Shane Belcourt is an award-winning and two-time CSA-nominated filmmaker based in Toronto, Canada. As a writer and director on many Indigenous works, in both narrative and factual, Shane has a vested interested in creating works that speak to his Métis heritage. Notable work includes the feature film Tkaronto; shorts such as A Common Experience, Keeping Quiet, and Pookums; the dance-documentary Kaha:wi – The Cycle of Life (2015 CSA Best Direction Nomination); and two Historica Canada Minutes Chanie Wenjack and Naskumituwin (Treaty). Recent works include the award-winning 2018 CBC Firsthand documentary Indictment (co-directed with Lisa Jackson; 2017 imagineNATIVE Best Documentary), the music documentary series AMLIFY for APTN (series creator, executive producer, and show-runner), and the dramatic feature Red Rover (co-writer, director). He is an alumna of the TIFF Talent Lab and NSI’s Totally Television programs.
Duane Murray has been writing, producing and acting professionally since graduating from York University’s Acting Conservatory in 1998. He has script consulted and coached actors on TV and film projects for studios including Warner Brothers, Dreamworks, Universal and HBO. He co-founded The Story Attic, with Shane Belcourt for the creation and development of original content, including an adaptation of New York Times Best Selling author Jeff Lemire’s award winning Graphic Novel Roughneck, which Duane developed through the prestigious TIFF Studio. He is Head of Development for RHP, acting as Consulting Producer on the feature horror Isabelle which made it’s World Premiere at the prestigious 2018 Busan International Film Festival and is currently developing TV adaptations of International Best selling novels The Last Rituals and Prey and adapted the English remake of the recent Scandinavian feature horror hit, I Remember You. Duane is also an actor with over 60 produced film and TV credits highlighted by playing the role of Hansi Kalkofen in the Academy Award winning Best Picture Spotlight.
Michelle St. John, who grew up in Toronto, began her career in film as an actress. One of her first roles was as the protagonist in the 1989 CBC film Where the Spirit Lives, for which she won a Gemini Award for Best Actress – Dramatic Program. In 1992, St. John won her second Gemini Award for Best Guest Performance in a Series by an Actor or Actress for her role as Merrily Swanson on E.N.G.. She has worked on many television series, including Northern Exposure and By Way of the Stars, and she voiced the character of Nakoma in Disney’s 1995 animated film Pocahontas.
As a producer she recently collaborated with Shane Belcourt as co-producer on two Heritage Minutes, Chanie Wenjack and Naskumituwin (Treaty). Her directorial debut, Colonization Road, follows comedian Ryan McMahon as he explores how this street in his hometown reflects the uncomfortable reality of Canada’s colonial past and present. Colonization Road has been nominated for two Golden Sheaf Awards and a CSA.
Mike MacMillan has been producing award-winning independent film since founding Lithium in 2010. Named in 2015 to Screen International’s distinguished Future Leader’s list, his features have played at TIFF, Berlinale, Cannes and other top festivals internationally.
With Weirdos (dir: Bruce McDonald) entertaining audiences after a strong festival run (TIFF 2016, Berlinale 2017) and Mobile Homes (dir: Vladimir de Fontenay) turn at Cannes (Quinzaines) in 2017, Lithium anticipates the festival release of Don’t Talk to Irene (dir: Pat Mills) in fall of 2017.
Mike’s first feature, the dark comedy/thriller I Put a Hit on You premiered at Slamdance Film Festival (Mongrel) and his second – dark comedy Guidance (Strand) – premiered at TIFF14.
He is in a deep and meaningful relationship with his bulldog Jack.
Originally from Hudson, Quebec, Chad Williams has proven himself to be a successful entrepreneur. With over 15 years’ experience in the finance industry with more than 10 years dedicated to investment banking, Chad is currently the Chairmain of Quantum International Inc, a public gaming company. He is a founder of Agilith Capital Inc. (an investment fund) as well as Westwind Capital Inc. (a stock broker). An artist at heart with a strong drive to follow his passions, Chad is new to the film and music industry although he studied film well before the internet was invented.
Luke Higginson has been editing for film and Television since graduating from Ryerson University in 2005.
In-between editing for the last 4 Olympic Games and the hit CBC show Dragons’ Den, Luke has cut 7 feature films and a slew of award-winning shorts.
He also wrote and directed (and edited) Relax, I’m From The Future, which was a TIFF 2013 inductee.
David Hannan is a production designer in both theatre and film for over twenty years.
Hannan has been a part of a number of award winning projects including Kaha:wi – The Cycle of Life, Directed by Shane Belcourt starring Santee Smith. This one-hour performance arts documentary has shown in both film festivals and national television in 2014. In 2013 Hannan designed a short film called A Common Experience which was based on a short story “Dear Mr. Buchwald” by Yvette Nolan. The film is a poetic reflection on what it means to be a child of a residential school survivor. Tkaronto a feature film produced The Breath Films in 2007 which has played in a number of international film festivals.
Along with his work as a production designer Hannan is an accomplished visual artist who has shown his work nationally and Internationally and is part of a number of public and private collections.
Anthony WallaceComposer & Location Sound Recordist
Anthony Wallace is a composer, instrumentalist and sound artist based in Toronto. A classically trained violinist, he has scored films, television documentaries as well as numerous theatre and dance productions. At the age of 18, Anthony traveled to West Africa where he studied hand percussion, and drum construction. Anthony obtained an Honours BFA in composition from York University, and performed in the York Symphony Orchestra as well as the Niagara Youth orchestra. He is a contributing creative member to the experimental folk ensemble Howl Canyon, and has lent his violin abilities to numerous Canadian recording artists including The Weather Station, Lisa Conway (LCON), Saida Baba Talibah, Gay, The Cowgirl Choir, LILMAN and many others.
Carolee Custus is a graduate of the Humber fashion arts program, and is the senior stylist for Faze magazine. She has worked in the Art Department for Urban Native Girl, a 13-part documentary series on APTN; Scrath, In the House of Guadet, and La Piscina.
John Reed Hryszkiewicz1st AC, Grip, Gaff, DMT, and additional Camera Operator
Fascinated with cameras and imaging since sending out for a neon-green Concord 110 through his favorite breakfast cereal in the late 1980’s, John Reed Hryszkiewicz graduated from the Film and Television Production program at Humber College in 2008, and has been a Toronto-based Filmmaker ever since. An experienced Editor, Actor and Cinematographer, his recent work includes the black and white 16mm short Counterparts, which screened at Toronto’s Stiffed Film Festival in 2010.