglebear, Partner: Bosa Centre for Film & Animation Capilano University, Component: Indigenous


  • Events Transpiring Before, During, and After a High School Basketball Game, Director and Writer: Ted Stenson, Producer: Lewis Liski, Partner: Calgary Society Of Independent Filmmakers


  • Billy, Director: Jordan Molaro, Writer: Kyle Nobess, Producer: Jorge Requena Ramos, Partner: On Screen Manitoba Inc.
  • Ruthless Souls, Director and Writer: Madison Thomas, Producer: Darcy Waite, Partner: National Screen Institute – Canada, Component: Indigenous


  • 40 ACRES, Director: RT!, Writers: RT! and Glenn Taylor, Producer: Lora Campbell, Partner: Caribbean Tales
  • Easy Land, Director and Writer: Sanja Zivkovic, Producer: Julie Strifler, Partner: Canadian Film Centre
  • Gay Mean Girls, Director: Heyishi Zhang, Writers: Isabel Putz-Preyra, Sennah Yee, and Mandeq Hassan, Producer: Maddy Falle, Partner: Ryerson University
  • HATE, Director and Writer: Reem Morsi, Producer: Erica Orofino, Partner: Creative Women Workshops Association
  • Islands, Director and Writer: Martin Edralin, Producer: Lauren Corber, Festival Selection Stream
  • JUMP, Director and Writer: Phil Connell, Producers: Katie Corbridge and Hayley Brown, Partner: The Inside Out LGBT Film Festival Inc.
  • Le Corbeau, Director and Writer: Ho Che Anderson, Producer: Mohamed Hassan, Partner: Toronto Film School
  • Learn to Swim, Director: Thyrone Tommy, Writer: Marni Van Dyk, Producer: Alona Metzer, Partner: Canadian Film Centre
  • Once Upon A Time In Tehranto, Director and Writer: Faran Moradi, Producer: Natali Topalovska, Partner: Sheridan College
  • Québexit, Director and Writer: Joshua Demers, Producer: Shannon Fewster, Partner: York University
  • Scarborough, Director: Rich Williamson, Writer: Catherine Hernandez, Producer: Shasha Nakhai, Partner: Toronto Reel Asian International Film Festival
  • Songs She Sings in Shadows, Director and Writer: Fazila Amiri, Producer: Lesley Johnson, Partner: York University
  • Spawn & Geezer, Web format, Directors: Louis Taylor and Karl Jason, Writers: Louis and Altair Pflug-Taylor, Producer: Louis Taylor, Partner: Caribbean Tales
  • Right Between the Eyes, Directors and Writers: Madeleine Sims-Fewer and Dusty Mancinelli, Producers: Madeleine Sims-Fewer, Dusty Mancinelli, Yona Strauss and Hayley Brown, Festival Selection Stream
  • Stanleyville, Director: Max McCabe-Lokos, Writer: Rob Benvie, Producer: Ashley Shields-Muir, Partner: Festival Selection Stream
  • The Village Keeper, Director and Writer: Karen Chapman, Producer: Leslie Norville, Partner: Caribbean Tales
  • There’s No Place Like This Place, Anyplace, Director and Writer: Lulu Wei, Producers: Lulu Wei and Ali Weinstein, Partner: ReelWorld Film Festival Inc.
  • This Place, Director: Nayani Thiyagarajah, Writers: Golshan Abdmoulaie, K. Devery Jacobs and Nayani Thiyagarajah, Producers: Camaro West and Simone Ince, Partner: ReelWorld Film Festival Inc.
  • Worms, Director and Writer: Ben Petrie, Producers: Ben Petrie and Dean Gold, Partner: Festival Selection Stream
  • Meilleur Avant, Web format, Director and Writer: Laura Bergeron, Producer: Maxime Robin, Partner: Toronto Film School, Component: Official-Language Minority Communities


  • Moment One, Director and Writer: Mark Morgenstern, Producer: Carole Bouchard, Partner: Main Film Inc., Component: Official-Language Minority Communities
  • Bleed With Me, Director and Writer: Amelia Moses, Producer: Mariel Scammell, Partner: Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema Concordia University, Component: Official-Language Minority Communities
  • Cimes, Director and Writer: Daniel Daigle, Producers: Daniel Daigle and Louis Lavoie Isebaert, Partner: Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema Concordia University
  • Damascus Dreams, Director and Writer: Émilie Serri, Producer: Audrey-Ann Dupuis-Pierre, Partner: Doc Circuit Montréal
  • Femmes au Sommet, Web format, Director, Florence Pelletier, Writer: Samuel Trudelle, Producer: Caroline Côté, Partner: Main Film Inc.
  • Jusqu’au déclin, Director: Patrice Laliberté, Writer: Patrice Laliberté and Nicolas Krief, Producer: Julie Groleau, Partner: Festival Selection Stream
  • La Marina, Directors and Writers: Christophe Levac and Etienne Galloy, Producer: Etienne Galloy, Partner: Main Film Inc.
  • Le Bruit des Moteurs, Director and Writer: Philippe Grégoire, Producer: Andrew Przybytkowski, Partner: Main Film Inc.
  • Les Libres, Director and Writer: Nicolas Lévesque, Producers: Nicolas Lévesque and Jean-Phiilippe Archibald, Partner: Coop Spira
  • Note de passage, Director: Frédérick Neegan Trudel, Writer: Jocelyn Martel-Thibault, Producer: Line Sander Egede, Partner: Institut national de l’image et du son
  • Tara, Director and Writer: Laurence Turcotte-Fraser, Producer: Katerine Lefrançois, Partner: Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema Concordia University

Nova Scotia

  • Bone Cage, Director and Writer: Taylor Olson, Producer: Melani Wood, Partner: Atlantic Filmmakers Cooperative Limited
  • CareCroft, Web format, Director and Writer: Koumbie, Writer and Producer: Amy Trefry, Partner: WIFT-AT
  • Murmur, Director and Writer: Heather Young, Producer: Martha Cooley, Partner: NSCAD University

New Brunswick

  • Queen of the Andes, Director and Writer: Jillian Acreman, Producer: Arianna Martinez, Partner: New Brunswick Filmmakers Co-operative Limited

Newfoundland & Labrador

  • Little Orphans, Director: Ruth Lawrence, Writer: Emily Bridger, Producer: Jennifer Hawley, Partner: St. John’s International Women’s Film Festival, Inc.

About the Talent Fund
The Talent Fund helps the film industry diversify its funding sources and promote its successes. Guided by an advisory committee of business and community leaders, the Fund mainly supports the discovery and career progression of emerging Canadian talent in the audiovisual industry. Thanks to principal partners Bell Media and Corus Entertainment, and to several foundations and individuals, the Fund has raised $15 million to date. Visit for more information.

About Telefilm Canada

Telefilm is dedicated to the cultural, commercial and industrial success of Canada’s audiovisual industry. Through funding and promotion programs, Telefilm supports dynamic companies and creative talent at home and around the world. Telefilm also makes recommendations regarding the certification of audiovisual treaty coproductions to the Minister of Canadian Heritage, and administers the programs of the Canada Media Fund. Launched in 2013, the Talent Fund accepts private donations to principally support emerging talent. Visit and follow us on Twitter at and on Facebook at 

Media enquiries:

Joyce Richards
Advisor, Public Relations – English Market
Telefilm Canada
416-973-1819, ext. 2521

Andréane LeblancAdvisor, Public Relations – French Market
Telefilm Canada
514-283-0838, ext. 2065, or 1-800-567-0890