The Canadian Screen Awards were held last night in Toronto, and inclusion and acceptance were major themes.

CBC productions dominated the television wins, with Kim’s Convenience named Best Comedy, Anne winning for Best Drama, and Alias Grace winning Best Limited Series.

Two important Indigenous stories won documentary honours at the Awards last night. The late Gord Downie’s multimedia project The Secret Path won the Donald Brittain Award for Best Social-Political Documentary. The story is about the life of Chanie Wenjack, who died trying to get home from residential school in 1966 .

And the music documentary Rumble: The Indians Who Rocked the World won 3 awards, including Best Feature-Length Documentary.

The Aboriginal Peoples Television Network program APTN Investigates also won the Best News or Information Segment Category for “Against Their Will.” The report explores the coerced sterilization of Indigenous women in Saskatoon.

Filmmaker Michelle Latimer delivered one of the night’s most passionate speeches when she took the stage to accept the Best Documentary Program award for the Viceland series Rise.

“Who would have thought in a year when we made a series about Indigenous resistance, we would see the largest grassroots Indigenous resistance in 150 years at Standing Rock?” Latimer declared to loud applause.

“We don’t have to be formatted shows from other countries. We can be our own shows, with our own stories, supporting our own people and valuing all lives to make this place a better country for everyone.”


Other winners include Maudie for Best Film, Paul Sun-Hyung Lee for Best Lead Actor in a Comedy for Kim’s Convenience, Alexander Ludwig for Best Lead Actor in a drama for his role on Vikings, and Billy Campbell for Best Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Program for the detective series, Cardinal. Catherine O’Hara won for Best Lead Actress in a comedy for her work in Schitt’s Creek, and Tatiana Maslany won for Lead Actress in a drama for her work on Orphan Black.


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