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Ottawa IndieFest 2017

Our inaugural annual festival took place on June 3, 2017 at La Nouvelle Scène in downtown Ottawa. The film festival programme consisted of 10 films—4 feature-length and 6 short films. We were fortunate to have several filmmakers (both local and from out of town) attend the festival and audience Q&A sessions followed each screening block. Filmmakers participating in the annual festival screenings were paid artist fees.

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May 24, 2017

Ottawa Indie Fest - A day-long celebration of Independent Canadian Films!

Our second annual festival takes place at the Arts Court Theatre (2 Daly Avenue) on Saturday November 3rd.

Ottawa Indie Fest is pleased to announce its inaugural screenings of independent Canadian films on June 3, 2017 at beautifully renovated La Nouvelle Scene Theatre in the heart of Ottawa's art district. Founded by local Ottawa filmmakers Jith Paul (Treepot Media) , Ed Kucerak (Kublacom Pictures) and Blair Campbell 4 Sight Media), the festival program consist of 4 screenings blocks (11am, 1pm, 5pm and 8pm) featuring 4 feature length films and 6 shorts - all Ottawa premieres.

Highlights include:

"We are extremely proud to introduce Ottawa audiences to these independent Canadian films”, says Ottawa Indie Fest president Jith Paul. "It will be the first time Ottawa will get a chance to see these exciting, thrilling, insightful, funny and though provoking films made by Canadian filmmakers from across the country.

Ottawa Indie Fest is a cultural, not-for-profit organization that recognizes, promotes and celebrates the art of cinema by showcasing independent Canadian films and filmmakers and grounded in the belief that Canadian film and filmmakers are distinctive and vital to Canada's culture and the development of the local Ottawa economy.

Information about the festival program, the films, filmmakers can be found online on the festival's website: ocanfilmfest.ca.

OttawaIndieFest2017 Films - Taglines / Synopses and Filmmaker Bios
(June 3, 2017)

Delinquent / RAW*, David I. Strasser (Vancouver, BC) [ Narrative | Feature ]

A delinquent youth on a downward spiral, is sentenced to spend time on his uncle’s organic farm on Salt Spring Island. Put to work with a bunch of misfit interns, he soon discovers that not everything is as idyllic as it first appears.

David I. Strasser is a film and television director based in Vancouver, Canada and represented by Meridian Artists in Toronto. His movies screen regularly to audiences worldwide, including major television networks such as the Hallmark Channel (U.S.), Lifetime Television (U.S.), UPtv (U.S.), Channel 4 (U.K.), TF1 (France), and the W Network (Canada). In 2018, David was selected for the prestigious TIFF Filmmaker Lab, was a JETS participant at the 68th Berlinale, and was awarded the Telus STORYHIVE Banff Fellowship. His European co-production, The Omertà, was recently awarded development funding from Telefilm Canada and Bell Media's Harold Greenberg Fund. David studied Film Production at Vancouver Film School and holds two degrees from the University of British Columbia, where he studied both Law and Psychology.

More info: Trailer

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Broken Mile, Justin McConnell (Toronto, ON) [ Narrative | Feature ]

A drug addict awakens to find the girl he is with is dead. To escape the consequences, he seeks the help of his ex-girlfriend while they dodge a mysterious figure who chases them around the city with a gun. Told in real time and presented in a single take.

Justin McConnell runs Toronto-based production/post company Unstable Ground and is the founder of the monthly horror short-film festival Title Terrors (which he co-runs with Rue Morgue Magazine), a Programmer for Toronto After Dark Film Festival, he is also an acquisitions rep for two Canadian distribution companies. A classic multi-tasker, McConnell often fills the roles of Producer, screenwriter, director, cinematographer, editor and occasionally composer. We list his credits as a Director first.

More info: Trailer

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Heroes Manufactured, Yaron Betan (Toronto, ON) [ Documentary | Feature ]

Canadian independent artists try to break into the comic book industry while dealing with fandom and the craze of comic book conventions.

Based in Toronto, Yaron Betan partnered with a Katherine Choptiany to launch Moving Image, a commercial platform integrated with indie filmmakers and established industry members. Aside from producing, Yaron finds the time to teach at the Picture Perfect Film School in Toronto, Canada.

More info: Trailer

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Sisyphus Rides, Lisa Lightbourn Lay and Tim Alberts (Halton Hills, ON) [ Documentary | Feature ]

Adventurer Vince Vetro goes on a cycling expedition in Nicaragua in order to grow his micro-finance NGO, The Lending Journey, an organization which provides micro loans to underprivileged Nicaraguan women.

Tim Alberts has composed and produced music for various feature films, radio and television productions, as well as numerous documentary and short films. More recently, Tim has turned his attention to producing documentary films, such as the 2013 film, Waiting a Lifetime which he directed, edited and scored. In 2019, his film, Sisyphus Rides aired on the CBC’s Documentary channel.

More info: Trailer

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Hue Quilted Windowpane, Lasha Mowchun (Winnipeg, MB) [ Experimental | Short ]

Imaginary love is better than real loneliness as a lonely woman finally finds love when Elvis Presley charms her through the television.

Lasha Mowchun is a filmmaker and film educator, born and raised in Winnipeg, Manitoba. As a filmmaker Lasha specializes in experimental storytelling and documentary. Probing the psychology of her characters she creates unique, flamboyant or even magical worlds based around the psyche of her subjects. Lasha’s work is informed by feminist values, campy humor and ecological concerns. Lasha graduated with a Bachelors in Fine Arts and has since become very involved at the Winnipeg Film Group. Her films have screened locally and internationally at venues including the Julie Saul Gallery in New York City, the Simultan Festival in Romania and close to home at the Gimli Film Festival. Lasha has found support for her films from both public and private agencies including BellMTS, the Jewish Foundation and the Canada Council.

More info: Trailer | YouTube

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Honestly Charlotte, Sarah Hedar (Vancouver, BC) [ Narrative | Short ]

A routine job interview goes sideways when the applicant gets completely honest about what it’s like to be an artist trapped in a corporate cubicle.

Sarah Hedar has a natural patience and sense of humour that lends itself to the ebb and flow of the creative process. Her work as an emerging director and writer is supported by her years of experience as an editor, working on provocative and original award winning projects. With a strong technical and artistic background, Sarah focuses her attention on visual storytelling that promotes empowerment for women, critical thinking and helping to make this world just a little bit brighter.

More info: Trailer

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Milo, Jeremie Azencot (Vancouver, BC) [ Narrative | Short ]

A father and his 10-year old son while discussing art history and analyzing paintings develop a beautiful bond between each other.

Jeremie Azencot has been working in the Film Industry for nearly 10 years, first in Montreal for a leading Theatrical Canadian Film Distributor, managing multiple Film Releases, while starting to direct his own short films. A couple years ago he switched to Film Production full-time and moved to Vancouver, working as a Director Assistant and Production Assistant. In 2015, he made my Director debut with a spy story called Papa Bear. His second movie, a family drama entitled Milo, was released in 2016.

More info: Trailer

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The Talk, Tyler Boyco (Toronto, ON) [ Narrative | Short ]

Neil and Carol, a husband and wife, try to come up with the perfect way to have the most uncomfortable conversation known to mankind; the sex talk with their teenage daughter.

Tyler Boyco was born in Toronto and raised in rural Keswick where the only source of entertainment was skateboarding and playing hockey. After graduating with honours from Durham and Sheridan College, he went on to become a production coordinator for both indie productions and major studio features while pursuing his passion of writing and directing film and television. He is the co-creator of the web series Bluebird, which is being developed for television with Don Ferguson Productions.

More info: Trailer

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Poison in the Water, Romeo Candido (Toronto, ON) [ Narrative | Short ]

A father and his 10-year old son while discussing art history and analyzing paintings develop a beautiful bond between each other.

Romeo Candido has worked in film, television, advertising, music, theatre ad digital industries, garnering awards and recognition for each.

More info: Trailer | Facebook | YouTube

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Andre the Anti-Giant, Kim Saltarski (Toronto, ON) [ Documentary | Short ]

A 3-foot-something actor/comedian/disability advocate strives to retake the stage following a life-endangering diagnosis in this intimate and inspirational tale of hope, hardship, and hilarity.

Kim Saltarski has applied his dynamic bald brain to creating over 400 hours of original animated and live-action family, tween, adult comedy, reality and documentary TV content. But for Kim, it’s all about telling an engaging story, no matter what the length, genre or target audience.

More info: Trailer | YouTube

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OttawaIndieFest2017 Festival Photos

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Photos by Danielle Rolfe, #OCanFilmFest2017 Crew. Full album here: OttawaIndieFest2017 Festival Photos