The Canada Media Fund has released a new study (PDF) on the Aboriginal screen-based production sector paints a portrait of a dynamic and vibrant industry sector. Producers in the sector typically employ Aboriginal Peoples, combine the roles of producer, writer and director and create original productions in Aboriginal languages. The report prepared by Maria De Rosa, President of Communications MDR, and her Associate, Marilyn Burgess, examined the state of Aboriginal television, interactive and feature film production in Canada and measured production activity over the five-year period 2007-2008 to 2011-2012. In that period, the sector created over 3,300 full-time jobs, generating almost $173 million in production activity.
The study recommends the development of an audiovisual policy for Aboriginal screen-based production, new incentives to increase access by Aboriginal producers to Canadian broadcasters, increased funding for Aboriginal Peoples Television Network (APTN), greater funding of feature film production, new measures to increase digital media production capacity, international co-production and skills development. The report also points to the need for further research on the distribution and sales of Aboriginal productions.
The report was supported by Aboriginal People’s Television Network, the Canada Media Fund, the National Film Board, the Bell Broadcast and New Media Fund, Telefilm Canada, the Canada Council for the Arts, and the National Screen Institute.
“As a key partner in the development of Aboriginal screen-based media, APTN is pleased to be associated with so many talented producers whose excellent productions tell our stories to the world,” said Jean La Rose, CEO of the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network. “We look forward to future discussions with our industry partners to ensure the continued success and growth of our industry sector.”
President and CEO of the Canada Media Fund, Valerie Creighton, commented that, “the report provides solid evidence of the benefits to Canadians of the Canada Media Fund’s support to Aboriginal production over the years, which has helped to create jobs and provided access to a wide variety of compelling programs and interactive productions in Aboriginal languages.”