February 3, 2018
Jesse Wente was appointed by key audiovisual industry organizations as the first Director of Canada’s Indigenous Screen Office effective and assumed the position February 1. He is a highly respected broadcaster and cultural industries leader, having been Director of Film Programmes at the TIFF Bell Lightbox for the past seven years, and contributing to CBC Radio as a critic, reporter, and producer since 1996. He is Ojibwe from the Serpent River First Nation, born in Toronto.
Canada’s Indigenous Screen Office was announced by the Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Canadian Heritage, at the Banff World Media Festival this past June. The Office was created to support the Indigenous screen-based sector in Canada and its mandate is to improve relationships with broadcasters, distributors, training institutions and federal funders to implement a long-term strategy. The Aboriginal Peoples Television Network (APTN), the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation/Radio-Canada (CBC/SRC), the Canada Media Fund (CMF), Telefilm Canada, the Canadian Media Producers Association (CMPA), and the National Film Board of Canada (NFB) collaborated to support the Indigenous Screen Office. Associated partners include Bell Media, the Harold Greenberg Fund and VICE Studio Canada. See the CMF release and Playback (paywall) article for more information.