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Mr. Young

LEO AWARDS: Brent Butt & Nancy Robertson Host Leo Awards on June 8th

Published May 29, 2013 on Vancouver is Awesome

Hometown comedy couple Brent Butt and Nancy Robertson are set to co-host the 15th anniversary of the Leo Awards, celebrating the best of B.C.-made film and television, at the Westin Bayshore Hotel on Saturday, June 8th. Expect more than the usual hijinks with professional comedians as hosts and and a crowd of outstanding homegrown nominees led by Vancouver born-and-bred Jessie James Miller’s feature film Becoming Redwood with 14 nominations, Vancouver-cop-from-the-future series Continuum with 16 nominations and filmed-in-Vancouver-and-Yellowknife aerial adventure series Arctic Air with 14 nominations.. For tickets, click here.

The 1970s era coming-of-age film Becoming Redwood‘s 14 nominations include well-deserved director and writing nods for Jesse James Miller and performance nods for Ryan Grantham as the young golf-obsessed long-haired title character Redwood; Jennifer Copping (Miller’s wife) as Redwood’s mother; Chad Willett (producer) as Redwood’s draft-dodging, pot-dealing father; Derek Hamilton as Redwood’s red-neck stepfather Arnold and Scott Hylands as Arnold’s basement-dwelling elderly father Earl. Miller shot the Vancouver International Film Festival’s most popular Canadian feature in rural Langley for 24 days in the late spring of 2011. By contrast, Random Acts of Romance, the only other motion picture nominee I’ve seen on screen, filmed in several downtown and East Van locations like the Waldorf Hotel, as befits a movie whose tagline is “Sex, Abduction, Stalking and You Thought Romance Was Dead” about interconnected Vancouverites. Director Katrin Bowen is nominated for the twisted romcom, as is Sonja Bennett for her performance as a wacky stalker.

Becoming Redwood production still – courtesy of Jesse James Miller

In the television category, Continuum dominates with 16 nominations for its first hit season, including nods for creator and UBC grad Simon Barry for his season finale script End Times about time traveller Kiera Cameron’s failure to stop “terrorist” group Liber8 from blowing up a downtown tower, a definitive moment in her corporations-rule-the-world future. Continuum digitally-imploded an Arthur Erickson-designed tower on West Georgia on screen and then filmed the aftermath on a blast-and-rubble set at CBC Vancouver.

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LEO AWARDS: Film BECOMING REDWOOD & TV series CONTINUUM & ARCTIC AIR Top 2013 Nominations

Last night’s Leo Awards nominations, celebrating the best of B.C.-made film and television, favour Jesse James Miller’s 70s-era coming-of-age film Becoming Redwood, Vancouver-cop-from-the-future TV series Continuum and northern adventure TV series Arctic Air. The many tweets of congratulations to all the nominees today are a great way to recognize B.C.’s creative talent ahead of tomorrow’s provincial election. So please go vote and as the hashtag says, #SaveBCFilm. 

Becoming Redwood‘s 14 nominations include well-deserved director and writing nods for Vancouver-born-and-raised Jesse James Miller and performance nods for Ryan Grantham as the young golf-obsessed long-haired title character Redwood; Jennifer Copping (Miller’s wife) as Redwood’s mother; Chad Willett (producer) as Redwood’s draft-dodging, pot-dealing father;  Derek Hamilton as Redwood’s red-neck stepfather Arnold and Scott Hylands as Arnold’s basement-dwelling elderly father Earl. Miller shot the Vancouver International Film Festival’s most popular Canadian feature in rural Langley for 24 days in the late spring of 2011.

Related: Jesse James Miller’s Becoming Redwood Opens at International Village

In the television category, Continuum dominates with 16 nominations, including nods for creator and UBC grad Simon Barry for his season one finale script End Times and for performances by Richard Harmon, Brian Markinson, Jennifer Spence and Liber8 “terrorist” Lexa Doig. Lead cop Rachel Nichols is not nominated but she is American and not considered a BC actor, even though she lives here for half-a-year each season and owns Vancouver Canucks season tickets (what more do you need?)

Over at Arctic Air, bona fide BC actors Kevin McNulty and Pascale Hutton are nominated for their lead performances on the filmed-in-Vancouver-and-Yellowknife aerial adventure series, two of 14 nominations for the CBC show. Read More »LEO AWARDS: Film BECOMING REDWOOD & TV series CONTINUUM & ARCTIC AIR Top 2013 Nominations

YVRShoots Series – Sitcom PACKAGE DEAL Live in Burnaby

Published November 9, 2012 on Vancouver is Awesome

Update: While taped in Burnaby, Package Deal is set in Toronto.

Partway through the live taping of sitcom Package Deal’s pilot episode last night I had to zone out for a bit, exhausted from laughing non-stop for hours. Of course the sitcom is laugh-out-loud funny, although the details are embargoed until after the premiere airs early next year on Citytv. I can tell you that the laughs for the acerbic Harland Williams’s flubbing of his lines were just as big as when he did it right. “That’s not the line,” Williams told the audience. “Stop laughing, I’m sensitive.”  Williams, more than anyone else, cracked up his fellow cast members on set. Meanwhile, wrangler/perfomer Dave Dimapalis kept us entertained  in the audience between takes by coaxing volunteers to play progressively lewder games. Bachelorette #1 in the Bachelor game quipped “100% down” when asked how she would label herself in a store. Is it any surprise the blindfolded bachelor picked her from three possible candidates? I was rooting for Bachelorette #2 , by the way, who described herself as “a cub not yet a cougar.”  And halfway through the taping,: pages came round with pizza slices from the Flying Wedge to keep our energy up.

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