By Posted on: Saturday, March 7th, 2015

Meet Lindsay MacKay, writer/director of WET BUM

Tonight is the night! WET BUM is playing at the LSPU Hall in just under and hour!!! If you don’t have tickets yet, you are going to want to rush down there and get them, especially after you learn a bit more about this up-and-coming director. Lindsay MacKay took the time to answer some of our questions about the film. She’ll be joining us after the screening this evening to answer more of your filmmaking questions. See you there!

SJIWFF: Tell us a bit about why you made the film. What was it like to write a story that weaves together multiple generations? Why was this important to you?

LM: Sam’s journey throughout the film is loosely based on my own experiences at her age. I grew up in a small town, where my parents ran and owned a nursing home. One summer, when I was a teenager, my parents suggested I take a job at the nursing home as a cleaning woman. I reluctantly agreed. Working there meant I had to slowly get to know many of the residents on a personal level.

As the summer passed, I began to understand that this moment in these people’s lives wasn’t as peaceful as I had always imagined. As I struggled through the summer managing feelings of guilt, anger, and confusion, I discovered that many of the residents were struggling, too. They were angry that they were expected to gracefully step aside for a younger generation that didn’t understand or appreciate them. They felt the guilt of having lived a long life and not having accomplished all they set out to, and they shared in my confusion and fear of the uncertain.

As I was entering an exciting period in my life — holding a boy’s hand and having my first kiss — a man lost his wife. As I fought with my parents about responsibility and freedom, a woman was admitted to the nursing home because her family could no longer take care of her. As I was growing up, they were growing old.

I have come to discover that most of themes in my work stem from my childhood and my experiences in the nursing home. Dealing with the idea of mortality and aging in my youth caused me to become hyper-aware of how we as a society force this very individual experience into a very archetypal idea. We see old people as grandpas and grandmas, fathers and mothers, brothers and sisters, but, most frequently, as people who have lived their lives and have come to terms with the fact that world keeps going after they are gone. Through Wet Bum, I hope to breakdown some of those stagnant models and shed light on the confusion and uncertainty we all face no matter our age.

We’re all attempting to give our life worth, and we place that worth in the things we collect, the people we love, and the people that love us. But what happens when the things we collect vanish, the people we love die or move on, and people who love us forget?

I was compelled to write this story because I wanted to create a conversation around these ideas and explore how different generations can find common ground through recognizing each other as individuals. Sam is a young girl, who, like me, felt like she was in a state of in-between, being young and wanting to be reckless but not fitting in with her peers because she was a late bloomer and a bit of an old soul.

Through that summer, I learned a lot about myself and what I value in other human beings. The residents at the nursing home reminded me of the value of connecting with people, as well as recognizing that we all have flaws and face a lot of uncertainty, but by being there for one another, we somehow manage to get through it all.

SJIWFF: Were there any films that influenced you? If so, how?

LM: There are many films and filmmakers and artists that influence my work. For Wet Bum kept coming up were:

Thematically the film aligns itself with an outsider – a young and confused girl who’s trying to find a place to belong, which is very similar to our main character Sam. I also admire the way the film deals with themes of sexuality, it gracefully toes the line between what’s right and wrong

RATCATCHER – DIRECTED BY LYNNE RAMSAY (One of my all time favourite films)
What I love about Ramsay’s work is how her narrative is lingering and poetic; a story that beings with the accidental death of a neighborhood boy expands to tell the complicated story of how one boy is struggling with this family, his friends and his place in life. Her shot choice and patient pacing help add to the meditative feel of the film. The small details transcend the familiar; they capture the dream-like innocence of childhood like no other film and juxtapose that with the pending pressure to grow up.

Also when I watch Wet Bum now I can see traces of how Tomas Alfredson’s Let The Right One In has influenced my work. That films also focus on the two outsiders and an unlikely friendship.

SJIWFF: Did you face any challenges making this film?

LM: We faced many challenges making this film… Almost to many to list… but the one that was the most difficult for me was time. I always wanted more hours in the day, and days in the schedule. Moving at the fast pace that film sets do (particularly indie films), I was always fearful that I was missing something, or that I didn’t have time to think of the best option for the scene.

SJIWFF: What projects do you have in the works now?

LM: I’m currently developing a short I made CLEAR BLUE into a feature. I’ve actually being thinking about setting it in an ocean side town in Newfoundland!

Here’s the synopsis:
Clear Blue tells the haunting story of Simon, a young lifeguard on his first days on the job at a community pool. The mundane quickly becomes mysterious, when Simon notices Flova, an alluring older woman with an exceptional capacity to stay submerged under water. As Simon follows Flova into the pool he makes a startling discovery. What follows is a story of temptation and pursuit, a fable of impossible love and ultimately, its harrowing consequences.

Tickets available at the LSPU Hall Box Office

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By Posted on: Friday, October 31st, 2014

Congratulations to our 2014 Film Lover’s Lottery Winners!

Congratulations to our 2014 Film Lover’s Lottery Winners!
Thank you immensely to all who supported the Festival and RBC Michelle Jackson Emerging Filmmakers fund this year.

The 2014 Lotto prizes and winners were:

Director’s Prize: Jenifer Soper

A MAXXIM Vacations trip for two to the 2015 Toronto International Film Festival including airfare, hotel for five nights, and tickets to the TIFF Closing Night Gala, provided by the St. John’s International Women’s Film Festival.

Prize value: $3,000

Writer’s Prize: Kerry Gamberg

A 32GB white iPad tablet with Smart Cover, provided by Optimized Risk and Insurance Ltd.

Prize value: $600

Producer’s Prize: Trudy Wilson

A one night stay, including dinner and breakfast, at Fisher’s Loft in Port Rexton, Trinity Bay.

Prize value: $300

Actor’s Prize: Elaine Hann

A dinner for two at Raymonds restaurant, provided by the St. John’s International Women’s Film Festival.

Prize value: $300

Film Buff’s Prize: Melissa Carrera

Two full passes to the 26th annual St. John’s International Women’s Film Festival and the 2014 – 2015 MUN Cinema Series.

Prize value: $340

Ticket Seller’s Prize (awarded to the person who sells the most tickets): Philomena Brown, who sold 64 tickets!

A $100 NLAC gift card, and a silver St. John’s International Women’s Film Festival 25th
anniversary pendant, hand-crafted by master goldsmith Jan Peterknecht.

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By Posted on: Wednesday, October 15th, 2014

Calling for a gender-based “CanCon” system

Women’s Media Organizations Call on Government for Gender Equity Policy
Please click here for the French translation.

Oct 14 10am 01

Fourteen leaders of women’s media organizations and unions, representing over 40,000 professional members of Canada’s film and television industry met at a landmark summit in St. John’s, NL on Oct. 14. Delegates unanimously supported the release of seven recommendations designed to address the current gender imbalance behind the camera and on screen. The recommendations call for changes in government policy to promote gender equity in employment and in the allocation of public funds for media production. They also recommend the establishment of an annual reporting system to increase accountability in Canada’s media industries.

Screen-based media constitute a significant part of the Canadian economy and play a crucial role in reflecting and shaping Canadian society. Both Canadian and international studies have shown that women are still significantly under-represented in the film and television industry, especially in positions of creative and financial authority. This inequity has negative implications not only for the industries involved and the employment pool for those industries, but for society as a whole.

“The Government of Canada, as well as many provincial governments, provide billions of dollars to media industries in the form of investments and tax incentives”, says Summit Co-Chair Rina Fraticelli, Executive Director of Women In View, a Toronto–based industry research organization. Since women make up over 50% of the population, employment in Canadian media production needs to truly reflect the gender balance and diversity of contemporary Canada.”

In Canada, as pointed out in 2013 CUES (Canadian Unions for Equality on Screen) “Focus on Women” report, screen-based media industries are still significantly gender-segregated both vertically and horizontally.

In the latest Women In View report, also released at the summit, statistics reveal that the situation is getting worse. In 2013, Telefilm Canada invested less than 6% of its feature film funding in productions directed by women.

The summit was hosted by the St John’s International Women’s Film Festival as part of its 25th anniversary celebrations. Noreen Golfman, Festival Chair, states, “We are proud to have hosted this historic summit demonstrating such a powerful consensus among women in the industry from coast to coast.”


Organization List and profiles and Communique
Liste des organisations, argumentaire et recommandations

For more information, please contact

Rina Fraticelli
Executive Director
Women in View
T.: 647-622-3535

Barbara Janes
Member, Board of Directors
St. John’s International Women’s Film Festival

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By Posted on: Wednesday, September 10th, 2014

Meet the Leading Ladies of Film!



Join us from October 14th to 18th for our 25th anniversary celebrations!
Introducing our [Interactive] Industry Film Forum.
Great films made by women – for everyone!

Ticket information will be available soon.

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By Posted on: Monday, September 8th, 2014

Announcing our IIP Winners!

We would like to send SO MANY THANKS to everyone who applied to the [Interactive] Incubator Project (IIP). The quality, creativity and range of submissions made the jury’s job extra hard, but we are very pleased to announce our 2014 winners. Please click the image below to learn more about our IIP Creators!


IIP 2014 winners no logo

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By Posted on: Friday, August 22nd, 2014

SJIWFF25 Does the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge


A big thanks to our dear friend, and former co-worker Maggie Keiley for nominating all of us for the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge! We completed the challenge at 5pm on August 22nd outside of our office, and had a wonderful audience of passersby watch as we drenched ourselves with cold water.

We have nominated Jon Montes, Pat Foran and Mary MacDonald!

We’ll be donating to the ALS Society of Newfoundland & Labrador. We hope that everyone enjoying these videos donates to this cause!

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By Posted on: Monday, August 18th, 2014

Walrus Subscription Contest!

The Walrus, Canada’s favourite general interest magazine, wants you to have a subscription for free!!

Enter for a chance to win a free one-year subscription to The Walrus!
Leave a comment below with your name! A winner will be announced on Friday, August 22, 2014 at 5pm.
Only comments made on this blog post will be eligible for the draw.

Also, The Walrus is coming to town!!

This September, The Walrus has organized a special event at The Rooms (9 Bonaventure Ave.) in partnership with the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers.

As part of The Walrus Talks series, The Rooms in St. John’s will be hosting an event on The Art of Conversation featuring Walrus Talks by:
Former host of Canada AM Seamus O’Regan
General Rick Hillier
Fixt Point’s Lisa Marie DiLiberto
Author Lisa Moore
Poet and writer Michael Crummey
War Child’s Samantha Nutt
Poet Mustafa Ahmed
And more!

This event is taking place on Septeber 25, 2014 at 7:30pm.
For more information about the event itself or getting tickets for the event, visit the Walrus Talks page.

….Oh, and you can drop by the office here at 28 Cochrane Street to pick up your Film Lover’s Lottery Ticket… Just sayin’.

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By Posted on: Friday, August 8th, 2014

[Interactive] Industry Film Forum + Call for submissions for the Incubator Project

Interactive Industry Film Forum Logo

August 7th, 2014, St. John’s – In celebration of their 25th anniversary, and in response to the changing film and television industry, the St. John’s International Women’s Film Festival (SJIWFF) has revamped their Industry Film Forum, the province’s flagship industry event.

Taking shape this year as the [Interactive] Industry Film Forum, the SJIWFF is working with the Newfoundland & Labrador Interactive Alliance to unite the film and interactive communities, and expand the reach of their professional development workshops to people making films, web series, apps, video games, and everything in between.

Audiences are reaching to new platforms for their favourite stories. In response, many new funding opportunities in the film and television sector now require interactive and digital components. Web-based interactive films, web series, and companion apps for films and television shows are quickly changing how audiences are engaged, and how stories are told.

From October 14th to the 18th, 2014, the [Interactive] Industry Film Forum will bring some of the country’s leading film, television and digital media creators to St. John’s for a series of panels, workshops, networking opportunities, pitch sessions and project consultations. The groundbreaking event will help bridge the gap between the local filmmaking and digital content industries, and strengthen those industries’ connections and skills.

The SJIWFF will also be soliciting four interactive or web-based projects created by women from across Atlantic Canada for the inaugural [Interactive] Incubator Project (IIP). The creators of these projects will come to St. John’s to participate in the [Interactive] Industry Film Forum, where they will be matched with local and visiting industry experts for project consultations, networking and advice. At the end of the Forum, the creators will have the option to pitch their projects to producers from organizations like NFB/Interactive and iThentic.

They will also participate in the Women In the Director’s Chair Career Advancement Module (WIDC CAM), facilitated by award-winning WIDC Producer, Carol Whiteman. Through the WIDC CAM, they will receive tailored pre-coaching to help them articulate their career goals and project concepts in preparation for their meetings with selected interactive experts and mentors throughout the festival. The CAM is part of the WIDC OutReach Initiative Program powered by NBCUniversal.

William F. White International Inc. will give selected creators a certificate for $1,000 towards the rental of their equipment. Winners will also receive passes for the Collide Creative Technology Conference (October 21-24) and an invitation to participate in their Women In Tech Networking Event and Birds of a feather mini-presentation.

For more information or to apply, visit our IIP page or contact:
Jenn Brown, Industry Liaison
St. John’s International Women’s Film Festival


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By Posted on: Thursday, May 29th, 2014

New Film Industry Mailing List

NL Film Industry

The St. John’s International Women’s Film Festival wants to connect filmmakers and the arts community via our new Newfoundland & Labrador Film Industry Mailing list.

People can sign themselves up to be sent regular newsletters, informing them of ways they can advance their filmmaking skills and focus on professional development. For more information or to sign up, visit out NL Film Industry mailing list page!

Please feel free to share and sign up!



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By Posted on: Tuesday, May 6th, 2014

Updated Job Posting: Administrative Assistant/Office Coordinator

Administrative Assistant/Office Coordinator

Date posted: April 14th, 2014
Application deadline: May 9, 2014 *Extended deadline*
Start Date: TBD

This job posting deadline is now extended and the job requirements have been adjusted. Please read below for more details.

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