Women in Film’s Spotlight Awards Gala Emphasizes Impact

Women in Film and Television Vancouver (WIFT-V), is pleased to announce the winners for their annual Spotlight Awards™. This year’s stellar line up includes: the First Weekend Club’s Founder Anita Adams; actor Camille Sullivan; and Indigenous filmmakers Marie Clements and Loretta Todd. Other winners are: Angie Nolan, Nadia DiMofte, Kim Guise, Arielle Boisvert, Jody Wilson, Anaïsa Visser, Amanda Burke, and Anna Serner. Our award recipients lead by example through their outstanding work and contribution to advancing women in the industry.

Since 1999, Women in Film and Television Vancouver’s has paid tribute to those whose ongoing hard work and dedication have significantly shaped and advanced opportunities for women in screen-based media. WIFT-V will honour B.C.’s film community trailblazers at the Spotlight Awards™ Gala on June 19th. The evening will be hosted by the award-winning Canadian comedian and impersonator, Tracey Bell at Performance Works on Granville Island.

This year’s jury, who had the demanding task of selecting the recipients from a wealth of strong nominations, included Rachelle Chartrand (producer, screenwriter, and past-president of WIFTV), Patricia Gruben (filmmaker, director of Praxis Centre for Screenwriters, and film professor at SFU), and Christine Larsen (Vice Chair of Vancouver Web Fest, WIFTV Producer’s Workbook Committee Member).

WIFT-V is excited to announce the addition of a new award category, the Impact Award. This award is presented for a career, or singular body of work, that has created a significant impact through breaking boundaries, investigating historical experiences, and; or challenging perceptions. The DGC-BC Impact Award will be presented to Marie Clements. Clements is a Canadian Métis playwright, performer, director, producer, and screenwriter, who produces an array work with a creative conviction to tell Indigenous stories.

Anita Adams is the recipient of the Teamsters 155 Woman of the Year Award. This award is presented to an industry leader who has achieved significant success and who has created opportunities for other women in the industry. With nearly 30 years of experience, Anita Adams started in the film industry as an actor and has since worked in development and production on various feature films and shorts. In 2003, she launched the First Weekend Club, growing it into a Canada wide initiative that just celebrated its 15th anniversary.

Camille Sullivan is the recipient of the UBCP/ACTRA Artistic Achievement Award. This award honours a screen-based media artist (i.e. writer, director, producer, editor, director of photography or performer) who has created an outstanding recent work or a significant body of work. Award-winning actress Canadian actor, Camille Sullivan, began her career in 1998 and has since starred in a wide variety films and television series in a range of complex and heavy hitting characters.

Loretta Todd will be awarded the Thunderbird Entertainment Artistic Innovation Award. The Artistic Innovation Award honours a key creator of a recent production or body of work that exemplifies vision, experimentation, and innovation. Loretta Todd is a director, producer, activist, storyteller, and writer whose non-fiction work has been honoured around the globe. As a leading figure in Canadian Indigenous cinema, Todd’s work digs deep to explore Indigenous history and culture from their own lived experiences, voices, and perspectives.

Angie Nolan will be presented with the Capilano University Film Centre Leadership in Education Award. The Leadership in Education Award is presented to a screen industry teacher who has demonstrated a commitment to creating opportunities for and sharing expertise with female students within an academic or professional development context. Starting as a volunteer, Angie Nolan is now the Director of Industry Programming and the driving force behind the Summit and Talent Programs at (the) Whistler Film Festival.”

Nadia DiMofte is the recipient of The Wayne Black Service Award. The Wayne Black Service Award honours a major contributor to the screen-based media community while working ‘behind the scenes’. This award is named in memory of Wayne Black of Alpha Cine who gave tirelessly of his time and talent to help filmmakers. Nadia DiMofte is an emerging filmmaker and Regional Director of Raindance Vancouver, grown the organization into the well-established hub for emerging and established filmmakers we know today.

Kim Guise will be awarded the Bron Iris Award. The Iris Award, named after the Greek mythological figure Iris, is given to a person who has demonstrated a commitment to the promotion of female creators and their screen-based works either through curating or programming or through print and online media sources. Kim Guise is the Director of Local Content at TELUS and the Executive in Charge of Production for TELUS Original Programming.

Arielle Boisvert will be presented with the Finalé Post Production Honoured Friend Award. The Honoured Friend Award recognizes a person who has played a significant role in supporting women in the industry and promoting the goals of WIFTV. Arielle Boisvert is the DIrector of Production and Development at Bright Light Pictures. Her credits include COLASSAL, LITTLE PINK HOUSE, STATUS UPDATE, and HATERS BACK OFF.

Jody Wilson will receive the Matrix Image Award. The Image Award is awarded to a director, writer, editor or director of photography of an outstanding short work that shows production excellence or a unique, visionary approach. Jody Wilson is a writer, director and producer with a background in visual effects, she’s currently in development on her first feature film and series based on her award-winning short, Indigo.

Anaïsa Visser is the recipient of the Encore Newcomer Award. The Newcomer Award recognizes a new artist or technician, including one who is shifting from one career to another (i.e. from an actor to a director) whose first few works have laid the foundation for an inspiring new career. Filmmaker and storyteller Anaïsa Visser were the 2017 Vancouver Mayor’s Arts Award for Emerging Artist in Film and Media. Her script, Send Us Smokes, won the Hot Shot Shorts contest in 2016, and went on to be screened at the Vancouver International Women in Film Festival and the Vancouver Short Film Festival in 2018.

Amanda Burke will be presented with the Troika Sharon Gibbon Award. The Sharon Gibbon Award honours a member in recognition of her volunteer work with WIFTV advancing the organization’s goals. The award is named in memory of Sharon Gibbon, who exemplified these qualities in a career cut short too soon. Amanda Burke a Vancouver based actor and a long time WIFTV supporter. She served on the board of Women in Film & Television Vancouver for four years, three as chair of their International Film Festival committee, and one as Vice President.

Anna Serner is the recipient of the Please Adjust Your Set Award. This award honours a person or organization that has made a major contribution to promoting gender equality in film, television or screen-based media. When Anna Serner took over as chief executive of the Swedish Film Institute in 2011 she immediately addressed the country’s issues with gender parity in the film industry and successfully met her target to have 50 percent of films written, directed and produced by women within four years.

WIFTV is grateful for the support we receive from the community who make this awards gala possible: DGC-BC, Teamsters 155, UBCP/ACTRA, Finalé, Bron, Please Adjust Your Set, Thunderbird Entertainment, Troika, Capilano University, Matrix, Encore, Please Adjust Your Set, Line 21, Wendy D Photography, and Steamworks Brewing.