Mentee: Jean-Bastien Niyigaruye
Kadidja Haïdara is the author of the award-winning series Le chalet, the most popular show of the last ten years on the VRAK channel, for which she received the 2015 Gémeaux Award for Best Script: Youth. A graduate of the INIS Television – Author Profile program, she was awarded the Louise Spickler Bursary of Excellence in 2010. That same year, she won the TOU.TV Writing Grant, which allowed her to write her first series, Les Béliers, depicting the world of Quebec college soccer in a hyper-realistic way. Nominated for two Gémeaux Awards, the series won the NUMIX for Best Production: Fiction and Drama in 2014. She then wrote three seasons of the comedy Quart de vie, broadcast on ICI TOU.TV, which takes a feminist look at the coming of age. Nominated for two Gémeaux Awards, the series won, in 2015, the NUMIX for Best Production: Fiction and Drama, in addition to being a finalist at the prestigious Banff World Media Festival. In 2016, the Women in Film, Television and Digital Media Association honoured her at its annual fundraising gala, which honours exceptional women who inspire and shine through their talent. In addition to working on the various projects she is developing, she will be responsible for the Writing Profile of the new INIS Mixed Program starting this fall.
Mentee: Patrice Jecrois
Jason Brennan is a proud member of the KitiganZibi Anishinaabeg community and President of the Gatineau-based Aboriginal production company Nish Media. Since 2005, NISH has produced more than 100 hours of documentaries, dramas and youth programming for several French and English Canadian channels. The fictional works “Le Dep”, “Rustic Oracle” and “L’Inhumain” have all been presented in Canadian theatres and selected in some of the most prestigious film festivals in the world. Most recently, Jason Brennan produced the mini-series “Pour toi Flora”, the first Aboriginal written, directed and produced drama for CBC, available since May 2022.
Mentee: Xiaorong Liu
Aonan is a co-founder of film production company GreenGround, focuses on producing films that are boundary pushing with high artistic merits, as well, of filmmakers who are visible minorities and from under-represented film communities. His latest production includes two poignant works of Denis Côté – HYGIÈNE SOCIALE, Best Director at Berlinale 2021 in the Encounters section and WILCOX , Locarno 2019; THE NAMES OF FLOWERS by Bahman Tavoosi, Jury Prize at Tallinn Black Night IFF 2019 and Best Feature at Venice Film Week 2020; documentaries PRIMAS by Laura Bari, TAMING THE HORSE by Tao Gu, and IN THE WAVES by Jacqueline Mills, winning awards at True/False, Mar del Plata, RIDM, DOXA, VIFF and Xining First, China. He is Canadian producer in spotlights at Cannes 2019 and alumni of Trans-Atlantic Partners 2019. He recently served as Executive Producer for the award-winning film Geographies of Solitude by Jacquelyn Mills, winner of 3 awards at Berlinale Forum 2022. Aonan is an active guest speaker at film schools and often serves as jury member at festivals and funds. He is also a co-founder of CineGround Media, a unique camera and post production hub in Montreal catering to local film productions and abroad.
Mentee: Chelsea Osei
Myriam Magassouba is a director, screenwriter and editor. After studying film at UQÀM, she completed a master’s degree in film production at Concordia University. She directed several award-winning short fiction films and essays and co-directed the documentary Sur le quai de la gare, which won the Pierre and Yolande Perrault Award for Best Documentary Hope at the Rendez-vous du cinéma québécois. Her short film Là où je suis received more than a dozen awards, including the Jutra for best short film. In parallel to her directing work, she collaborates with filmmakers as an editor on several short films and documentaries that have been noticed in national and international festivals. Her work has been recognized with a nomination for the Canadian Screen Awards for the editing of the documentary Fermières. In 2021, Myriam finished editing two feature films, Arsenault et fils by Rafaël Ouellet and Pas d’chicane dans ma cabane by Sandrine Brodeur-Desrosiers. She is currently working on the editing of documentaries by Annie St-Pierre and Sophie Bédard-Marcotte.
Mentee: Miguel Sorto
Movement inspires all of Stefan Verna’s creations; ‘Poeticizing our pain’ describes both his process and the impact he seeks with his filmmaking. Stefan started dancing in his late teens and later got involved in theatre before dedicating his professional life to cinema. His deep interest in Afro Culture, Politics and Dance fuels his body of work. A graduate of Concordia University’s Film Production program, Stefan Verna has been active in the film community as a Director, Scriptwriter, Director of Photography and Video Instructor to marginalized youth. As a director he has explored various filmmaking forms: documentary, fiction, music videos and dance films. His camera work has taken him to Nunavik, Cuba, France, Haiti, Mexico and the U.S and has been shown on various Canadian networks such as CBC TV, APTN, Canal D, Canal Evasion and Télé-Quebec. He is a founding member of Black on Black Films, a collective of Black filmmakers in Quebec and has been lecturing around the world about the history & aesthetics of Black Cinema for the last 5 years. His films have been showcased in International film festivals: Ice Storm Cabaret (2000), Chocolate City (2003), Poetry in Motion (2004), Diversidad: a Roadtrip to Deconstruct Diner (2011), Drawing Blank (2012), Equation of Imagination (2015), MONtreal: Jazz Stories (2018), Metamorph (2020). He is presently completing his second documentary feature called NOMAD’S LAND: a Documentary Rhyme, directing NIGHT WATCHES US at the NFB and in developing a feature film ON THIN ICE with Loaded Pictures.
Mentee: Wylem Decaille
Zita has been working in the production field for over 20 years. As a line producer and producer, she has overseen the production of several comedy specials, gala events, hidden camera shows, documentaries and fiction and variety series. In addition to the planning, development and production of audiovisual series, she has often been called upon to work on various mandates ranging from strategic planning to the production of large-scale events. Her experiences have allowed her to develop a solid expertise in production planning and management, content development, human resources management and project administration.
Mentee: Dieu Donné Racine
Miryam Charles is a Haitian-born director, producer and cinematographer living in Montreal. She has produced several short and feature films. She is also the director of several short films. Her films have been presented in various festivals in Quebec and internationally. She has just completed the production of This House, a hybrid feature film combining documentary and fiction that had its world premiere at the Berlinale this winter and won the Sylvestre Award at the Indielisboa.
Mentee: Sal Eigh
Mila Aung-Thwin is co-founder of Montreal’s EyeSteelFilm. Productions include Last Train Home (winner of 2 Emmy Awards); Up the Yangtze (Golden Horse Award winner); Rip: A Remix Manifesto (IDFA audience choice prize winner); and I Am the Blues (CSA winner). Most recently, he directed Let There Be Light (Big Sky Fest’s Artistic Vision winner) and co-edited Softie (Sundance Festival award for editing). He frequently mentors upcoming filmmakers – recent workshops include Guangzhou, China; Durban, South Africa; and Yangon, Myanmar.