Margaret Perry, now in her eighties, is the unsung heroine of the Nova Scotia film industry. For over a quarter of a century, she shot, directed, wrote and edited all the tourist films for the province. Through her camera, we view changes in the landscape, in lifestyles, and in film technology.
This short film brings together animation workshops led by award-winning independent animator Caroline Leaf. The film, which discusses and demonstrates Leaf’s artisan's approach to narrative filmmaking, explores 3 techniques she pioneered during her 20-year tenure at the NFB: sand, paint-on-glass and scratch animation.
With quiet intelligence and wry humour, retired documentary filmmaker Kathleen Shannon takes us through the arc of her life and career. Beginning with childhood, moving through her formative years, to her overwhelming desire to give women a chance to tell their stories, this film paints a vibrant portrait of one woman who blazed the way. It's a story of struggle, persistence, and success… and of course, of the NFB's Studio D.
Alanis Obomsawin, an Indigenous woman who earns her living by singing and making films, is the mother of an adopted child. She talks about her life, her people, and her responsibilities as a single parent. Her observations shake some of our cultural assumptions.
This revealing portrait of NFB filmmaker Alanis Obomsawin was shown at a gala ceremony in 2008, where Obomsawin received the Governor General's Performing Arts Award for Lifetime Artistic Achievement. Her work has captured some of the most startling events in Canadian history, including the armed standoff between the Canadian Army and Mohawk warriors in 1993. Her films cross a spectrum of social issues, but they are always human. Obomsawin explains in the interview, "For me, a real documentary is when you're really listening to somebody; they are the ones that will tell you what the story is, not you."
A woman with a deep love of the land, Yolande Simard Perrault sees her life as having been shaped by a planetary upheaval in Charlevoix, Quebec, millions of years ago. As enduring as the Canadian Shield, she’s a woman of strength and spirit, a child of the crater left by the meteor’s impact. This documentary portrays a determined woman who’s the reflection of a land created on an immense scale. She was the creative and life partner of filmmaker Pierre Perrault, who gave up everything to be by her side. The film charts the influence of her unquenchable dreams and her contribution to the building of a people’s collective memory. In a stream of images and words, Simard Perrault recounts the splendours of the landscape and the people who shaped it. Generous and boundless, she embarks on a quest for identity that nurtures and perpetuates the oeuvre of the man who breathed new life into Quebec cinema.
This feature-length documentary shines a much-deserved spotlight on Evelyn Lambart, who stood side-by-side with Norman McLaren for 21 years. Dubbed The First Lady of Canadian Animation, Lambart was an accomplished animator in her own right. This compilation, playfully contextualized by filmmaker Donald McWilliams, aims to prove just that.
This short film is a tribute to award-winning director and screenwriter Deepa Mehta. A true cultural hybrid, Mehta has been described as a “transnational” artist, able to tell universally meaningful stories from a uniquely Canadian point of view. In a career spanning over 30 years she has consistently broken new ground, tackling such controversial issues as intolerance, cultural discrimination and domestic violence. As an Indian who grew up speaking English first in a British Colonial School and then learning Hindi, she finds her passion and her stories in India, and the freedom to choose how to tell those stories in Canada.
Produced by the National Film Board of Canada in co-operation with the National Arts Centre and the Governor General's Performing Arts Awards Foundation on the occasion of the 2012 Governor General's Performing Arts Awards.