Co-presented by Carleton University Art Gallery
Contemporary media continues to leave many groups marginalized and underrepresented. What can independent filmmakers do to help foster change? This interactive panel discussion will give directors, writers and producers a “toolkit” of simple, easily achievable things they can do on their next project to make it more diverse and equitable. A panel of experts will conduct an engaging and informative discussion that will touch upon every stage of film production, providing practical tips for diversifying screenwriting, casting, working with crews and more.
Sedina Fiati is a facilitator, activist, performer, producer and creator with a BFA in Music Theatre from the University of Windsor. Her work has included performing in, creating and directing various projects, which have appeared in festivals all over the world, including Reel World Film Festival, Bravofact, Hollywood Black Film Festival and the Langston Hughes Film Festival. Sedina is currently the co-chair of ACTRA Toronto’s Diversity Committee and hopes to leave the world better than she found it.
Chelsea McMullan’s films and projects have premiered at Sundance, the Toronto International Film Festival and the New York Photography Festival. Her award-winning shorts have been featured on Nowness, Dazed Digital, Vice and in Vogue Italia magazine. Chelsea is a member of the artist co-operative What Matters Most and was an artist in residence at Fabrica, where she made the Genie-nominated short film Derailments, a tribute to the legacy of Federico Fellini. My Prairie Home, her musical documentary portrait of gender-neutral singer/songwriter Rae Spoon, won the 2013 Vancouver Film Critics’ Prize for Best Canadian Documentary and garnered a Canadian Screen Award nomination. It is currently in distribution with the National Film Board of Canada. Michael Shannon Michael Shannon John is her second feature film.
Tracy Legault established Carte Blanche Films, a project-driven production company specializing in uniquely Canadian drama series, in 2008. Since then, the company has delivered over 120 half hours of regionally-produced dramatic primetime television for Groupe Média TFO, TVO, APTN and Unis TV. With a background in visual art and art history and over a decade of production experience, Tracy has built a reputation for producing engaging programming for and about Canadians living outside of urban centres. Her series have earned several nominations at the Prix Gémeaux in various categories. Les Bleus de Ramville was awarded Excellence in Title Design at SXSW 2012 and a Silver award at the Summit Creative Awards in 2012. The international co- production Hard Rock Medical premiered on TVO and garnered a nomination at SXSW 2013 for Excellence in Title Design. While Carte Blanche’s specialty is fiction, they recently diversified to develop interactive multi-platform series and web series.
Layla Brown is a womanist activist and artist working and living in Ottawa. She is an accomplished freelance front-end web developer/designer as well as owner/operator/curator/writer for Standard Criteria, a website dedicated to using creative expression to show diverse human perspectives, ideas, and experiences, with a specialized focus on marginalized matters and voices. She is the author of Harsh Tokes, a personal zine that served to highlight the racism, misogyny, and exclusion that runs rampant in the Ottawa independent music scene. She brings with her a varied background, including a BA in Film Studies from Carleton University, an Interactive Multimedia Graduate Certificate from Algonquin College’s School of Media & Design, as well as over ten years at the Ottawa School of Speech & Drama, where she was awarded the Speech & Drama Senior Trophy Award upon graduation.