Noel Baker’s first screenplay to be produced was an adaptation of Michael Turner’s punk rock road novel, Hard Core Logo, directed by Bruce McDonald. Baker also authored Hard Core Roadshow, a rollicking memoir about the making of the film. He went on to work on further projects with McDonald, including Platinum (a CBC MOW) and American Whisky Bar (a live-to-air drama on City-TV). Other feature writing credits include the Bollywood-style hockey comedy Breakaway, and the 2023 feature comedy-drama, We Forgot To Break Up. For television, Baker co-created the sex comedy series Show Me Yours (Oxygen Network/Showcase Television) and the limited drama series At The Hotel (CBC). He was head writer on a dozen hours of the true crime biker drama, Gangland Undercover (History Channel/A&E). In the dark world of unscripted television, Baker has been a writer/story producer on paranormal and true crime series, including Paranormal 911Haunted Hospitals, Mission UnexplainedMurder in Amish Country, Unexpected Killer, and Billionaire Murders. Over many years, he has served as a story editor and creative consultant on dozens of films and TV projects, and he has mentored many of Canada’s most talented writers and filmmakers at the Canadian Film Centre. 

Tony Burgess

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Tony Burgess is a Canadian novelist and screenwriter. He is best known for his 1998 novel Pontypool Changes Everything and its film adaptation Pontypool, for which he also wrote the screenplay. Pontypool is a horror story about a zombie-like outbreak caused by a virus that infects language. Burgess has also written other novels and stories that blend ultra-violent horror and absurdist humour, such as The Hellmouths of Bewdley, People Live Still in Cashtown Corners, and The n-Body Problem. His writing has been described as “H. P. Lovecraft meets Stephen Leacock”.

Burgess has collaborated with filmmaker Bruce McDonald on several projects, including the film Dreamland. Burgess and McDonald are currently working on a sequel to Pontypool, titled Pontypool Changes.

Burgess lives in Stayner, Ontario, with his wife Rachel Jones, who is a crown attorney, and their two children. He has a degree in semiotics from the University of Toronto and has worked as a telephone psychic, a factory worker, and a musical theatre actor.

Lynn Crosbie is a Canadian writer who writes poetry, novels and columns. Crosbie’s writing is known for its provocative and experimental style, exploring themes such as sexuality, violence, popular culture and feminism. She often blurs the boundaries between fact and fiction, reality and fantasy, poetry and prose. She has written several collections of poetry, such as Miss Pamela’s Mercy (1992), VillainElle (1994), Pearl (1996), Queen Rat: New and Selected Poems (1998), Missing Children (2003), Liar (2006) and The Corpses of the Future (2017). She has also written novels based on real-life crime cases, such as Paul’s Case: The Kingston Letters (1997) and Dorothy L’Amour (1999). Her novel Where Did You Sleep Last Night? (2015) is a fictionalized account of the relationship between a teenage girl and the reincarnated Kurt Cobain. She also collaborated with David Trinidad and Jeffery Conway on Phoebe 2002: An Essay in Verse (2003), a poetic adaptation of the film All About Eve.

Crosbie is also a cultural critic who writes for various publications, such as The Globe & Mail, Hazlitt and Fashion. She has a regular column called “Pop Rocks” in The Globe & Mail, where she comments on current events and trends. She has also edited an anthology of essays on women’s representations of sex and the body, called The Girl Wants To: Representations of Sex and the Body (1993). She has won three National Magazine Awards.

Karen Shenfeld


Karen Shenfeld is a Canadian writer who writes poetry, magazine stories and documentaries. Shenfeld has published four books of poetry, The Law of Return (1999), which won the Canadian Jewish Book Award for poetry in 2001, The Fertile Crescent (2005), My Father’s Hands Spoke in Yiddish (2010) and To Measure the World (2020). Her poetry explores themes such as identity, culture, history, love and loss. Her work has also appeared in various journals and anthologies in Canada and abroad. She has given readings on CBC Radio and at international literary festivals.

Shenfeld has also written and produced two documentaries, Il Giardino (2007), which explores the culture of Toronto’s Little Italy neighbourhood, and Maggie & Merly (2017), which delves into the relationship between a Canadian widow and her live-in Filipina caregiver. She has also written for newspapers and magazines such as The Globe & Mail, Saturday Night, and Toronto Life, and has received grants from the Toronto, Ontario and Canada Councils for the Arts. In 2016, Shenfeld moved from downtown lToronto to downtown Magnetawan in Ontario’s Lake District. She enjoys travelling and has hitchhiked across the Sahara desert and the Congo. 

Claire Cameron is a Canadian writer who writes novels and journalism. Cameron’s novels are inspired by her experiences in nature and her interest in human survival. Her first novel, The Line Painter (2007), won the Northern Lit Award and was nominated for an Arthur Ellis Award. It tells the story of a woman who encounters a mysterious line painter on a remote highway. Her second novel, The Bear (2014), was a national bestseller and was longlisted for the Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction. It reimagines the 1991 bear attack in Algonquin Park from the perspective of a five-year-old girl. Her third novel, The Last Neanderthal (2017), was also a national bestseller and was shortlisted for the Rogers Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize. It interweaves the stories of a modern archaeologist and a Neanderthal woman who lived 40,000 years ago.

Cameron is also a journalist who writes for various publications, such as The Globe & Mail, The New York Times and The New Yorker. She writes about topics such as parenting, feminism, science and literature. She lives in Toronto with her husband and two children.

Randy Cantera


Randy Donald Cantera is a Canadian writer who worked as a print journalist, editor, photographer and media monitor. He was born and raised in Toronto.  He studied English literature at the University of Western Ontario & Carleton University before graduating in print journalism at Algonquin College.  He spent 17 years working for various publications in Toronto, Ottawa, London and Woodstock.  He performed as a reporter, features writer, editorialist, reviewer, entertainment section editor and editor-in-chief.  Other roles included distributor, proofreader and sales representative.

Cantera also toiled for about 18 years as a media monitor and broadcast production coordinator for Cision Canada (formerly Bowdens Media Monitoring).  He wrote summaries of stories broadcast on radio and TV for clients as well as edited media reports in English and French.

Tina Cooper


Tina Cooper is a Canadian screenwriter who recently adapted Barbara Gowdy’s book Little Sister for director Bruce McDonald. Her first foray into film was to associate produce/music supervise the rock and roll feature film Goldirocks. Tina’s first feature script Comforts of Home won the Wift/Telefilm Film Incubator Award and led her to a Writer in Residence position at the Canadian Film Centre. Tina wrote two of the five Short Dramatic Films produced at the CFC that year: Pudge, winner of the Platinum Remi Award at Worldfest, and Adam Avenger, winner of Best Short Film at Sprockets (now TIFF KIDS.) Both films played at numerous international film festivals and on television/digital cable platforms. Tina has had multiple original feature scripts optioned, as well as her original written by/created by TV pilot Practice Makes EleanorShe is known for her character driven stories and strong female protagonists. Tina has worked as a facilitator for TIFF’s community outreach program Reel Comfort with a collaborative short film writing workshop she developed for the mental health residents at various Toronto hospitals. She has also been an instructor at TIFF KIDS, running a story editing workshop for teens. Tina has an Honours English degree from the University of Toronto. She is the lead singer and drummer of her band The Freckles (her most PG band to date).

Patrick Whistler

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Patrick Whistler is a Canadian filmmaker. In addition to story editing the films WEIRDOS (TIFF 2016, Berlin 2017) and MOBILE HOMES (Cannes 2017), his short film Q&A was also a finalist in the 2019 CBC Short Film Faceoff. He co-wrote the feature DREAMLAND (Fantasia, Whistler 2019) and was a Consulting Producer on CTV’s CARDINAL.

Semi Chellas is best known as a writer/producer on The Romanoffs and Mad Men, where she was nominated for six Emmys and ran the writers’ room for the last two seasons. She is a writer/Executive Producer on several forthcoming shows, including Spike Jonze’s untitled series for Netflix; Jay Roach’s Kent State; The Man Who Knew Too Much for Hulu; and Goodnight and Good Luck for AMC.

Chellas’s directing debut American Woman (adapted from Susan Choi’s Pulitzer shortlisted novel) starred Hong Chau and Sarah Gadon, premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival; had a gala at the Toronto International Film Festival; and opened The Female Eye Film Festival. The movie won Best Film, Best Director, Best Actress, and Best Cinematography at the Downtown Los Angeles Film Festival; a Special Jury Prize for the two lead actresses at the Calgary International Film Festival; and the Gold Remi Award for best period film at WorldFest Houston festival. Chellas was named one of IndieWire’s 25 Rising Directors to Know.

Chellas has written a number of indie features, including Sundance-premiered Ophelia (starring Daisy Ridley, Naomi Watts, George MacKay and Clive Owen). She is currently developing feature scripts including The Year of Fog (adapted from the book by Michelle Richards); Dark Days at the Magna Carta (for 21 Laps); Two By Two They Came (for Killer Films); and Last Night in Montreal (adapting with Emily St. John Mandel from her novel).

Maureen Medved

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Maureen Medved is a Canadian writer and playwright. She is also an associate professor of creative writing at the University of British Columbia. She has published two award-winning novels, The Tracey Fragments (2007) and Black Star (2018). She also wrote the screenplay for the film adaptation of The Tracey Fragments, directed by Bruce McDonald and starring Elliot Page. She has been published in literary journals and magazines and has had her plays produced in various Canadian cities. She is currently working on her third novel, a book of creative non-fiction, and other projects for film.

Dany Chiasson

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Dany Chiasson is a Canadian filmmaker and producer who is married to director Bruce McDonald. She was born and raised on Îles de la Madeleine (Quebec), where she developed a fascination with Joan of Arc from her grandmother’s stories. She graduated with a degree in film studies from Laval University and studied acting at the Lee Strasberg Theatre School in Los Angeles. She moved to Toronto in 2003 to pursue her filmmaking career. She has worked as a producer on several of McDonald’s films, such as This Movie Is Broken (2010), Trigger (2010) and Dreamland (2019). She also produced and directed her own documentaries and short films such as 29 Mai 1431… Le Matin (2001), Pantomime (2003) and The Audition (2018). Her most personal project is My Joan of Arc (2011), a feature documentary that follows her as she journeys on horseback across France, retracing the medieval icon’s first 11-day ride over enemy  land.  She lives in Toronto with McDonald, their daughter and Billie the cat.

Pascal Trottier is a Canadian filmmaker and screenwriter. He graduated from the Canadian Film Centre in 2005. He has written for several horror films and TV shows, such as The Colony (2013), Hellions (2015), Darknet (2013), and A Christmas Horror Story (2015). He won the Writer’s Guild of Canada award for Best Feature Screenplay in 2016 for A Christmas Horror Story. Pascal is currently the Senior Scriptwriter at Ubisoft Toronto.

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