Christin Simms – Writer

Crackerjack kids writer Christin Simms, a self-described ex-'nerd-girl', clearly understands what makes a story tick.

Age: 29
Residence: Toronto
Agency: Meridian Artists
Buzz: Award-winning scripter is part of the team on the animated Producing Parker, soon to air on Global, and she assumes the head writer role on the forthcoming kids show Dino Dan

Crackerjack kids writer Christin Simms, a self-described ex-’nerd-girl’, clearly understands what makes a story tick.

Speaking about YTV’s Captain Flamingo, the animated show she scripts in which a boy dresses up as a costumed hero and helps ‘li’l kids’ despite lacking superpowers, she says, ‘Even though it’s a kids cartoon, everything that’s good in it comes from a completely true, honest place.’

Simms won a 2008 Writers Guild of Canada Award for the Captain Flamingo episode ‘Comic Slip,’ inspired by a true experience.

Captain Flamingo has a best friend who’s his go-to girl,’ she explains, ‘and I had recently had a fight with my best friend. My script was absolutely 100% about them having a fight. It’s a children’s show, so the fight was about something different, but I brought my emotions to the story. I think that’s what sold the script – what made it work.’

She’s also part of the writing team on Breakthrough Films & Television’s far racier animation Producing Parker, which bowed in May on TVtropolis and is expected to debut on Global soon. Simms is sometimes called upon to supply details about how young women think and act.

‘Parker [voiced by Kristin Booth] is a single television professional who has a dog and works a lot. It’s not me, but there’s a lot of me in it,’ she says. ‘Laura Kosterski created Parker, but I am the closest of all the writers to being in her place. So the other writers are always saying, ‘Christin, what would you do in this situation?’ And I sometimes say, ‘Do we really have to talk about that?”

Ira Levy, Breakthrough partner and EP, finds Simms’ writing ‘precise and witty.’

‘She creates characters that are vulnerable and have unique perspectives on the world,’ he says. ‘They may be outsiders but they’re far saner than most people – and quite often they became the core of her stories. They show you what kind of human beings can do well in this mixed-up world. They’re not unlike the woman herself: endearing and funny.’

Simms explains that she is more comfortable writing ‘younger,’ which is perfect for the upcoming Dino Dan (TVO, Access Alberta, Knowledge and SCN), on which she is creative producer and story editor. The series features dinosaurs aplenty conjured up by inquisitive 11-year-old Dan, played by Jason Spevack. Combining live action with CGI, it is Simms’ first live-action series.

Dino Dan is produced by Sinking Ship Entertainment, the principals of which attended Ryerson University with Simms. She admits, however, that taking on new responsibility on the show can be both great and terrifying.

‘It’s hard to have the confidence to say, ‘No, I’m right and you’re wrong,” she says. ‘But if you know what the script is supposed to be, you know how to argue for it. It’s fighting for your vision and knowing that you have to do so.’