News photographer, Montreal Gazette
Dave Sidaway is a staff photographer at The Montreal Gazette, as well as free-lancing for other newspapers and services, such as: The Globe & Mail, The Winnipeg Sun, Reuters, and United Press Canada.His 36 years in news photography began during the days of B&W film and continues to today’s digital world. He has covered events from the banal to the Stanley Cup, the Grand Prix of Monaco, the San Fermin Festival in Pamplona, Spain and the famine in Ethiopia.
Graphic Artist, Montreal Gazette
Mary HughsonGraphic artist for 30 years at The Montreal Gazette newspaper, Mary Hughson produced the Crazy Talk Animations with her husband cartoonist, Terry Mosher (aka Aislin) for the Gazette’s online edition. Also with Aislin, she co-illustrated a collection of poetry, Finn’s Thin Book of Irish Ironies by Patrick Watson.
Director 3x Academy Award nominee, My Financial Career, The Railroader, Heavy Metal
Rising from humble roots in working-class London to garner three Oscar nominations, Gerald has been a key figure in animation for over fifty years. Gerald began his Canadian career at the National Film Board of Canada, where he directed the Oscar-nominated My Financial Career, and directed Buster Keaton in what would turn out to the be the silent film great’s final short, The Railrodder (1965). The following years saw collaborations with Harold Pinter, Donald Pleasance and Ringo Starr (he was an animator on Yellow Submarine). Gerald had three Oscar nominations for animation and live action under his belt when he was tapped by Ivan Reitman to direct Heavy Metal (1981), the cult animated feature for which he is perhaps best known. The film involved a team of over 1000 animators and crew working on multiple continents,Gerald’s irreverent, playful yet technically disciplined style continues to have a huge impact on animators working today. South Park dedicated an entire episode to Heavy Metal. Gerald is currently working on High Flight, an animated short based on the eponymous poem by downed WWII airman John Magee. He is a member of the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts.
“To his neighbours in the Eastern Townships community of West Brome, he is known as a jovial garlic farmer and builder of model airplanes. Fact is, however, that Potterton is something akin to a Forrest Gump in the sense that he has been smack in the middle of many animation milestones in the last century.” – Bill Brownstein, Montreal Gazette, November 5, 2015)
Cartoonist, Montreal Gazette
AISLIN is the name of Terry Mosher’s elder daughter, and the nom de plume that he has used for over forty-five years as the political cartoonist for Montreal’s English-language daily newspaper, The Montreal Gazette. Mosher is also the President emeritus of the Association of Canadian Editorial Cartoonists.
Mosher is a regular speaker on the topics of humour, history and the importance of cartooning as a communications tool. He has appeared at national conferences such as Idea City, the Banff Festival for The Arts, Montreal’s Canadian Club and numerous writers’ festivals. Mosher has also served as a judge and participant in International cartoon competitions and other gatherings, most recently in Portugal, Turkey, China, Australia Cuba, and South Korea.
From April 7th to August 13th, 2017, Montreal’s McCord Museum will host a retrospective of Aislin’s work entitiled Aislin: 50 Years of Cartooning – from Trudeau to Trudeau.
Co-Founder, CarpeDiem Film & TV
Marie-Claude Beauchamp has been active in the film and television industry for over twenty-five years. She is the driving force behind CarpeDiem Film & TV, which she founded in 2004, to bring quality family and children’s entertainment to audiences worldwide.
Her most recent project is the 3d stereoscopic animated feature film Snowtime!/La geurre des tuques (a.k.a Cleo) which which had worldwide success.
She specializes in international co-productions and is renowned as a producer who makes an extra effort to understand the special needs of her partners.
Cofounder, Nelvana Animation Studios
Clive was a cofounder of Nelvana Animation studios, with Michael Hirsch and Patrick Loubert. One of the titans of Canadian animation, Nelvana produced prolifically in the 1980s and 1990s including the animated series Tintin, White Fang, Care Bears along with feature films Rock and Rule (1982) and others. Nelvana produced the animated segment of the Star Wars Holiday Special that introduced the world to bounty hunter Boba Fett.
Nelvana was sold to Corus Media in 2000.
VR content producer/director
IN THE BEGINNING. My name is George Snow. I am a video artist from the late 80’s. In recent years I have been working with Tom van Vliet of the World Wide Video Festival on a panoramic movie developed from the works of Alberti, Piranesi and Escher. (www.george-snow.com). Unfortunately, although the panoramic movie was completed 5 years ago, there have never been the funds to exhibit it. So now my effort has involved moving the project to the Unity games engine and exporting it to an Oculus Rift VR headset.
AS IT WAS. My previous video art was commissioned by Channel 4, the BBC and the Arts Council. It has been shown in Video Brazil, Tate Liverpool, and MoMA New York. Stacks of other festivals but I can’t be bothered to mention them all.
AS IT IS. The first stage of the transformation is complete. In it’s present form the space can be navigated with a games controller and viewed on a conventional monitor. It is shortly to be built as an immersive VR experience using the Oculus VR headset.
AS IT WILL BE. Now. How do I develop this VR space? There are a number of options. The first being the elementary objective of any game. That is to search for something. In this case the Vanishing Point. Perhaps a clue will be found in a Muybridge cycle or in a steam train from an ancient Italian mine. In this world I have created a three machines. Two locomotives and Leonardo’s flying machine. Can these machines make sense of their environment, and by making sense of their environment can they make decisions leading to the successful attainment of their objective? Central to my theme of space enclosed and defined by architecture is the question ‘If Space, as we perceive it, is three dimensional can the same be thought of for Time?”
Secondly. The space I have created is HUGE. It really is big. This is because the world is enclosed by a stadium designed (but never built) by Alberti. The endless corridors provide space for virtual exhibits. This direction interests me a lot. Presently the ‘exhibition space’ consists of still art and Muybridge loops- but it could, with the support of a dedicated programmer, import live video feeds.
Founder, Fig55 (Productions Figure 55)
Pascal Pelletier of Figure 55 Productions has extensive experience in direction. Since founding Figure 55 in 2006, he has put his talent and expertise to work on custom creations as timeless as they are dazzling. He has been Director of Production and Development at Studio Plasma, where he is a partner, since 2007.
In 2014 Pascal produced the immersive visual and musical project «Harmonielehre» in collaboration with the SAT and the Montreal Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Kent Nagano.
Voice actor; President, Play Records
Melleny Melody (aka Melleefresh)
For over 20 years, Melleefresh, President of Toronto-based label Play Records, has been breaking new ground in Dance and Electro as a singer, songwriter, producer and DJ. Her brilliant work from ’05 – ’09 with deadmau5 (as duo Freshmau5) earned her a Juno nomination, and several Beatport and Billboard #1 hits.
Melleefresh is also Melleny Melody, voice actor and personality who has lent her talents to numerous animated shows over the years. Melleny played 3 characters on the world-renowned TV series, The Care Bears, and appeared in Inspector Gadget, Strawberry Shortcake, and many others.
Neil studied architecture before getting into making films. His first film A Sarajevo Diary was nominated for a British Academy of Film and Television Arts Award, and won a BAFTA with his title sequence for Channel 4 TV.
He has made several documentaries and short films which have been shown at festivals around the world and is now in pre-production for his first fiction feature The Assignment, and a feature documentary on African migrants travelling to Europe by boat.
Besides film, he has recently begun working on games, as he feels it is an excellent tool to tell stories and get a message across.
Anne is originally from Paris, France and has lived in Montreal since 1999. She has worked extensively with Megafun Productions to develop their production department of animated series, in partnership with such major French studios as Les Armateurs, Xilam, Gaumont-Alphanim, Futurikon and Ellipse Animation…
Her management background (she graduated from the École des Hautes Études Commerciales de Paris) as well as her passion for international partnerships made her produce over 25 animated series from 2000 through 2010 with many countries (France, Belgium, Luxembourg, Germany, Spain, Brazil). Along these years, Anne developed strong working relationships with animation studios based in various Asian countries: China, Vietnam, Taïwan and South Korea.
Director of Content, TELETOON
For the past 17 years, Athena has been an integral member of the TELETOON team. As Director of Content for TELETOON, Athena oversees content development, acquisitions and production for TELETOON’s English and French brands including TELETOON/TÉLÉTOON, TELETOON Retro/TÉLÉTOON Rétro, TELETOON at Night/TÉLÉTOON la Nuit, as well as Cartoon Network, along with their respective multiplatform services.
In her most recent role as Manager of Original Production for TELETOON, she was responsible for supervising the development and production of original programming for TELETOON and TELETOON at Night in English and French. Since joining TELETOON, Athena has been instrumental in the growth and success of such series as Dr. Dimensionpants, Detentionaire, Camp Lakebottom, Rocket Monkeys, the Total Drama Island franchise, Fugget About It and Têtes à claques (Knuckleheads).
Jonathan Bélisle has been an Interactions Poet & Web entrepreneur for 20 years. As a polymath, he blends together his skills as an interactive designer, User Research Director, creative technologist and an inspired teacher. He studied film narratology and mastered visual thinking before combining them with ethnographic methods and service design thinking. His diverse background enables him to approach complex problems in a playful manner when adding Human Touch to mobile devices and interactive storytelling to connected objects and media.
He is the founder of Hello, Architekt!, a Sensemaking & Changemaking Consultancy that helped the digital transformation of many enterprises, creator of Wuxia the Fox, a Research Affiliate at the Annenberg Innovation Lab of Southern California University, a professor of Experience Architecture at INIS Media School, and Chief Design Officer at SAGA, where he created the first OS for the Physical World.
Movement and Character Consultant
MYRNA works with animators and directors to develop physical behaviour, relationship to other characters, context within story, and anatomical detail — all the components that make animation truly alive and specific.
BY NOTICING the details of character, environment, and relationship, and exploring and refining the physicality of these details in shot preparation, imagined situations, reference, and team and one-on-one consultation, Myrna helps animators develop advanced skills for creating truly powerful visual and physical storytelling.
MYRNA WORKS with principles of movement, anatomy, shape, weight, breath, timing, gender, age, environmental elements, emotional condition, story, heightened moments (key framing), relationship, creature and object characteristics, choices in physical expression, transitional movement, and the involvement of text, props and choreography as they relate to animation.
MYRNA’S background is in dance and choreography, character and physical performance for theatre, film and TV, human behaviour and anthropology, anatomy, kinesiology, performance capture, and writing.
She has taught and consulted in the area of character behaviour and development, and visual storytelling at DREAMWORKS and DISNEY, as well as LOYOLA MARYMOUNT UNIVERSITY in Los Angeles, LUCASFILM and CG PROTEGE in Singapore, GOBELINS and ANNECY in France, the GOBELINS INTERNATIONAL MASTERCLASS PROGRAM worldwide, GRIFFITH FILM SCHOOL in Australia, THE ONE ACADEMY in Malaysia and THE NORMAL UNIVERSITY in Taiwan.
Hélène Rousse is a veteran casting director from Montreal, Quebec at Total Casting, having offices in Toronto as well, to offer multi-lingual dubbing services.
Over the past decade, Rousse has become the premier casting house specializing in voice casting & recording of video games and animation. She’s casted in a wide arrange of projects, from hundreds of audio books for kids and adults, to games like Spore or major animated TV series. As a guest at major game events and a panelist at ComicCon, she provides valuable insight into the world of casting and voice work.
As an experienced Studio Director, Rousse has learned to hone her craft through many challenging experiences inside and outside the booth. Her dubbing company Bad Words Lab is turning animated TV series into a selling product in several languages.
She is now in the midst of dubbing an animated film from Mexico and casting in Toronto for a major video game. From major feature films to a simple trailer voice, she can find the right talent for your project. See all credits online.
International Development, Society For Technological Arts (SAT), Montreal
After training in Art and Media Technologies with a post production specialization, Vincent started his career as a technical director for large scale events. He took his first steps in the field with Lalala Human Steps at the Laval Cosmodome and the Montreal Biosphere. He has collaborated with multimedia installations across the world. During this period, Vincent acquired a large body of knowledge in event and audiovisual production: projection, sound, lighting and special effects. He then directed a team of 50 artists and technicians in visual post production, sound and broadcast design.
His high level involvement on many TV series and newscasts established his reputation with some of Quebec’s most reputable production houses. Recently named as Director of Promotion & International Development at the Society For Technological Arts (SAT), from now on he will be involved with prestigious cultural events on a global scale.
Writer/Producer, Enchanted Thyme
Ariane Smith is an accomplished author and a 2016 Telly Award-winning writer/producer of The Peculiar Adventures of Willow B. Star and Enchanted Thyme – The Delicious Adventure Series. Both projects have gone on to garner additional awards, including a 2016 Gold “Remi.” Her NYC-based animation company is Enchanted Thyme Entertainment, and her characters can be found on the web and mobile devices in the form of celebrity-narrated, storybook poems.
She has appeared on NBC’s TODAY SHOW, MONEY MATTERS, THE ENTREPRENEURS NETWORK, and been featured in THE NEW YORK TIMES, THE DAILY NEWS, REUTERS, THE BOSTON GLOBE, and many other publications and radio shows. She’s been invited all over the world to speak about Enchanted Thyme Entertainment and her properties’ adaptability to traditional, new and emerging content delivery platforms. One of her favorite subjects is the merging of tech, finance and entertainment.
Executive Vice-President, Tricon Kids, Family & Animation
Frank Saperstein is an Annecy Award-winning and Primetime Emmy-nominated Executive Producer, Writer and Director, who most recently served as CEO/Executive Producer for his own boutique development and production shingle Surprise Bag, Inc. Previously, Frank served as SVP of Family Television for Entertainment One, SVP of Kids and Animation for Blueprint Entertainment, Co-CEO/Creative Director of PASI (Philippine Animation Studio, Inc.) and as a Development Executive with VH1/MTV Networks.
Frank’s credits include gender-bending classics Pee-Wee’s Playhouse, (CBS) and Ren & Stimpy, (Nickelodeon), as well as a stint as Producer/Director with Prince’s Paisley Park Studios. Mr. Saperstein earned an MFA from New York University – Tisch School of The Arts.
Head Writer and Executive Story-Editor, Arthur
Peter Hirsch is the head writer and executive story-editor for the television series, Arthur and the current head writer for Curious George. He has written for children’s television for over twenty years and has won seven Daytime Emmy Awards, two Silver New York Festival Medals and a Peabody Award. He has been a speechwriter, a travel writer, a playwright, an actor and is a graduate of Harvard University.