Does Canadian culture warrant widespread taxpayer support?

Protecting cultural industries from competition and propping them up with public money is just wasteful

Does Canadian culture warrant widespread taxpayer support?Many advocates for cultural diversity have a sudden change of heart when the topic turns to Canada's ‘cultural industries.’ As they say in Argentina, for money, the monkey will dance. What constitutes Canadian heritage, given its complex milieu, tends to be in the eye of the beholder. However, the heritage is so weak that, supposedly,…

Fred Jung’s incredible journey from Calgary to Hollywood

The Shatner Universe executive talks about developing entertainment projects and working with an icon, William Shatner

Fred Jung’s incredible journey from Calgary to HollywoodFred Jung is president of acquisitions and development of Shatner Universe LLC in North Hollywood. Can you explain your journey on how you got from Calgary to Los Angeles in your career? Jung: Boy, it really has been an incredible journey! Growing up in Calgary in the early ’70s, I was always intrigued with the entertainment…

TV’s Vikings is good fun and semi-reasonable history

But large-scale medieval violence and plundering wasn’t uniquely Viking – not by a long stretch

TV’s Vikings is good fun and semi-reasonable historyVikings returns to TV screens on Nov. 28, courtesy of the History Channel. The Canadian-Irish co-production will embark on the second half of its fifth season and there’ll be more to come after that. If you like historical drama with interesting characters and plenty of action, this is good news. Vikings’ storyline is inspired by…

The many voices of Doug de Nance

Voice artist, skybox announcer and on-the-floor host of live events across the globe

The many voices of Doug de NanceDoug de Nance is a voice artist, skybox announcer and on-the-floor host of live events across the globe. Tell me what you do and the range of services you’ve been hired to do over the years? Doug: My brand – When he speaks, it’s an event – really covers what I do. I call it voice…

Stan Lee, left-wing culture warrior

Under his leadership, Marvel directly challenged societal norms on race, religion, war, gender and sexuality

Stan Lee, left-wing culture warriorStan Lee passed away on Nov. 12. The larger-than-life personality of Marvel Comics for seven decades, he helped create some of the world’s most beloved superheroes, including Spider-Man, The Incredible Hulk, Iron Man and Black Panther. The 95-year-old son of Romanian-Jewish immigrants, Lee was a genius and great innovator in the comic book industry –…

Shaking things up and raising the profile of clients

Diana Ruff, founder of She Devil Productions, talks about how to make an impact in an increasingly visual world

Shaking things up and raising the profile of clientsDiana Ruff is founder of She Devil Productions. What’s She Devil Productions and when did you start the company? Ruff: In 2012, I was heavily involved in broadcast, media production and documentary work. Most of this was for various other production companies and I said to myself it’s my turn. I’ve done well for others,…

The Super Bowl ads get punted in Canada – again

Donald Trump may take the credit, but you can blame CTV/Bell Media and the CRTC

The Super Bowl ads get punted in Canada – againNow that the nation is deep into the seasonal gridiron grind, it’s time to talk money, TV and some serious Canadian angst. No, this isn’t about why the Canadian Football League can’t draw flies in Toronto. This is about the ads, the rights and all the money that makes football a fantasy land for fans…

Rhodes cultural policy is a template for Canada

The Greeks believe that supporting the arts and culture is not a luxury but an investment in human progress

Rhodes cultural policy is a template for CanadaThroughout the ages, Greece has created a significant footprint and an inspiring legacy in the arts and culture. Hardly a day goes by when we don’t recognize the foundational endowments to the modern arts and culture made by ancient Greece. Renowned Greek philosophers, architects, sculptors, poets and playwrights have left their mark for future generations.…

Stephen Harper returns, and he has plenty to say

The former Conservative prime minister has advice for us on Trump, economics, immigration and more

Stephen Harper returns, and he has plenty to sayStephen Harper is back. After flying under the radar for the last three years, Canada’s former prime minister has returned to the arena, albeit not as an active politician. Instead, he’s a commentator with several messages to impart, all of which are packaged in his new book Right Here Right Now. Not everyone is impressed.…

The man who shot Billy the Kid

Pat Garrett has been maligned for killing his "friend" in a "cowardly" way. Neither indictment is persuasive

The man who shot Billy the KidTo the extent he’s remembered at all, Pat Garrett (1850-1908) is known as the man who shot Billy the Kid. Reputation-wise, it’s been a mixed blessing. Although the shooting happened in Garrett’s capacity as a sheriff hunting down a convicted murderer, the fictionalizing of the Old West and the power of Hollywood storytelling often cast…