Nexus Media Inc. began in 1999 with the intention of producing international documentaries that would resonate with Canadians. Then, as now, our preference was to have a limited production capacity so that we could work with freelancers who were the best in their fields. We have always been open to partners who are like-minded. Looking backward, that approach has served us well. It allowed us maximum flexibility in a very rapidly changing production and distribution community. It allowed us to venture into unchartered territory with confidence.
Flexible. We worked with young adults in Eskasoni, helping them to use media to explore and address health issues. We provided consulting services to McGill University to faciliate a development project in Indonesia. We partnered with Queens University to assist with a democracy-building project in Kiev.
Experienced. With our three decades of production experience, today much of our time is spent on the production of long-form television documentaries. Our work has been broadcast in Canada by CBC, Vision TV, Access Alberta, SCN, TVO, and iChannel. Our most recent release is Exporting Democracy? which has been broadcast in Canada on Vision TV, iChannel and SCN.
Creative. With an award from the Canadian Studies Directorate, we developed a concept for the children’s series, Pillars of Freedom, to introduce young Canadians to the ideas behind our democracy. With Pillars we formed a partnership with Smiley Guy Studios in Toronto and to date we have produced two seasons of shows and are planning a third. Pillars, Season 1, was nominated for a Gemini.
Our niche. With few exceptions, we focus our attention and resources on democracy promotion and civics education. We produced the feature television documentary, Exporting Democracy? , and we are developing a sequel, Troubles with Democracy. We have developed Season3 of Pillars of Freedom. But what is most exciting is the possibility of working with new partners and new technologies to improve the quality of engagement in our democracy at all levels of society.
I have over four decades of experience in the film and television industry.
I began my career in a motion picture lab(Eastern Film Labs) and then, after graduating from Dalhousie University with an English degree, I spent seven years with the National Film Board of Canada with postings in Halifax, Charlottetown, and Calgary. When I left the NFB it was to to write and produce independent documentaries.
I did not want to confine myself to non-fiction; in 1989, I was one of three producers from across the country to graduate from the National Screen Institutes Dramalab program.
Throughout my career, it has been important to me to make a contribution to the industry. I am a past president of the Nova Scotia Film Producers Association and presently a member of DOC Atlantic. I was also a founding member of the Atlantic Film Makers Cooperative and the Calgary Film Makers Coop.
The focus of my recent work has been democracy. We just completed Exporting Democracy?, a feature documentary filmed in Tanzania, Indonesia and Ukraine. It was broadcast by Vision TV, iChannel and SCN. I have developed a new documentary, Troubles with Democracy which will look at the current recession in democracy and special challenges for the future of democracy.
For several years my company Nexus Media Inc. ran health-related youth programs in the First Nation community of Eskasoni, using media as a tool for self-awareness.
Throughout my career, education, and the role of media in facilitating learning, have been abiding interests for me. As the originator and co-producer of the childrens series, Pillars of Freedom, these two interests converge. This series, broadcast by TVO, is about to enter its third season. Season 1 was nominated for a Gemini. Working with education experts from across the country, we developed study guides for Season 1 and we are currently working with the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education to develop guides for Season 2.
Selected Screen Credits:
The Rain Forest, a Report from Costa Rica (tv half-hour)(Producer) Not by Choice (NFB short drama) (Associate Producer) A Child’s Guide to Government(Animation/Live Action) (Writer/Producer/Director) Alana (tv half-hour) (Producer) Walter(TV hour) (Producer) Coral Divers Say No to Cyanide (Producer/Director)People of the Reefs (TV hour) (Producer/Director) In the Village ( TV half hour)(Producer Director) Guru in the Arctic ( TV half hour)(Writer/Producer) Pillars of Freedom ( TV Series: 20 episodes) Exporting Democracy? ( TV feature) ( Writer, Producer)