Bell Media Names Former CBC-er as Independent Production Executive
Tom Hastings is the new Production Executive, Independent Production, Drama, at Bell Media.
Reporting to Trish Williams, Director, Independent Production, Drama, he will work on the development and production of drama series and movies for Bell Media’s conventional and specialty channels.
His extensive experience in drama productions is described as a significant asset to the Bell Media Independent Production team, whose focus includes the development of strong content by genre and bringing compelling ideas from concept to reality.
Hastings joins Bell Media from CBC where he was the Creative Head of CBC Drama, responsible for the development of many Canadian and international TV movies, mini-series, and drama series, including Arctic Air. Previously, he worked as a production executive at Alliance Atlantis Communications Inc., working closely with The Food Network, HGTV, and National Geographic Channel Canada.
The appointment is effective immediately.
# # #
TV Personality to Host Canadian Wireless Trade Show 2012
The Canadian Wireless Trade Show 2012 reports that radio and TV personality Marc Saltzman will be its trade show host for the two-day international event.
Saltzman writes syndicated tech columns for Gannett ContentOne, www.USAToday.com, www.CNN.com, Yahoo!, Toronto Star, URmagazine, and even Playboy.
With Canadian start-ups playing more of an important role in the online community, the Canadian Wireless Trade Show -- Canada's biggest B2B tech, telecom, and wireless networking event -- prepares to unveil the latest and greatest tech products, downtown Toronto at the Direct Energy Centre Hall D, September 12th - 13th between 9am - 5pm.
All attendees will get to network face-to-face with over 4000 industry enthusiasts and over 120 leading exhibitors; including, Telus Mobility, Mobilicity, Public Mobile and OtterBox, to just name a few.
The Direct Energy Centre is Canada's largest exhibition and convention centre; covering over 1-million square feet of space, setting the stage for the Canadian Wireless Trade Show keynote speeches and wireless seminars.
The Canadian Wireless Trade Show 2012 is Canada's number one source for tech, telecom, and wireless networking and is sponsored by Sphere 3D, Wireless Xplosion, and Alliance Corporation.
There will also be free seminar and speaking sessions going on throughout the two day event some of which include Tony Lacavera the CEO of WIND Mobile, Darrick Li from comSCORE to present the "State of the Canadian Mobile Nation", "It's an Android World" presented by Samsung and Mobilicity and many more.
# # #
News Anchor Celebrates 35 Years as Citytv Celebrates 40
Citytv has honoured award-winning veteran Toronto news anchor Gord Martineau for 35 years of dedication and service. Currently the anchor of Citytv’s flagship newscast, CityNews at Six, Martineau joined the Citytv family in September 1977 and has since become a pillar of the station’s news brands, and one of Toronto’s most recognized news anchors.
Footage from some of Martineau’s early years at Citytv will air as part of a five-part series to celebrate Citytv’s 40th anniversary on September 28. The special coverage will begin airing Monday, September 24 during the newscasts on CityNews at Five, CityNews at Six and CityNews Tonight on Citytv and CityNews Channel. The series will look back on the evolution of Citytv, and feature highlights of the station’s most memorable moments.
Throughout his illustrious career, Martineau has celebrated with and guided Torontonians through the day’s biggest headlines at home and abroad. From the Toronto blackout to the excitement of the Toronto Blue Jays World Series wins, reporting overseas on the ground in Haiti soon after the devastating earthquake hit the country to covering Canada’s troops on the front lines in Afghanistan, Martineau has brought viewers some of the most impactful local, national, and international stories.
“Gord’s commitment to delivering world-class news to Torontonians is evident in the passion he brings to his newscasts,” said John Hinnen, Vice-President of News, Rogers Media. “Gord is a true leader in this community and we couldn’t be more proud to have him as part of our leading news team.”
A leading figure in Canada’s news broadcast industry, Martineau also devotes much of his time to a number of local charities, most notably the Herbie Fund, a foundation in support of The Hospital for Sick Children. Over the past decade Martineau has traveled around the world to meet with former patients who received life-saving surgeries at SickKids made possible by this fund. He currently serves as the foundation’s Goodwill Ambassador.
“I am honoured to be recognized by my extended Citytv family for my 35 years of service,” said Gord Martineau, Anchor, CityNews. "Citytv has always given its reporters latitude, thereby providing the opportunity to report events from different perspectives which produces great journalism."
Since joining Citytv in 1977, the Montreal-native has received prestigious awards honouring his work – including a Gemini Award for “Canada’s Best News Anchor” and RTNDA Canada Lifetime Achievement Award in 2007. Martineau was also recently recognized with a Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee medal in June 2012. Before joining Citytv, Martineau held a variety of roles in television and radio news in Montreal and Halifax, including weekend anchor at an English news and entertainment station in Montreal.
# # #
MobileMonday Toronto Co-Founder Launches Canadian Tech Start-up Portals
Alexander Bosika, MobileMonday Toronto Co-Founder, has launched a suite of tech start-up portals to help new and emerging companies connect with other stakeholders in the start-up ecosystem outside of regular industry events through an online visual database that can track tech start-up communities.
"The start-up tech community is never at a standstill," Bosika said. "Beyond the meetings, it's been very difficult to discover and connect with early-stage companies for collaboration or business development opportunities. Too often, I've seen Canadian tech start-ups miss at efforts to connect locally and build mutually beneficial opportunities in the same backyard," Alex added. At a very basic level, our start-up communities need a starting point and I believe a very simple portal is a good start. What we need next is a groundswell of community support to crowd source tech start-up information for the greater good."
Start-up tech companies and tech industry connectors are greatly encouraged to share current start-up community information through each portal to help Canadian talent gain much needed awareness.
For portal deployments, Bosika reached out to www.NickVanVlymen.com, a noted front-end developer and creative web designer with brand and web development contributions to MobileMonday Toronto.
In all, seven Canadian cities like Toronto, Waterloo, Ottawa, Montreal, Edmonton, Calgary and Vancouver now have their own tech start-up portal with the following URLs (paste ino a browser):
For the past six years, MobileMonday Toronto, a not-for-profit association, has hosted monthly industry events on various topics like Canadian Telecom Innovation, Women in Wireless, Developer Programs (from RIM, Nokia and Windows Mobile), Telecom Industry Summits (with Wind Mobile, Mobilicity, Rogers) Analyst Panels (with Frost Sullivan, IDC Canada), Venture Capital Pitch Summits, Mobile Commerce Panels (with Admeris Mobile Inc.), Mobile Media Programs (with CBC and Transcontinental) and even hosted a Mobile Marketing Awards event with noted leaders like Addictive Mobility.
The chapter has grown to accommodate between 250-400 professionals from all cross-sections of the mobile industry and tech start-up scene.
MobileMonday Toronto is Canada's leading mobile industry networking association. Co-founded by Alexander Bosika and Jim Brown, the non-profit chapter held its first monthly event in June 2006. MobileMonday is the world's largest 'open source network' for mobile professionals with over 100 chapters globally.
# # #
Vantrix Appoints New SVP Marketing and Business Development
Vantrix, the Montreal-based mobile video solutions company, has appointed Alex Staddon-Smith as Senior Vice President of Marketing and Business Development.
Reporting to Jim Knapik, Vantrix CEO, Staddon-Smith’s global responsibilities will include solution marketing, demand generation initiatives and business development.
With more than 20 years of telecoms experience, Alex comes to Vantrix from Cisco, where he led various teams for one of Cisco’s largest Cloud global clients - Amazon. During his tenure at Cisco, he also served as a Major Account Manager for Clearwire and T-Mobile USA. Before joining Cisco, Staddon-Smith served as an Account Director at Siemens Communications and led key tier one sales at Spatial Wireless (now Alcatel Lucent). He started his career at Nortel Networks where he worked for over a decade on broadband and mobile networks for some of the largest global carriers.
“We are excited to have Alex join the Vantrix team,” said Jim Knapik, CEO of Vantrix. “His deep familiarity with mobile operators and the evolution of their in-house and virtual computing needs is a great match for Vantrix as we continue to focus on the growing global video mediation and optimization opportunities.”
Staddon-Smith holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial and Business Systems from De Monfort University in the United Kingdom, and a Diploma in International Marketing and undergraduate assignments in the Netherlands and Germany.
# # #
Polley’s Stories Another Roadside Attraction
Roadside Attractions has acquired all U.S. rights to Stories We Tell, the latest film from Academy Award nominated filmmaker Sarah Polley, and produced by Anita Lee from the National Film Board of Canada. Following the film's rapturously received screenings this week in Venice, Telluride and Toronto, Roadside plans an early 2013 theatrical release in the States.
In her film, the acclaimed writer/director/actress weaves together a beautifully assembled tapestry of home movies, interviews, and narration to examine the repercussions of long-held family secrets finally coming to light.
"In fearlessly laying bare her family's most intimate moments and remembrances, Sarah allows we as audience members to reflect on each of our own family histories, both real and fabricated," notes Roadside Co-President Eric d'Arbeloff. "With Stories We Tell, Sarah Polley yet again proves herself a master of translating the specific into the universal and stakes her claim as one of today's greatest young filmmakers."
“We are very proud that Stories We Tell is an NFB production,” said Lee. “We were overwhelmed with excellent offers but felt Roadside was the perfect fit.”
The deal was negotiated by Roadside Co-President Howard Cohen for Roadside and the National Film Board of Canada's Christina Rogers on behalf of the filmmakers.
# # #
MuchMusic Announces Newest VJ
MuchMusic has added Scott Willats to its on-air team as VJ and co-host of Much’s flagship daily series, NEW.MUSIC.LIVE.
“The search for someone to take on the iconic role of VJ can take months and sometimes years," said Neil Staite, Vice-President and General Manager, Music and Entertainment, Bell Media. “From the moment we met Scott, we knew he possessed that star quality that’s hard to find. He’s charismatic, a die-hard music fan, and comfortable with viewers, fans and artists alike. He’s a great addition to the team."
Willats has had his eye on MuchMusic for a long time. In December 2011, he was part of a VJ Open Casting Call, where he lined up in freezing temperatures for hours around Much HQ, along with 500 other VJ hopefuls. One of the first people to get a meeting that day, Willats had a two-minute conversation with a MuchMusic Executive Producer, who was immediately impressed. It was apparent that Willats was a star. Following a gruelling, nine-month audition process which included him taking dance lessons on camera and interviewing international pop sensation will.i.am., Willats was a shoe-in for the job. A love of hip-hop growing up and a huge house music addict now, Scott also brings his knowledge of electronica to MuchMusic.
“I am beyond excited to begin a new phase of my career at MuchMusic,” said Willats. “To be a VJ here is such an incredible honour and truly a dream come true. The Much team has been incredibly welcoming and I’m so excited to share my passion for music with fans everyday.”
# # #
People, Places and Players is an occasional feature of Mediacaster Magazine.com; it also appears in the editorial print versions.
Information of interest and relevance to the Canadian digital media industry may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org for consideration.
People, Places and Players Making News in Digital Content Creation, Production and Distribution
2012- 08 -10