Marc Bertrand Producer – Animation, French Program, National Film Board of Canada
Fast Track Session 2

Bertrand joined the NFB's Animation and Youth Studio in 1998 and worked as producer on projects such Ludovic series, Science, Please! And Cuckoo Mr. Edgar! Bertrand was named producer in the Animation and Youth Studio in September 2000. Since then, he has produced a number of notable titles, including the 13-episodes Science, Please! Series, Nicola Lemay's Noël Noël, and Jutra Award winner Bleu comme un coup de feu/Blue Like a Gunshot. He also co-produced, with Michèle Bélanger, Nicolas Brault's film Antagonia, and Jacques Drouin's last film, Empreintes/Imprints, released in 2004. In addition to film, Bertrand has been heavily involved in Web production. He co-produced the Perpetual Motions animation portal, which won two 2004 Boomerang awards and also produced several Web sites for children, housed at NFB Kids. For 2005, Marc is producing the latest films from Diane Obomsawin (Pendant ce temps) Tali (La famille Poule), Martine Chartrand (MacPherson) and Theodore Ushev (Tzaritza) while working on a feature-length film by Nicola Lemay. He is also working on McLaren – The Master’s Edition, a seven-DVD set bringing together the complete works of Norman McLaren.

   
Meet with Marc at Fast Track Session 2 (Thursday, September 22, 1:30 pm – 3:00 pm)

1. What kinds of projects do you do? What animation techniques do you commonly use? What is your target audience demographic?
Since its inception in 1966, the Studio has pursued the mission of developing a community of French-speaking filmmakers working on auteur animation films in the tradition established by Norman McLaren and René Jodoin. Over the years, the Studio's avant-garde position has led it to work with a large number of very young filmmakers and to encourage the production of films by women. In this way we have helped change the animation filmmaking landscape, both locally and internationally.

Within the current boom in animation, the Animation and Youth Studio stands out by its daring and know-how and the vigour and clarity of its works. The Youth Program is an important component of the Animation and Youth Studio. This facet of our production is devoted specifically to young audiences and favours a creator-driven approach whereby form and content reflect a bold and original vision. While not excluding documentaries or dramas, youth production up to now has consisted of animated shorts and interactive Web productions targeting young children (age 3-8) and preteens (age 9-12).

2. What are you currently working on?
For 2005, I am producing the latest films from Diane Obomsawin (Pendant ce temps) Tali (La famille Poule), Martine Chartrand (MacPherson) and Theodore Ushev (Tzaritza) while working on a feature-length film by Nicola Lemay. I am also working on L'intégrale McLaren, a seven-DVD set bringing together the complete works of Norman McLaren.

3. Do you partner with independent directors?Are you interested in co-productions/co-ventures? As a majority or minority producer, the National Film Board forges alliances with Canadian and international partners and guarantees the production of highly original, creative and innovative projects. We co-produce projects that fit within our mission of producing bold, relevant and innovative social issue-oriented media. Co-production offers a way of pooling expertise and resources so that films are produced under the best possible conditions, with partners who share the same vision and passion for filmmaking.

We don't participate in co-productions simply as an investor, grant-giver or completion funder. When we co-produce, it's as a true a creative partner, collaborating with you on editorial content, working with you to create a superior finished film.

The NFB's financial participation ranges from 30% to 49% of the overall budget. As an integrated production and distribution house, we offer superb post-production services, a conservation lab, access to our world-class audiovisual archives, and extensive Canadian and international distribution networks.

4. What new shows/ technologies/ approaches are you excited about and, perhaps, thinking of getting into?
We are interested in traditional techniques and in any new technology.

5. What is your company's philosophy?
The Animation and Youth Studio of the National Film Board of Canada's French Program is a centre of creativity with a definite focus on research and innovation. Our primary interest is in auteur animation films.