It should be pointed out that the the Academy has had less than stellar success with some of its shows over the past few years. The Genie Awards in particular had fallen on hard times. Viewership for the Genies had slipped to a point where they simply ceased to matter. If the industry was going to pay tribute to Canada's filmmakers part of that deal requires a large, appreciative audience. The Gemini Awards, which concentrated on the television industry had far more success but the categories were vast and the number of awards to be handed out created a situation where only the highlights of the top awards were broadcast at the end of a three day awards marathon.
"The Canadian Screen Awards are a true reflection of the multi-platform universe of today,”
said Academy Chair Martin Katz. “Through the Canadian Screen Awards, the Academy will celebrate our talent and our productions with our industry and the Canadian public in one major national CBC broadcast,” Katz added.
Academy CEO Helga Stephenson said the new Canadian Screen Awards are a direct result of industry demand. “The industry has been asking for this change for some time. We opened up the conversation with our Members and other participating groups, consulted a report on the Academy prepared by the Schulich School of Business at York University and spoke with our broadcast and funding partners. As a result, the Board of Directors made the decision to merge the shows and a new chapter in the Academy’s history began,” said Stephenson.
The Academy Board of Directors asked Endeavour Marketing to undertake a branding process for a new name and to design a new award statue. Endeavour began a series of focus groups and stakeholder interviews to arrive at the Canadian Screen Awards which then tested positively within the industry.
“We wanted the new awards’ name to be accessible while retaining the legacy and pedigree of our industries that is prestigious, elegant and authoritative,” says Barry Avrich, President, Endeavour Marketing and ACCT Board Member. “Canadian Screen Awards reflects the pride we have in our screen industries, all of which have resonated with superlative content, nationally and internationally. We wanted the statue to reflect the immersive nature of entertainment while celebrating both the excellence of the big and the small screens.”
“We believe that a nickname for the statue may emerge over time as it has for other major awards in the world. Our ultimate aim is for the Canadian public to identify with these awards, to experience Canadian pride in these awards and to make it crystal clear what we are celebrating every year,” said Stephenson.
The annual Prix Gémeaux will continue to
celebrate French-language television and digital media on Radio-Canada, with this year’s show on Sunday Sept. 16, 2012.
Established in 1979, the Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television is a national, non-profit, professional association dedicated to the promotion, recognition and celebration of exceptional achievements in Canadian film, television and digital media. Unifying industry professionals across Canada, the Academy is a vital force representing all screen-based industries.