by Tara Thorne
House of Sugar author and Coast alum Rebecca Kraatz picked up the Emerging Talent award this week at The Doug Wright Awards, "named for a cartoonist who created a wordless syndicated strip called Doug Wright's Family, AKA Nipper," says Kraatz. "He lived from 1917 to 1983."
The award was created in 2005 and designed by the cult cartoonist Seth. "The selection is by a jury of cartoonists, filmmakers, writers, journalists, broadcasters and those in fine arts," says Kraatz. This year's jury included director Bruce MacDonald and cartoonist Lorenz Peter (Dark Adaptation).
There are only two awards. Best Book, which went to Joe Ollman's This Will All End in Tears (local artist Bryan Lee O'Malley's Scott Pilgrim and The Infinite Sadness was a nominee), and Kraatz's emerging artist nod. (The shortlist for Emerging Talent also included Halifax's Hope Larson and her book Gray Horses.)
"Receiving the Doug Wright Award means people besides my friends and family have read House of Sugar," says Kraatz. "It is exciting to be recognized by the people in the community I work in. I truly wasn't expecting to win. I was speechless and couldn't say anything into the microphone. I do remember Mrs. Wright"—Doug's widow—"who presented me with the award, was dressed nicely and had pretty sparkling shoes on."
The Toronto International Film Festival announced its final slate of films this week, and there's one more local connection to report. (We previously announced Chaz "no relation" Thorne's double-shot of Poor Boy's Game and Just Buried.)
Ellen Page, who stars in the Bruce McDonald drama The Tracey Fragments (which we hear will be in the Atlantic Film Festival's program as well; check back next week for confirmation of that and more), will also be in Toronto with Juno, a comedy directed by Jason Reitman (Thank You For Smoking). Page stars as the titular teen who becomes pregnant unexpectedly. The Vancouver-shot film also stars Michael "Superbad" Cera, his Arrested Development dad Jason Bateman, Jennifer Garner, Rainn Wilson and Allison Janney. The Toronto International Film Festival begins September 6.
A Bounty-ful weekend
Lest we forget the crazy television vortex we're in around here—did any of you parents discover that your child is smart enough to be on TV?—we'd be remiss in not reminding you that Dog the Bounty Hunter will be visiting the Forum on August 25. You might remember him from such shows as Dog the Bounty Hunter, where he and his wife track low-grade criminals down in the name of the law. Dog, whose birth name is Duane Lee Chapman, claims to have 6,000 captures under his mullet. (He was also convicted of first-degree murder, but it was pardoned, and he became born again.) His brand new book, You Can Run But You Can't Hide, is currently number one on the New York frigging Times' bestseller list. Tickets start at $39.50 and are available at ticketpro.ca or by calling 1-888-311-9090.
We're in the final days of the Linda Joy Awards nominations. You've got (or had) until August 24 to get your applications in for the Broadcast Script Award, supporting development for a TV script; the Joy Award for production and the Joy Post Award for post-production. Applicants for the inaugural Helen Hill Animated Award have until October 26. Get your forms at lindajoy.com.
Montreal filmmakers Paul Nadler (director) and Jonathan Finkelstein (producer) will be in town on August 29 with their documentary Braindamaj'd...Take II in tow. The Peabody and Gemini Award-winning film follows Nadler's struggle to get his life back to normal after a traumatic brain injury in a car accident in Egypt a decade ago.
Finkelstein, an alum of CBC locally whose credits include Street Cents and Popular Mechanics for Kids, which launched the careers of Jay Baruchel and Elisha Cuthbert, will attend the screening with Nadler. There will be a Q&A afterwards. The show starts at 7pm at Park Lane. There also be a free, informal meeting with Nadler on August 30 at 11am at the Bloomfield Centre and a documentary master class that evening at 6:30 at the CBC Radio building.
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