CFC Features’ Justine Whyte departs

The director and executive producer has been a driving part of the program since its creation in 1992, and has worked closely with over 100 writers, directors and producers.

After close to three decades overseeing the Canadian Film Centre’s Features program, director and executive producer Justine Whyte has left the charitable cultural organization.

Whyte has been a driving part of the stream dedicated to advancing filmmaker’s scripts and producing projects with budgets under $1 million since its creation in 1992. As such, she has worked closely with over 100 writers, directors and producers in overseeing the business and creative development of more than 50 projects at the CFC. Her last day was April 1.

“All I can say at this juncture is that my next step – or act – will certainly have me bring my expertise and heart to a new frontline in supporting the best of Canadian talent and storytellers,” Whyte said catching up with Playback Daily, adding that for now she’ll be staying home to assist with stopping the spread of COVID-19. “I’ll still be in touch with my CFC family on the many projects I worked on, to assist in any and all matters of memory.”

A CFC spokesperson confirmed to Playback Daily that for the time being, CFC Features will be supervised by CEO Slawko Klymkiw and general counsel Jane Angel.

“Forever an indie filmmaker at heart, Justine has remained passionate about the weird, wonderful and essential stories and is forever championing truly original, diverse and unique voices,” said Klymkiw in a statement. “More importantly, Justine is a terrific colleague and friend to all of us at the CFC, and the many members of the screen industry that she has worked with over the years. With a pure heart and a generous disposition, she has made the CFC a better place. Her passion for both the CFC and for our industry at large is unparalleled. She will always remain a part of the CFC family.”

Over the years, Whyte has worked on the production, marketing and distribution of 25 theatrical feature films, such as director Vincenzo Natali’s Cube (1997), writer/director Charles Officer’s Nurse.Fighter.Boy (2008), writer/director Sara St. Onge’s Molly Maxwell (2013), writer/director Jeff Barnaby’s Rhymes for Young Ghouls (2013) and Adventures in Public School (2017) from writer Josh Epstein and director/writer Kyle Rideout. Her most recent credits include writer/director Sadaf Foroughi’s follow-up to her debut feature AvaSummer With Hope, and director Tracey Deer’s coming-of-age story Beans with co-writer Meredith Vuchnich.

Prior to joining the CFC, Whyte got her start in the film industry in 1988 with distribution and world sales company Cinephile Limited, gaining experience in areas such as domestic theatrical and non-theatrical marketing, international sales, acquisitions, administration and finances.

Photo courtesy of David Leyes