2015 Festival Panels

We’re  excited to bring you this year’s line-up of top-notch panels and workshops. Below is a few of our confirmed panels for this year. We’ll be adding more as we get closer to the festival.

Q & A with Val Creighton presented by CMF

Friday, May 22, 2015 — 9:45AM – 11:45AM

Join us for a conversation with Val Creighton, President and CEO of the Canada Media Fund as we frankly discuss the state of the union and the Let’s Talk TV, CRTC report. Questions welcomed.


  • Val Creighton – Canada Media Fund
  • Daniel Cross – EYESTEELFILM

Creative Saskatchewan Networking Lunch

Friday, May 22, 2015 — 12:00PM – 1:30PM

Our annual lunch with community members, filmmakers, and industry members. Join us as we celebrate past contributors to the Yorkton Film Festival and award our festival builder and volunteer awards.


  • J.P. Ellson – Creative Saskatchewan

Max Drama at a Micro Budget

Friday, May 22, 2015 — 1:30PM – 2:30PM

The path from short films to feature length is fraught with peril. Opportunities for filmmakers to grow professionally and create their own feature length films are few & far between. Discover how Telefilm Canada and the National Screen Institute are providing a launch pad for emerging dramatic talent and hear from two filmmakers succeeding on their journey.


  • Brendon Sawatzky – NSI Canada


  • Lauren Davis – Telefilm
  • Maureen Bradley – Writer/Director
  • Brian Stockton – Writer/Director


Friday, May 22, 2015 — 2:45PM – 3:45PM

Test your pitching skills and be judged by an esteemed panel of broadcasters, directors and distributors. This is not your regular pitch session so leave your pitches at home. Be brave and spin the Wheel of Spin and see what idea you and your team will be forced to pitch.


  • Charlotte Engel – Rock Yenta Productions

The National Film Board in 2015

Friday, May 22, 2015 — 4:00PM – 5:00PM

As Canada’s public producer, the NFB works closely with talented artists and creative teams from across the country to create world-class documentary films, animated films, and interactive projects. Join us as we discuss our public mandate, showcase some of our new work, and talk about how we can work with filmmakers on the Prairies.


David Christensen – National Film Board

Up, Up, & Away: A look at the dynamic world of UAV’s

Saturday, May 23, 2015 — 10:30AM – 12:00PM

The hottest production tool going is the Unmanned Aerial Vehicle or UAV. Commonly referred to as drones, these flying camera platforms are filling our skies and causing governments and regulators to scramble for some measure of control. We look at the blessings and curses of this erupting technology.


  • Tom Davidson
  • Jack Tunnicliffe – Java Post Productions

Creative Saskatchewan Broadcasters’ Lunch

Saturday, May 23, 2015 — 12:00PM – 1:30PM

Looking for the right partner or buyer for your project? Sit down with broadcasters, development executives, distributors and executive producers over lunch to find out what they’re looking for, ask questions and talk about your projects.


  • Brandice Vivier – Bell
  • Bruce Glawson – Discovery
  • Charlotte Engel – CBC
  • Joanne McDonald – Rogers
  • Maureen Levitt – Superchannel
  • Melanie Nepinak Hadley – APTN
  • Will Dixon – City Saskatchewan

Big Characters, Big Worlds, Big Challenges: Making Great Documentary Series

Saturday, May 23, 2015 — 1:30PM – 2:30PM

From Yukon Gold and Ice Pilots on History to Coldwater Cowboys and Highway Thru Hell on Discovery, documentary series focusing on big characters in big settings are BIG audience favourites. But, how do you find the characters – and turn their day-to-day lives and jobs into compelling, dramatic documentary. Join a panel of Canadian doc series producers and broadcasters to discuss what makes a great documentary series, how to find great characters and worlds, and how one off documentary filmmakers can make the move into this huge and growing part of the documentary world.


  • Robert Hardy – Force Four Entertainment


  • Bruce Glawson – Discovery Channel
  • Chris Triffo – Partners in Motion
  • Kevin Eastwood – Optic Nerve
  • Mark Miller – Great Pacific TV
  • Scott Leary – Farpoint Films


Liberating Parameters

Saturday, May 23, 2015 — 2:45PM – 3:45PM

Using examples of recent short films and his own feature, Roy discusses how embracing non-budgetary restrictions during the writing process can act as a liberating device that then fuels the creative process. While “restrictive liberty” might sound like Orwelian Newspeak, Roy posits that the process ignites and focuses the filmmaker’s imagination.


  • Roy Cross – Concordia University, Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema

A Conversation with Hot Docs

Saturday, May 23, 2015 — 4:00PM – 5:00PM

As business models change and new distribution streams open up this session looks at the new realities of getting your film made and seen. Crowdfunding, alternative financing, marketing, distribution, festival strategy and how Hot Docs can help will all be discussed in this informal conversation.


  • Stephanie McArthur – Hot Docs
  • Alex Rogalski – PAVED Arts, Hot Docs, Calgary International Film Festival

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