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News

October 23, 2020

October 21 FilmOntario Update

Save the Date – AGM Thursday, December 3

Join us online from 4 – 6 pm on Thursday, December 3 for our Annual General Meeting. There is no doubt that 2020 will be a year that we won’t soon forget. We would like to invite all our members, who make our work possible, to join us online on December 3 to review the year that was, and make plans for the year ahead. Keep an eye on your inbox for registration details – coming soon.

Fall 2020 Budget Submission


The Province of Ontario has just completed budget consultations for a 2020 Fall Budget, scheduled to be delivered before the end of November.

FilmOntario’s written submission focussed on the requests that we have been making since the beginning of the pandemic and related industry shutdown: tax credit eligibility adjustments to protect those productions that were interrupted due to COVID-19, support for insurance and health and safety costs, and tax credit streamlining and modernization.

In addition, we highlighted the importance of maintaining Ontario Creates and NOHFC support, the need to ensure access to government support programs for training and apprenticeships by our industry, and the need to support diversifying our sector and encouraging the use of local talent in front of and behind the camera on all productions that film here.

These recommendations are in line with the suggestions put forward by Minister MacLeod’s Film and Television Advisory Panel, and will continue to be the foundation of our advocacy efforts for the foreseeable future. If there are other issues you would like to discuss or highlight, please don’t hesitate to reach out to Cynthia at any time.

Reminder – Call for Board of Director Nominations


We are currently seeking nominations from private sector (i.e. Class A) members in good standing for the FilmOntario Board of Directors.

Board members are expected to be senior decision-makers from member organizations who are knowledgeable about and experienced in the industry. We attempt to ensure there is representation from across private sector members - large and small companies, domestic and service providers, studio owners, equipment suppliers, post-production, legal and financial services, etc.

FilmOntario is committed to ensuring that the Board includes representation from groups that have traditionally been underrepresented, and we strongly encourage nominations from these communities. For the purposes of this nomination, "underrepresented" means an individual who self-identifies as belonging to one or more categories that include, but are not limited to: women, transgender, gender non-conforming, LGBTQ+, Indigenous peoples, racialized and ethno-cultural groups, and persons with disabilities. This definition should be interpreted in a manner that is consistent with the evolving nature of equality issues.

Members may nominate themselves or a colleague for a Board position. While multiple nominees from the same organization may be submitted, there can only be one Director from each member organization on the Board. If you are nominating a colleague, please ensure you have their permission to submit their name for consideration.

If you are interested in submitting a nomination, please complete this form by no later than 5 pm on Friday October 30. After consideration by the Board's Nomination Committee, final nominations will be presented at the 2020 AGM on Thursday, December 3. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to email Cynthia or call at (416) 906-5408.

Insurance Update: Federal Government Announces Short-Term Compensation Fund

On September 25, the Minister of Canadian Heritage, the Honourable Steven Guilbeault, announced an initiative to compensate for the lack of insurance coverage for audiovisual productions interrupted or abandoned due to COVID-19. The Government of Canada put this temporary support measure in place to allow the industry to restart.

The Short-Term Compensation Fund for Canadian Audiovisual Productions (STCF), which is budgeted at up to $50 million, is a temporary measure and will be administered by Telefilm Canada, along with the Canada Media Fund. The maximum compensation will be $1.5 million in the case of a temporary interruption and $3 million in the case of a complete shutdown of production.

More information on the implementation of this new fund, including its terms and conditions, will be released by Telefilm Canada in the coming weeks. The announcement from Canadian Heritage can be viewed here.

Thank you to the CMPA who took the lead on advocating for this initiative with the federal government. FilmOntario was pleased to support these efforts and has asked the province to supplement the federal program with additional funds for Ontario producers.

2020 Membership Fees

Thank you to everyone who has paid their 2020 Membership Fees. We appreciate your support, especially in these difficult times, and the work we do would not be possible without your commitment.

Earlier this year we announced that we would provide extended payment terms and other flexible arrangements to accommodate the financial pressures many of you have been dealing with this year. As the financial year draws to a close, we ask that if you have not yet paid your fees or made arrangements to do so, please contact Cynthia as soon as possible.

Ontario Green Screen Initiative – Climate & Sustainable Production Training

FilmOntario is pleased to be a partner in the Ontario Green Screen (OGS) Initiative, a collaboration between government and industry to make lasting change in the film and television sector and to empower individuals, production companies and studios to make sustainable choices.

The OGS initiative is offering Climate and Sustainable Production Training to all film and television workers in Ontario. The program provides the context needed to better understand the climate emergency we face and how to make a difference on set.

OGS offers this course for free, delivered online to allow participation regardless of where in the province you live. It is three hours in length, with a 10-minute break between the two sections. The content is delivered with plenty of opportunities to discuss, share ideas and collaborate with the instructors and other participants.

If you are interested in taking this training, you can sign up here.

Take the Rosa Survey: The Change You Want to See

Aftermetoo, the Canadian Women’s Foundation, and Hill Strategies have released the first-ever national bilingual survey on workplace sexual harassment in the Canadian performing arts, film, and television industry. They want to hear your story. Safer workplaces in the performing arts industry are possible. The results of the Rosa Survey will be used to advocate for change.

Take the Rosa Survey (in English or French) between September 21st and October 23rd.

FAQs and more information about the survey can be found here.

DOC Launches COVID-19 Best Practices Guide

On September 28, the Documentary Organization of Canada (DOC) released their online guide, Documentary Production in the Era of COVID-19 (also available in French).

The first of its kind, this guide was created with input from the community of professional documentary makers and is aimed at helping filmmakers navigate new ways of working safely in the context of COVID-19. The guide was created in partnership with the National Film Board of Canada (NFB), the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) and the Directors Guild of Canada (DGC).

News to Share?

If there are any updates or announcements you would like to share with your fellow FilmOntario members, please don’t hesitate to let me know at clynch@filmontario.ca and I will include them in the next member update.

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