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Volume 2, Issue 5, September, 2011 | Canadian Media Producers Association

News & Events

Volume 2, Issue 5, September, 2011

A welcoming message from Norm Bolen

In the News

@ The CMPA Board of Directors met in Toronto on September 7th. The meeting was followed by the CMPA's Annual General Meeting.

@ Warren Ross has been named the CMPA’s new National Director, Industrial Relations. Warren comes to us from a leading employment and labour law firm. His position commences in our Toronto office on September 26th.

@ Our Ottawa office is moving locations! As of mid-October you can contact us at 601 Bank Street, Second Floor, Ottawa, ON K1S 3T4. We will send a note to members as a reminder closer to the date.

Report from Tom Cox, Chair CMPA Board of Directors

Following our September Board meeting, it is clear that in the short-term, CMPA staff must monitor and guide the implementation of the existing Terms of Trade Agreement while completing negotiations with the CBC. Furthermore, we must review government plans to reintroduce copyright legislation this fall. We have important labour negotiations coming up. We will continue Phase Two of our member outreach plan. Also, we need to look for new avenues of funding for our mentorship program.

While these important initiatives are underway, the Board of Directors can focus on longer-range strategies. Two years ago, the CMPA adopted an ambitious three-year strategic plan. That plan, created by the Board with staff in a facilitated retreat, affirmed that the CMPA would be the leading voice advocating on behalf of all screen-based entrepreneurs;

a)   by empowering members to retain, maintain and monetize rights,
b)   by growing value of our content internationally and domestically,
c)   by identifying and facilitating new financing models and sources, and
d)   by establishing improved relationships with government to create a “Digital Content Strategy”

The Terms of Trade Agreement provides a crucial framework for retaining and maintaining rights. We must now ensure that independent producers have the tools to fully monetize content and create sustainable businesses. We must develop new financial models reflecting commercial changes in our industry and the global economy. We must ensure that Canada’s feature film industry keeps pace with the progress being made within the television sector.

This November, the CMPA Board of Directors will meet to create a new strategic plan designed to realize these important goals, and to explore new ways to create value for members, expand the CMPA’s vision and further crystallize its mandate.

We welcome your thoughts on the challenges facing independent producers or strategic direction for the CMPA. We also welcome your participation on any of the committees working to achieve our short and long-term goals.

André Rouleau Wins CMPA Producer’s Award at the Toronto International Film Festival

Interview with André Rouleau
CMPA:  I would like to begin by asking you about how you got started in the business. You worked as a lawyer for a few years before entering the production industry?
AR:  Well, I was a member of the bar, but I was never active as a lawyer. I was in real estate law. I was working with important investors around the world, so that was my practice at the end of the eighties and beginning of the nineties. Some of my clients were rich producers, film producers, and one of them said, “Ah, you should…you should…”

>>> Click here for a full length interview with André

André Rouleau accepts the 6th annual $10,000 CMPA Producer's Award. He was honoured at a special awards ceremony at the opening of the Toronto International Film Festival in Toronto on September 8th.

Committee News

CRTC Regulatory Sub-Committee— Since June, the CRTC released its decision regarding the Group Licence Renewals of the major English-language broadcast groups. It also released a report on convergence and announced the licence renewal process for the major French-language broadcasters. The CMPA also filed comments in the Over-the-Top services “fact-finding” process and in two smaller regulatory proceedings. Contact Jay Thomson.

CMF Working Group— The CMPA is actively participating in the CMF consultation process regarding key elements of the CMF's policies, practices and procedures. The CMPA's CMF Regional Task Force is also working towards tabling recommendations with the CMF regarding the English Production Incentive program. Contact Reynolds Mastin.

Terms of Trade Working Group— Over the past few months, the CMPA has been working to ensure that the recently negotiated Terms of Trade agreement with Astral, Corus, CTV, Rogers and Shaw Media is implemented effectively.   The CMPA held a series of widely attended workshops across the country this summer. Senior staff met with producers—both members and non-members— to help generate a better understanding of the deal. They also made it clear that there is a “doors open” policy to assist producers with any questions or disputes over the next year. Similar meetings have also been held with key funders and provincial funding agencies. The next step is to achieve a Terms of Trade deal with the CBC. Negotiations will resume later this month. Contact Reynolds Mastin.

Membership Development and Outreach Committee— The Terms of Trade “road-show” was also a boost to membership development and outreach. About forty per cent of the independent producers who registered for the sessions were non-members from nine different cities. The committee believes these, and further regional initiatives, will help grow the Association’s membership. The committee also continues to develop a framework review and services strategy to help retain and recruit new members. The report and recommendations will be presented to the next meeting of the Board later this fall. Contact Katie Jeffs
Mentorship Committee— The selection process is underway for both the Atlantic Mentorship Program and the Telefilm Producer Trainee Program. The CMPA continues to seek partnerships with private and public sector stakeholders in order to offer its members enhanced training and mentorship opportunities. Contact Susanne Vaas.

National Industrial Relations Committee

  • Staff is preparing for negotiations with IATSE in the provinces of Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Atlantic Canada as well as Camera Personnel in Ontario. An agreement with Camera Personnel in Ontario only will still allow CMPA members to maintain flexibility when choosing either IATSE or NABET for their productions.
  • HRSDC Temporary Foreign Worker Permits— Staff is organizing information sessions for members regarding the HRSDC Temporary Foreign Worker Permits. As reported previously, effective April 1, 2011 HRSDC and Citizenship and Immigration Canada will only allow individuals to obtain temporary foreign worker permits to work in Canada for a cumulative period of four years.
  • WGC IPA Negotiations— CMPA IR staff in Toronto and Vancouver are collaborating on drafting proposals for the re-negotiation of the IPA, which is set to expire on December 31, 2011. IR staff continues to reach out to members to hear about issues and areas of concern you would like to see addressed in these negotiations.
  • Canadian Federation of Musicians (CFM)— It now looks unlikely that an agreement can be reached with the CFM that would cover the scoring of music across Canada (outside Quebec). Talks were scheduled to begin in May but the CFM negotiator had to pull out under direction of the union’s international parent.
  • National IR staff resolved two grievances in the last quarter and continues to represent members in eleven other matters with the various unions and guilds. Contact Carol Anne Dacosta.

BC Producers’ Branch

  • CMPA-BC is participating in a cross-sectoral study on BC’s Creative Entertainment Economy. The Branch is also meeting with government and other stakeholders about the impact of the defeat of the HST. In addition, they will be presenting a Pre-Budget Submission as part of the BC Government’s 2012 Budget Process.
  • On the industry development front, CMPA-BC is co-presenting the second edition of “Merging Media Conference and Master Class” from October 27-28, 2011. Fifteen BC producers participated in Phase 1 of the LA Market Accelerator Program in early June and CMPA-BC facilitated more than 100 business meetings as part of B2B Meeting Program at SIGGRAPH 2011.
  • The CMPA-BC Industrial Relations staff will be busy negotiating new agreements with the DGC BC, the Joint Council and the UBCP in separate bargaining sessions scheduled over the Fall of 2011. They will also be attending the WGC bargaining currently scheduled to take place in November and December of 2011. Contact Liz Shorten.

Feature Film Committee— The Feature Film Committee is pleased to report that the sixth annual CMPA Producer’s Award was another resounding success. The winner, André Rouleau, won a cash price of $10,000. The award was presented at a special reception to mark the opening of the 36th Toronto International Film Festival on September 8th. Contact Marc Sequin.

International Business and Production Financing Committee— Eight Canadian independent producers took part in the third edition of the L.A. Pre-sale Pitch Session on August 9th, 2011. The aim of the initiative is to increase commercial opportunities in the U.S. for Canadian producers. Informal talks are underway to further enhance the visibility and scope of the event in the future. Contact Susanne Vaas.

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