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Submissions will open March 1, 2020.

2019 Official Selections - Films will be announced September 12, 2019.

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Films Connected to Southwestern Ontario

We are looking for films that have at least one member of the key artistic team that has spent a significant time in the area, or films that were filmed in or are about the region. The key artistic team includes director, writer, producer, DOP, sound design and actors. Subject matter or setting of the film is not restricted to the region.


Head to Film Freeway to learn the full rules and regulations for submitting



SHORT FILM   Less than 40 minutes in length
FEATURE FILM   Less than 120 minutes in length 
SHORT DOCUMENTARY   Less than 40 minutes in length
DOCUMENTARY FEATURE FILM   Between 40 to 120 minutes in length
SHORT ANIMATION   More than 1 minute and less than 15 minutes in length


Narrative Judges

SUSAN CURRAN - A71 and V71

Over the last two decades, Susan has worked as a marketing executive for BMG, Sony Wonder, Tower Records, Universal Music and Anchor Bay. During her 12-year run as Executive Director of Marketing/Acquisitions for Anchor Bay Entertainment Canada, notable accomplishments include the release of over 1000 titles into the Canadian retail marketplace, over 100 of which were Canadian acquisitions.  Susan was responsible for the Canadian marketing and retail sales strategy for various TV series, including notable hits like The Walking Dead, Three’s Company and Sesame Street. Film successes include the festival favourite Spring, the cult hit Battle Royale, Tales of Halloween, the 40th Anniversary Edition of Black Christmas and the Halloween Complete Box Set. Her innovative marketing and advertising strategies built Anchor Bay’s company profile, and consistently delivered results that exceeded expectations. 

In her latest position of VP of Marketing and Acquisitions at A71 and V71 Susan continues to be a champion of new talent, enjoying the energy and ingenuity of the creative people she meets in the independent film community while successfully bringing their projects to the marketplace.

SHELLY QUADE - Manager Programs & Development and TELUS Partner Liaison National Screen Institute

As manager of programs and development and TELUS partner liaison, Shelly helps coordinate NSI Features First and all TELUS STORYHIVE editions. She takes great pride in her role as facilitator, guide and friend to her teams. Her interest in script reading, clearances and proofreading has brought even more enjoyment to her job.

Shelly came to NSI from Frantic Films where she used her research skills to delve into all areas of scripted and unscripted development. Considered a people person, it was a useful skill to have when casting developing show ideas.

She prides herself on organization and creative thought and particularly enjoys hearing other people’s stories.

Based on the east coast, Shelly represents NSI from her office in Halifax, always looking for the next story to be told.

Shelly’s love of the movie industry began as a teenager when she was cast as an extra in the great Canadian movie Meatballs and got to hold hands with Bill Murray.

COURTNEY McCALLISTER - Head of Development + Co-productions at Vortex Pictures

Courtney is a passionate and dedicated writer/producer. Most recently, Courtney wrote an elevated horror script (Don’t Click) that is going into production in April, 2019. 

Over the past two years, she has helped both emerging and established filmmakers develop and package their scripts. Of the 100+ scripts she’s read and provided notes for, she has proudly seen seven greenlit projects go to camera— selling well internationally afterwards. And though her background is in writing, this past spring/summer, Courtney produced the critically acclaimed documentary series Street Spirits for Bell Canada. Moreover, Courtney managed the production on Night Owl, a web-series that premiered at SXSW Film Festival in March, 2018.


Documentary Judges


CRAIG THOMPSON - President and Executive Producer, Ballinran Entertainment. Craig has 25 years’ experience in content creation, production and management, and more than a decade as a working journalist (CBC, CBC Radio (England), CTV). Specialties: Film and television production management, event management, financing, strategic and business consulting in the media industry. Founder, DocFest Stratford and No Boundaries. Author, acclaimed public speaker, and experienced educator, committed to inspiring the next generation of media professionals. Recent feature documentary credits: Game Changers (2017), The Truth is in the Stars (2017), Mostly Sunny (2016) Chaos on the Bridge (2014). 

CHRISTIE GARLAND - Christy’s films reveal compelling, intimate stories that combine observational documentary with strong dramatic development and universally felt themes. Her feature What Walaa Wants was chosen as one of TIFF Canada’s Top Ten 2018, and was nominated for 3 Canadian Screen Awards. The Globe and Mail called it the “unexpectedly thrilling coming-of-age documentary of the year”. After a world premiere at the Berlinale 2018, where it was shortlisted for the Glashütte Original Award, and the Amnesty Film Award, it has won the Margaret Mead Filmmaker Award, the Special Jury Award at Hot Docs, the Hilal Best Feature Award at the Doha Film Institute’s Ajyal Film Festival and Best Documentary at the Forest City Film Festival in her hometown of London, Ontario in 2018. It was also nominated for the DGC Allan King Award for Excellence in Documentary.

Based in Toronto, she often co‐produces with the Nordic countries. The Bastard Sings The Sweetest Song (2012, Hot Docs, Sheffield) garnered rave reviews at its theatrical release, “echoing the work of Bresson and the Dardennes” (Globe & Mail). Cheer Up (2016, HotDocs, DOC NYC) was called “a biting portrait of young womanhood” by iD/Vice. Christy is an alumni of Ryerson, Binger Film Lab(Amsterdam) and DOK Incubator (Prague).

ALEX ROGALSKI - Alex has been a professional film programmer for more than a decade focusing on documentary and Canadian cinema for festivals across the country including TIFF, Hot Docs, Calgary International Film Festival, Victoria Film Festival, Gimme Some Truth, and others. He is the founder of the One Take Super 8 Event. This event started in Regina in 2000 and has spread across North America, helping to create more than 1000 independent films.

In addition to his film curation, Alex is currently a program consultant with the Saskatchewan Arts Board and was previously the Executive Director of PAVED Arts in Saskatoon. He holds a Masters in Communication and Culture from York and Ryerson Universities and a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Film from the University of Regina and has written for publications including POV magazine.





KRIS PEARN is a Writer/ Director/ Storyboard artist who’s credits include Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs one and two, Star Wars: Solo, Open Season, Arthur Christmas, Pirates- Band of Misfits, Shawn the Sheep, Surf’s Up, and Home to name a few.  Currently he’s writing and directing the upcoming Netflix film “The Willoughbys”, based on the book by Lois Lowry, starring Ricky Gervais and Martin Short.  





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