In an unprecedented act of support for Canadian cinema, Rogers Communications has made the TFCA’s Rogers Best Canadian Film Award by far the country’s richest film prize. The director of the winning film, voted by members of the TFCA, will receive $100,000 from Rogers. The two runners-up will each receive $5,000.
The winner will be announced at the 16th annual TFCA Awards, a gala dinner held in Toronto at the Carlu on Tuesday, January 8, 2013. The Rogers Best Canadian Film Award will be presented by actor/writer/director Don McKellar, whose own awards include three Genies, a Tony—and the TFCA honour for Best Canadian Film for his 1998 feature directing debut, Last Night. Once again, the event will be hosted by Cameron Bailey, artistic director of the Toronto International Film Festival.
“We are enormously grateful to Rogers for taking such a bold initiative,” said TFCA President Brian D. Johnson, film critic for Maclean’s. “This exemplary cash prize gives our cinema pride of place at the country’s top tier of arts awards. It represents a tremendous vote of confidence in Canadian filmmakers, and in the discerning role that Toronto’s robust community of film critics can play in recognizing and rewarding brilliance.”
Rogers became the founding sponsor of the TFCA Awards Gala five years ago. “We are pleased to support content creators in this country through this prize,” said Phil Lind, Vice Chairman, Rogers Communications. “Canadian film is competing on the world stage and with this extraordinary prize we hope to inspire this community to reach even higher.”
The TFCA also welcomes three new sponsors: Manulife Financial, Cineplex Media, and Shangri-la Hotel.
The Manulife Financial Student Film Award will carry a $5,000 cash prize, presented to a short film that the critics will select from student entries submitted by film programs at Humber College, Ryerson University, Sheridan College and York University.
Deluxe will sponsor the TFCA’s Jay Scott Prize for an emerging artist, presenting a cheque for $5,000 plus an equivalent value in post-production services.
The TFCA is extremely grateful to founding sponsor Rogers Communications Inc, and welcomes back its returning sponsors: Maclean’s magazine, the Globe and Mail, Moet & Chandon, Ontario Media Development Corporation, Cineplex Entertainment, Deluxe, MacLaren McGill and the Carlu.
The TFCA honours films, directors, writers and actors in the main Oscar categories. The full slate of TFCA Awards, as voted by the members, will be announced in a press release on Tuesday, December 18, 2012—with the exception of the Rogers Best Canadian Film Award. The three finalists for that prize will be announced Dec. 18, with the winner being revealed at the awards dinner Jan 8, 2013.
Please note: under the TFCA’s guidelines, contenders eligible for the awards include films released in Toronto in 2012 plus films that qualify for the 2012 Oscars and have a Toronto release scheduled by the end of February 2013.