Denys Arcand’s Testament
by Ralph Lucas – Publisher
(July 28, 2021 – Montréal, QC) Denys Arcand turned 80 in June of this year but shows no signs of slowing down. Yesterday the Quebecor Fund Board of Directors announced a number of projects that will receive funding under its film production support program, and Denys Arcand’s Testament is one of those films.
Being produced by Cinémaginaire and distributed by Les Films Séville, Testament gets the Arcand treatment as he turns his attention to the state of the world today. Described as a “biting satire” of our times, the film takes on political correctness, identity politics, protest, cultural scandal, activism, media storms and other controversies, as it follows an elderly man who has lost faith in humanity but finds his bearings again and rediscovers happiness.
Testament is one of four projects selected in the 22nd round of the Film Production Assistance Program, submissions for which closed on May 25, 2021. The following Canadian producers and distributors will share a total of $540,000: Amalga Créations Médias inc., Cinémaginaire inc., Go Films, Attraction Images Productions XVI inc. and Les Films Séville inc.
Here’s a short take on the other three films receiving support:
Ru focuses on 11-year-old Tinh, who has fled Vietnam with her family aboard a makeshift boat. Now, after surviving a thousand perils, she must adjust to her new life in Québec. Ru is a film adaptation of the acclaimed novel of the same name by Kim Thúy. It is being produced by Amalga Créations Médias inc., and will be distributed by Les Films Séville Inc.
Le Plongeur is set in Montréal the winter 2002. A 19-year-old student and heavy-metal fan, Stéphane, is on a downward spiral. He has become addicted to gambling, fallen into debt and lost his apartment. He gets a job as a dishwasher at a restaurant, where meets a cast of eccentric characters and becomes swept up in the swirl of life at a restaurant during the pre-Christmas rush.
Le Plongeur is produced by Go Films and will also be distributed by Les Films Séville Inc.
L’Arracheuse de temps is based on a story by Fred Pellerin. Set in 1988, an 11-year-old boy in the town of Saint-Élie-de-Caxton is worried his ailing grandmother may die. The old spinner of yarns tries to convince her grandson that Death does not exist. Her tale takes us back to 1927, the year in which a group of villagers managed to outwit Death and escape its clutches.
L’Arracheuse de temps is being produced by Attraction Images Productions XVI Inc., and distributed by Les Films Séville Inc.
Since it was launched in September 2010, Quebecor Fund’s Film Production Assistance Program (which previously included event production) has granted 99 projects a total of nearly $16 million, including nearly $15 million for 85 film projects and more than $1 million for 14 event projects.
Quebecor Fund also has an Export Assistance Program (EXAP), which supports export initiatives by funding the development of audiovisual content adapted for non-Québec and international markets as well as marketing efforts. Since its inception in March 2014, more than $9.7 million has been invested in 41 export business models with 27 partner companies, and the Fund’s partner, the Canada Media Fund (CMF), has invested an additional $2.5 million since 2017. In this 18th round, the CMF and Quebecor Fund are each investing $150,000, for a total of $300,000, in the business model of Happy Camper Média inc.
Since June 2020, Quebecor Fund has also granted specific funding, now in its 3rd round, to promote female shareholding in the partner companies that receive EXAP support. In this round, KO Distribution inc., will receive an $80,000 grant to support the transfer of shares to key female personnel. To date, support with a total value of $240,000 has been extended under this component.
SOURCE: Quebecor Fund
Ralph Lucas is the founder and publisher of Northernstars.ca. He began writing about film and reviewing movies while in radio in Montreal in the mid-1970s.