Thorneloe to Receive NOHFC Funding for Film

November 25, 2016


Thorneloe University to Receive NOHFC Funding for Unique Film and TV Production Workshops

Thorneloe University, federated with Laurentian University, is proud to announce that it will receive a $62,500 grant from the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation (NOHFC) towards funding unique film and TV production workshops for students enrolled in its Motion Picture Arts (MPArts) curriculum within its Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) degree program. The workshops will be offered over the next five consecutive years, from 2016 to 2020. The total cost for the workshops is $125,000, of which Thorneloe University will contribute $25,000, and the not-for-profit Northern Ontario Motion Picture Culture & Industry Development Corporation (NOMPCIDC, pronounced nomp-see-dik) will contribute the remaining $37,500.

The workshops, which are administrated by Sudbury-based NOMPCIDC in partnership with Thorneloe University, are a comprehensive, practice-based educational supplement for the students enrolled in the MPArts curriculum at Thorneloe University at Laurentian. The workshops allow students the unique opportunity to work under the direct guidance of professional filmmakers on professional productions – an experience they would otherwise never have at any educational institution. From development and pre-production to production, post-production, and exhibition, students enrolled in the MPArts curriculum will have a unique opportunity to observe first hand, and work on, professional productions, from development and pre-production to production, post-production, and exhibition. “It’s to encourage students that they don’t need millions of dollars, big movie stars and huge crews to make films,” said Benjamin Paquette, Supervisor of the MPArts curriculum.

For the previous four consecutive years, Thorneloe University and NOMPCIDC solely financed these workshops. Based on the successful results of the workshops, however, TU and NOMPCIDC were confident in approaching the NOHFC about a partnership. For example, finalists in this year’s edition of Cinéfest Sudbury International Film Festival’s popular CTV Best in Shorts Competition included two shorts by current MPArts students, and one from a former MPArts student. All three productions were assignments produced in the course titled Production II, the second of the three core production courses in the MPArts curriculum, and all three students participated in the film production workshops. Former MPArts student Andrew Lucas premiered his short “Coming Apart,” while current MPArts students Masha Potapov and Zahra Golafshani screened their shorts “Couple of Friends” and “Private Sessions,” respectively. For Lucas and Potapov, this was the first showcase of their work at a festival, while Golafshani’s screening marked her third consecutive year at Cinéfest. In each of the two previous years at Cinéfest, she received an award for her work. Potapov and Golafshani are currently enrolled in the course Production III wherein they will produce numerous shorts over the current academic year. This academic year they will participate in another film production workshop.

Specifically, the workshops allow students the unique opportunity to shadow and/or assist the following lead production crewmembers as they perform their work-related duties, including the screenwriter, producer, director, cinematographer, sound-recordist, production designer, picture editor, sound designer. In addition, students will not only be educated and trained in industry-standard facilities, with industry-standard equipment, and assisted by professional technicians, but also benefit from direct exposure to professional productions in Northern Ontario.

The production workshops are not designed as an introductory-level workshop for individuals with little or not knowledge and experience in film and TV production, but for individuals completing a post-secondary education in film and TV production who will soon be transitioning into the professional workforce, and/or continuing their education with a post-graduate degree(s). The general outcome of the production workshops is that students experience working under the guidance of professional filmmakers in a professional context, which will therefore allow students to further develop and gain more confidence in their practical work skills, receive credit for their work that they can add to their resume, network with professional filmmakers, and receive a reference letter(s) from a professional filmmaker(s) under whom they shadowed and/or assisted (if merited).

Thorneloe University has offered academic programming in the humanities for more than 50 years. As a founding member of the Laurentian University Federation, on the campus of Laurentian University in Sudbury, Thorneloe is home to the departments of Ancient Studies, Theatre and Motion Picture Arts, Religious Studies, Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies, as well the Thorneloe University School of Theology.

For more information about Thorneloe University, visit

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Media contact:

Prof. Benjamin Paquette, Supervisor, Motion Picture Arts curriculum, BFA Program, Thorneloe University at Laurentian +1-705-560-9187 •

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