Message from the President and CEO
Our role at the CMF is to invest in and promote the content that continues to position Canada as a global leader in audiovisual production, but also to foster the next generation of creative Canadians. This vision was the cornerstone of our work in 2016-2017. Our objective is to ensure that our television and innovative digital media continue to be fundamental expressions of Canadian identity, and vehicles by which we tell our stories. Stories of an optimistic, multilingual and inclusive country. Stories that draw from Canada’s vast wealth of diverse perspectives.
The topic of gender balance was globally prevalent across screen-based industries in 2016-2017. With a firm look to the future, the CMF made a major commitment to diversity and inclusion by announcing a number of tangible gender balance measures to its programs. In addition, resulting from a comprehensive national consultation spearheaded by the CMF with the support of several national partners, the CMF publicly released an Indigenous Screen-based Strategy to empower Indigenous Canadians to engage in and self-determine their own cultural creations.
In 2016-2017, and in a context of rapid evolution in the industry, the CMF continued to successfully execute its mandate to support Canada’s audiovisual industry through its various funding programs, which contributed $370M to financing the development and production of 1,270 television and digital media projects
In 2016-2017, CMF funding triggered $1.4B in production activity across the country. Every $1 of CMF funding generated $3.99 in production activity; the highest leverage since the CMF started operations in 2010. This serves as an indication of the key role the CMF plays in the sustainable creation of over 140,000 jobs in Canada’s audiovisual sector. This level of funding and support was made possible thanks to the continued commitment of our funding contributors, the Government of Canada and Canada’s cable, satellite and IPTV distributors.
The CMF continued to demonstrate its agility in responding to an ever-changing media landscape through the introduction of new programs and measures. In 2016-2017 alone, we managed 1,933 funding applications and our programs were almost fully subscribed at 98 per cent – a clear indication that they are aligned with the industry’s evolving needs.
The quality of Canadian audiovisual content continues to be celebrated by Canadian and global audiences. Canadian audiovisual content received critical acclaim and, thanks to growing sales beyond our borders, Canada’s stories continued to reach new audiences. In 2016-2017, CMF-funded projects received 801 award nominations, including 213 wins in 25 award ceremonies across the country. Internationally, CMF-funded projects received 45 nominations, of which 15 won awards in 17 different awards ceremonies, including the Peabody Awards, the Emmy Awards, the Daytime Emmy Awards, the Sundance Film Festival and the Kidscreen Awards, to name a few. Producers reported 1,414 sales of 448 CMF-funded productions.
The growing popularity of Canadian content is also noted here at home, where 25 productions delivered television audiences of over one million viewers in the 2016-2017 broadcast season. The weekly per capita viewing to CMF-funded productions was 1.5 hours in the English market and 3.4 hours in the French market. Total measured visits to CMF-funded digital media projects were 22.4M in the Convergent Stream and 1.9M in the Experimental Stream.
In 2016-2017, we continued to improve our processes to better meet the industry’s needs. Dialogue, the new program administration system, was successfully launched. Initially, only two sub-programs for the Experimental Stream used this new platform. Development of the system continued in order to accommodate all CMF programs as of April 2017.
The CMF also unveiled a new corporate website which offers a simple, intuitive user experience that is fully accessible across all devices and screen sizes. Efforts to redesign the CMF website were supported by the valuable feedback from industry stakeholders who regularly use it, and we thank them for their contribution.
Stakeholder satisfaction with the CMF’s communications role is at 85 per cent, satisfaction with program administration is at 86 per cent, and satisfaction with the CMF outreach achieved a score of 87 per cent.
Through its Convergent Stream, the CMF financed the production of 519 television programs. These were complemented by 195 associated digital media projects, allowing for additional audience engagement with supported content. Convergent Stream production commitments amounted to $306M in 2016-2017 and triggered over $1.3B in production volume.
Through its Experimental Stream, the CMF provided $40.4M in funding to 96 projects at the development, production and marketing stages, triggering $75.5M in industry activity.
Resulting from a continued agreement with Corus Entertainment, the CMF administered the Corus-CMF Page-to-Pitch Program for a fourth year. Through this program, 24 development projects were funded last year, totaling $1M.
The CMF partnered with 64 industry events and contributed to an additional 25 industry events in Canada and internationally that aligned with the CMF’s objectives of promoting Canadian content, featuring Canada as a coproduction partner of choice and distributing industry intelligence. Producers the CMF featured at international industry events reported on how this added visibility has led to direct potential business opportunities through leads for sales and coproduction with other producers in a very competitive environment.
As a result of a broad collaboration between industry players, including unions and guilds, producer associations, and the support of Deluxe Canada and Telefilm Canada, the CMF announced a partnership with YouTube (Google Canada) and BroadbandTV to digitize iconic Canadian titles produced primarily between 1995 and 2005, in order to make them available again to Canadian and world audiences. The new YouTube channel is scheduled to launch in 2017.
Foster and develop
As a result of its work in identifying industry and market trends in the screen-based sector, the CMF continues to build on its position as a go-to source for critical and reliable information. Visits to the CMF Trends website continued to grow and the site continues to serve its purpose in disseminating key industry insights through blog posts and research papers. Our Keytrends reports were the most read content on the CMF Trends website, attesting to its effectiveness at conveying key transformative phenomena in relation to technology and innovation, consumer habits, business models, and markets and competition. The CMF was invited to speak about media convergence, the success of Canadian children’s and youth programming and virtual reality content, including at the Forum on Radio and TV Contents for Children-IFT in Mexico City, FICCI Frames in Mumbai, and the Venice International Film Festival.
Reaction to change is often met with resistance. We at the CMF welcomed Minister Joly’s consultation and policy review with much enthusiasm, and we look forward to the results of the process. It is imperative that we all look to the future with optimism, and that we continue to fully embrace the opportunities the creative economy presents.
I wish to thank the CMF Board of Directors for their invaluable guidance and support. I would also like to extend my gratitude to all CMF staff and the CMF Program Administrator, Telefilm Canada, for their dedicated efforts and for the way they continue to embrace our culture of transparency and client-driven service delivery.
President and CEO