Violin tops Genies

The Red Violin scooped up eight trophies at the 19th annual Genie Awards, including all the top honors – best motion picture for Rhombus Media producer Niv Fichman, best direction for Francois Girard, best screenplay for Don McKellar and Girard, as well as best cinematography for Alain Dostie.

Sturla Gunnarsson’s Such A Long Journey and McKellar’s Last Night were the only other multiple Genie winners. Such A Long Journey picked up three accolades and Last Night came away with only two Genies, as well as the previously announced Claude Jutra Award for McKellar.

The 19th Genie awards show was held Feb. 4 at the Living Arts Centre in Mississauga, Ont. Last year, the awards show aired at a later date on Bravo! but this year returned to a live broadcast on cbc, hosted by actor Albert Schultz.

Such A Long Journey, produced by The Film Works of Toronto and Amy International Artists in the u.k., was acknowledged with Genies for best actor (Roshan Seth) and for achievement in editing and sound editing.

Last Night, produced by Rhombus Media, was recognized in two acting categories, with Sandra Oh named best actress and Callum Keith Rennie best supporting actor.

Conquest, a coproduction between Shaftesbury Films, Heartland Motion Pictures and Greenpoint Films in the u.k., and Amnon Buchbinder’s The Fishing Trip received one Genie each. Monique Mercure was named best actress in a supporting role for her work in Conquest and Suzie Ungerlieder picked up the best original song Genie for River Blue from The Fishing Trip.

In the documentary categories, Vancouver filmmaker Nettie Wild’s A Place Called Chiapas (produced by Wild and the National Film Board) was chosen as the best feature-length film and Brenda Longfellow’s Shadow Maker: Gwendolyn MacEwan, Poet received best short doc honors.

The animated short award went to Bingo, directed by Chris Landreth, and the live-action short drama Genie to Mary Lewis’ When Ponds Freeze Over, produced by the nfb.

The Quebec comedy Les Boys was presented with the Blockbuster Golden Reel Award, given annually to the film which achieves the top Canadian box office gross within the Genie Award qualifying period of Oct. 21, 1997 to Oct. 20, 1998. Produced by Richard Goudreau and distributed by Lions Gate Films in Canada, Les Boys’ box office receipts totaled $6.8 million during the period.

Nominated films shut out of any Genie wins included Jonathan Tammuz’s Rupert’s Land and Gillies MacKinnon’s Regeneration, both nominated for best picture and achievement in direction. Robert Lepage’s No also came away empty-handed.

Following is the complete list of Genie winners:

Best Motion Picture: The Red Violin – Niv Fichman, producer

Best Achievement in Direction: Francois Girard – The Red Violin

Best Screenplay: Don McKellar, Francois Girard – The Red Violin

Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role: Roshan Seth – Such A Long Journey

Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role: Sandra Oh – Last Night

Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role: Callum Keith Rennie – Last Night

Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role: Monique Mercure – Conquest

Best Achievement in Cinematography: Alain Dostie – The Red Violin

Best Achievement in Editing: Jeff Warren – Such A Long Journey

Best Achievement in Art Direction: Francois Seguin – The Red Violin

Best Achievement in Costume Design: Renee April – The Red Violin

Best Achievement in Music – Original Score: John Corigliano – The Red Violin

Best Achievement in Music – Original Song: Suzie Ungerlieder – River Blue (The Fishing Trip)

Best Achievement in Overall Sound: Claude La Haye, Jo Caron, Bernard Gariepy Strobl, Hans Peter Stroble – The Red Violin

Best Achievement in Sound Editing: David Evans, Rick Cadger, Donna Powell, Paul Shikata, Phong Tran, Clive Turner – Such A Long Journey

Best Feature-length Documentary: Betsy Carson, Kirk Tougas, Nettie Wild – A Place Called Chiapas

Best Short Documentary: Anita Herczeg, Brenda Longfellow – Shadow Maker: Gwendolyn MacEwen, Poet

Best Live-action Short Drama: Mary Lewis – When Ponds Freeze Over

Best Animated Short: Andy Jones, Chris Landreth, Kevin Tureski – Bingo