Telefilm Canada

Telefilm Canada
Crown Corporation
Industry Film
Founded Montreal, Quebec (1967)
Headquarters Montreal, Canada
Products funding for audiovisual industry in Canada
Owner Government of Canada
Website Telefilm Canada website

Telefilm Canada is a Crown corporation reporting to Canada's federal government through the Minister of Canadian Heritage. Headquartered in Montreal, Telefilm provides services to the Canadian audiovisual industry with four regional offices in Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal and Halifax.


As one of the Canadian government's principal instruments for supporting Canada's audiovisual industry, Telefilm Canada's primary mandate is to finance and promote through its various funds and programs. Telefilm's role is to foster the commercial, cultural and industrial success of Canadian productions and to stimulate demand for those productions both at home and abroad.[1] Telefilm also administers the programs of the Canada Media Fund.


Telefilm Canada administers the Canadian government’s coproductions, enabling Canadian filmmakers and their international counterparts to coproduce films and television programs that enjoy the status of national productions in each of the respective countries.[2]


Headquartered in Montreal, Telefilm provides bilingual services to its clients through four offices located in Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal and Halifax.

The Atlantic Regional office, in operation since 1984 from Halifax, services New Brunswick, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island.

The Quebec Regional office is located in the Montreal head office and serves the province of Quebec.

The Ontario Regional office, in operation since 1968 from Toronto, serves both Ontario and Nunavut.

The Western Regional office, in operation since 1984 from Vancouver, serves the Western provinces of British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, the Northwest Territories and the Yukon.



In 1967, founding the Canadian Film Development Corporation (CFDC), the Canadian government allocates $10 million in support of the feature film industry. Michael Spencer is named the first executive director of the CFDC, which by then includes offices in Montreal and Toronto.


By 1976, the Canadian government has increased the CFDC’s budget to $25 million annually, at which point the decision is made to finance the corporation with an annual parliamentary appropriation.


The early 1980s sees the CFDC’s budget increased yet again and the creation of the Canadian Broadcast Program Development Fund to revitalize Canadian television programming. At the time, approximately 85% of all prime time programming on Canadian television is imported from other countries—namely the US. Under the direction of André Lamy, in 1984 the CFDC is renamed “Telefilm Canada” to better reflect the organization’s full range of activities in both the film and television industries.

With the creation of the Feature Film Fund aimed at supporting feature films by Canadian filmmakers and the Feature Film Distribution Fund that makes credit lines available to Canadian distributors, Telefilm Canada takes a central role in the development and growth of Canadian cinema around the world.


Now under the executive direction of François Macerola, the Canada Television and Cable Production Fund is created. The Fund is a private-public partnership between the federal government of Canada and the cable and satellite television industry, with Telefilm administering the Equity Investment component of the Fund. By the end of the 1990s, in 1998, Telefilm Canada creates a five-year, $30-million multimedia fund, aptly-named The Multimedia Fund, with which to support Canadian work in the digital age. The Fund helps Canadians in multimedia to compete effectively in the new technologies arena.


With the new millennium, the Canadian government implements a new Canadian Feature Film Policy, From Script to Screen, that effectively creates the Canada Feature Film Fund (CFFF) to be managed by Telefilm Canada. Beginning April 1, 2001, with an annual budget of $100-million, the CFF’s primary objective is to build larger audiences in Canada and abroad for Canadian feature films with improved distribution and marketing. Also that year, Telefilm Canada announces guidelines for the Canada New Media Fund, replacing the Multimedia Fund. Budgets grow from $6 million, to $9 million, and now sit at $14 million annually. The latter half of the decade brings about other changes for Telefilm.

In 2005, the Minister of Canadian Heritage announces a new collaboration between the organization and the Canadian Television Fund and, with it, renewed funding of $100 million for Canadian television programming. While the Board of the Canadian Television is responsible for the governance of all programs, Telefilm heads up the administration and delivery of the CTF programs.[3]


The 2012 Canadian federal budget cut funding for the National Film Board of Canada and Telefilm Canada by 10%. Today, following a new four-year plan, Telefilm has made stimulating demand for Canadian screen-based content one of its top priorities.[4]

Key people

Executive Directors

Chairpersons of the Board

Key works


Happy Birthday to Me (1981) (released by Columbia Pictures) Heavy Metal (1981) (released by Columbia Pictures) Jésus de Montréal (1989) (released by Cineplex Odeon Films, Denys Arcand

Crash (1996), David Cronenberg

The Sweet Hereafter (1997), Atom Egoyan

Le Violin rouge (1998), François Girard

Les Triplettes de Belleville (2003), Sylvain Chomet

La Grande séduction (2003), Jean-François Pouliot

Les Invasions barbares (2003), Denys Arcand

Away From Her (2006), Sarah Polley

(Julie Christie)

Eastern Promises (2007), David Cronenberg (British co-production)

Blindness (2008), Fernando Meirelles

Adoration (2008), Atom Egoyan

A Dangerous Method (2011), David Cronenberg

See also


  1. "About Telefilm". Telefilm Canada.
  2. "Coproduction guidelines". Telefilm Canada.
  3. "History". Telefilm Canada.
  4. "Corporate Plan". Telefilm Canada.
  5. "History". Telefilm Canada.
  6. "History". Telefilm Canada.
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