It is with great sadness I report that we have lost an icon of Canadian theatre, film and television. Anna Cameron passed away on January 5, 2014. During the 50s and 60s, Anna was one of Canada’s best- known television personalities. She was co-host of Take 30 with Paul Soles, and made frequent guest appearances on Front Page Challenge. Her career took her all over the world, but her favourite place was by the sea. “If I didn’t go back at nights and look at that ocean, I think I would fall apart.” She was much loved and will be sorely missed by the theatre/film/television community.
Big news this month in Nova Scotia would be the nominations for the 2014 Canadian Screen Awards! We make funny shows, so the reporting goes in the Chronicle Herald. Locally shot Seed, executive produced by our own former WIFT-AT Board member Karen Wentzell, and Call Me Fitz created by the award winning talent of Sheri Elwood (a featured guest at WMW a couple of years ago) each garnered eight nominations, with Mr. D earning five and This Hour has 22 Minutes receiving two. Two of our lovely actress/comedians are competing for Best Supporting Actress in a TV Comedy – Bette MacDonald for Mr. D and Nikki Payne for Satisfaction. Also, Kimberley McTaggart is nominated for Best Picture Editing (Comedy) both for episodes of Seed and Call Me Fitz. Also, the Academy Board of Director’s Tribute (posthumously) will go to Marjorie Anthony. Marjorie was inducted into the Canadian Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame in 1997, and could easily be called the first lady of Canadian broadcasting. She came from the small town of Mill Village, Nova Scotia, and at 13, sang and tap-danced for a radio station in Bridgewater, NS before leaving the Maritimes, and ultimately moving to California. This is by no means a complete list of local talent being recognized – but just “quick highlights” to entice you to watch The Screen Awards on CBC TV on March 9, 2014. Mark your calendars!
I was fortunate enough to participate in an informal table reading of a new screenplay titled A Belly Full by Halifax’s own Mary-Colin Chisholm and, writer/director and former resident of Halifax, Marcia Cash. It has a strong, predominantly female cast, and what a treat to be in the same room with some of the province’s most acclaimed actresses! Some great brainstorming ensued and hopefully we will see this project on the big screen soon! It does make me ponder if these reading/brainstorming sessions couldn’t happen more frequently – especially for women trying to move their projects forward. Just a thought!