Canadian Film Industry Analysis

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Canadian identity and presence in the realm of the film industry has experienced significant struggles. The most significant of obstacles is the geographical and language ties to the United States, the greatest economic investor in English-market movies. Because of this struggle, Canadians have sought to, and continue to seek, financial investments for production and distribution of Canadian films in order to become viable competitors in the arena of movie-making. One such institution, Telefilm Canada, has made significant impact through its mandates to financially back Canadian films in order to support the creation of cultural content and to “stimulate demand for those productions at home and abroad.” (Telefilm Canada, About) This essay aims…show more content…
The United States had such a monopoly over the film industry in Canada because Hollywood films were incredibly lucrative to distribute and show for both Americans, and movie theatre owners. “U.S. producers are in a superior position to supply the U.S. market, a market large enough to enable them to recover a substantial portion of the production cost” (McAnany and Wilkinson, 1996) By providing high budgets for films, and being able to earn those investments back, the United States was able to constantly invest in the film industry with no worry of economic downfall. With such high budgets, the U.S. was able to produce high-quality productions which most certainly catch the eye of Canadian consumers, as the alternative Canadian content was under-funded and produced films of a lower quality. Equipped with luxurious budgets, high production value, and significant international interest, it is easy to see why the U.S. had such an incredible grasp of the Canadian market. Canadian film production did not have the same private economic backing, and thus, held little competitive power in the production of English films due to the fact that only sub-par Canadian films could be produced with the funding available. After all, how is a cultural peasant supposed to compete with an imperialistic, content-producing…show more content…
To reflect CFDC’s involvement in privately funding television programs along with film, the institution changed it’s name to Telefilm Canada. Telefilm Canada implemented the Feature Film Fund in 1986, an incentive to boost audiences throughout the country by supporting the development, production and marketing of Canadian films that have the best chances of success in Canada. (Telefilm, Resources) A sister fund was created in 1988, the Feature Film Distribution Fund to further aid in distribution practices of Canadian movies by providing Canadian distributors with credit lines. This shifted the primary role of Telefilm from a subsidizing body, to the role of an investor, thus multiplying revenues and enabling the re-investment of profits to other movie projects. This long-term goal sought to “reinforce the sector by encouraging a consolidation of companies, and improve cooperation between distributors and producers, and thus to ensure a more effective marketing of Canadian films, especially to commercial movie theatres.” (MacAnany & Wilkinson, 1996) The role-shift of Telefilm encouraged economic growth through the change of focus from being a subsidizing body to an investor. The creation of the Feature Film Distribution Fund and the Feature Film Fund oiled the economics surrounding the marketing and distribution practices of Canadian cinema, thus

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