Telefilm Canada PITCH THIS!

Telefilm Canada PITCH THIS! returns to the Toronto International Film Festival for its ninth consecutive year!

In a live pitch environment, six participant teams have six minutes to pitch their feature-film idea to an audience of over 250 industry professionals. The winner will be selected by a jury of international industry experts. The prize is $10,000 to assist with costs related to project development.

TIME/DATE: Tuesday, September 9, 12:00pm to 1:30pm
VENUE: Sutton Place Hotel, 33rd Floor (955 Bay Street)

PITCH THIS! is hosted by Ennis Esmer

Ennis Esmer starred in Young People Fucking, which premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival® in 2007 and prompted the release of the politically charged Bill C-10 which caused a fervor in the Canadian film industry in 2008. His next role is Oz, the partner of a telepathic paramedic on The Listener, coming to NBC and CTV in October 2008. Other credits include cantankerous janitorZoltan on Billable Hours and host of late night variety hour The Toronto Show.


The 2008 Telefilm Canada PITCH THIS! finalists are:

Blood Quantum
The dead are reanimating outside the isolated Mi’gmaq reserve of Red Crow, forcing its immune Indian inhabitants to defend their reserve from hordes of invading white corpses.

John Christou
John is an independent producer. His recent credits include the smash hit documentary Up the Yangtzeand The Colony which was one ofCanada’s Top Ten Short Films of 2007. In 2008, John is developing a slate of feature films and feature documentaries for his new production company, Prospector Films.

Jeff Barnaby
Jeff Barnaby was born on a Mi’gmaq reserve in Listijug, Quebec. He has worked as an artist, poet, author and filmmaker. His films include From Cherry English (04) and The Colony (07). Jeff is currently in development on his debut Feature, Blood Quantum.

The Cinderellis
Gina Cinderelli's life is no fairytale - she cooks, she cleans, fills and refills her evil Stepmother's glass of Chianti. Can a party invite and a glassy slipper change her life forever?

Michael Mosca
A true Québec beauty, Michael had pouffy blonde hair – until '97 when he gave up hairspray in favour of a slicked-back ponytail when he moved from the exhibition circuit to distribution and production. Today Michael continues to be one of Canada’s leading film executives, sporting $50 crew cuts.

Franca Visconti
Those who know her best can attest Franca's hair has a tendency to spontaneously explode. A Montreal native, she lived mostly in her hallucinations before finding herself in Hollywood. As “chick in charge of development”, she especially enjoys circling spelling mistakes in red and stamping those scripts “return to sender.”

Lori Elberg
Growing up in the punchline that is New Jersey, Lori's career as a Hollywood extra was cut short when directors realized she could never blend in with flaming red curls. Moving on to an award-winning writing-directing career, she also landed a Latin Grammy nomination despite her limited knowledge of Spanish.

Tanya Bershadsky
Russia born, Brooklyn raised Tanya was destined to ridicule.  Her hair was once big. Very big. This proved an advantage when she realized she had no choice but to write comedy. Having produced several off-broadway shows, she’s most proud of her award-winning, network attention-drawing short films. Tanya's hair is now flat. Very, flat.

Don’t Talk To Irene
In a hostile town with no one to talk to, a friendless but unapologetically weird twelve- year-old girl successfully infiltrates the close-knit senior citizen community in town. It's not your typical coming-of-age tale – it's got dentures!

Pat Mills
Pat Mills is a Toronto-based filmmaker. In 2007, he was a recipient of the NSI Drama Prize for his short (Marjorie) and a TIFF Talent Lab participant, where he made Pat's First Kiss on a cell phone. (The film is playing in the 2008 Short Cuts Canada Programme.) His latest projects are 5 Dysfunctional People in a Car (a Bravo!FACT) and Do You Believe Me, an interactive teen sci-fi web series for The Nightingale Company.

Forever 15
Lucy is a seemingly normal teenager, with a deadly secret – she is a vampire eternally trapped in the body of a fifteen-year-old girl. And growing up is hard to do when you’re immortal.

Eva Madden
Eva Madden is a writer/director currently based in Halifax, Nova Scotia. After studying at Concordia University’s film school and the National Screen Institute of Canada, Eva has completed several award-winning short films. She’s currently developing her first feature, Sweet Nothing, with Halifax’s Idlewild Films.

Friends of the Museum
Friends of the Museum is a sophisticated romantic-comedy about making babies and stealing art.

Lanan Adcock
Lanan Adcock is a writer, director and three-time recipient of The Harold Greenberg Fund. Her directorial debut, Vengeance, premiered at the Fantasia Film Festival in Montreal.

Daniel Perlmutter
Daniel Perlmutter is a writer, director and Head of Production at Automatic Vaudeville Studios. He’s been a television writer for the past eight years. His latest film, Beware of Dog, was recently accepted into the Atlantic Film Festival.

Together Daniel and Lanan are currently developing the comedy television series On Again/Off Again.

Horn tells the story of how a little adultery causes a lot of trouble for three generations of one West Indian family. Moonstruck meets Bend it like Beckham in this comedy about infidelity.

Shernold Edwards

Shernold is the co-executive producer of Global'sDa Kink in My Hair II. She is a former CTV executive, a CFC graduate, and has an MFA from Columbia University. Shernold was in the 2007 TIFF Talent Lab and the Banff Festival's 2008 Canwest Showrunner Program. She was recently named one of Playback Magazine's Next 25.

Prior to the live event, the finalists have the opportunity to work with coaches who help them hone their pitches.

The 2008 Pitch Coaches are:

Anne Carey
Anne Carey, together with partner Ted Hope, founded New York production company, This is that. Specializing in unique content and innovative storytelling, This is that has produced fifteen films in its five-year existence. Carey, who was honoured as one of Variety’s Top Ten Producers to Watch For in 2004, previously produced films and was head of development for Good Machine for nearly a decade.

Joe Pichirello
Joe Pichirallo, a veteran studio executive and producer, oversees film for The Gold Company, a production company headed by one of the industry’s leading talent managers, Eric Gold. Pichirallo recently produced The Secret Life of Bees, which is screening at the Festival this year. Pichirallo has also worked as head of feature film production and development for Will Smith's company Overbrook Entertainment and was a senior executive at Fox Searchlight Pictures and Universal’s Focus Features.

Robin Smith
Robin Smith is the founder of KinoSmith, a distribution, production and marketing consultation company. Robin brings a strong background of over seventeen years of film, video and arts-related work to his company. KinoSmith has had recent success with the theatrical release of the Canadian documentary Up the Yangtze, which grossed over $600,000 domestically. Robin is currently teaching Feature Film & Video Distribution and Movie Marketing courses at Ryerson University.

Howie Wiseman
Howard Wiseman is a WGC Award-winning writer for his radio adaptation of  Mordecai Richler’s Barney’s Version, and a co-adapter of Richler’s novel, Urbain’s Horseman, (CBC TV miniseries). His feature screenplay, My Family Treasure, was produced in Moscow. He has written and/or directed over thrity episodic TV episodes. Wiseman is an assistant professor in screenwriting at York University.

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