UNION Pictures announced today the appointment of Ian Cooper as Chief Operating Officer (COO), effective immediately.
Ian Cooper has spent more than a decade as a legal and strategic advisor to media, entertainment and technology companies. He started his career in the Technology Group at Torys LLP, practiced with entertainment and technology boutique Stohn Hay Cafazzo Dembroski Richmond LLP, and served as General Counsel of Syncapse Corp., a global provider of social media management solutions. Prior to receiving his Juris Doctor (with Honours) from the University of Toronto, Ian worked as a management consultant with a leading New York based firm while also running his own business representing amateur and professional hockey players. Ian is a graduate of The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, where he obtained a Bachelor of Science (Econ.) with a concentration in Finance and graduated Summa Cum Laude.
“We are absolutely delighted to have Ian join Union Pictures,” said co-founder Robin Cass. “Ian will be an ideal addition to our company, as we embark on an exciting period of development.”
Added co-founder Sandra Cunningham, “Ian’s impressive track record in the media, entertainment and technology sectors is fantastic and his diversity of business experience and leadership expertise will be a huge asset to Union Pictures.”
“I am excited to play a key role in guiding Union Pictures in its next phase of growth. I have enormous respect for the company’s vision, and I am thrilled to be joining its growing team,” said Ian Cooper.
UNION Pictures is a distribution and production company based in Toronto. The ongoing aim of the company is to produce and release a steady stream of commercially viable and critically acclaimed Canadian and foreign films. Visit http://unionpictures.ca.
For media inquires, please contact:
George Stromboulopoulos intervews Don Shebib and Jayne Eastwood for The Hour.
Ottawa — The Honourable Steven Blaney, Minister of Veterans Affairs, attended the premiere this evening of the new film Billy Bishop Goes to War, which is based on the award-winning play of the same name.
Also on hand for the screening were John Gray and Eric Peterson, who wrote the original two-man play in 1978 and star in the new film adaptation.
“It’s wonderful that one of our most decorated pilots from the First World War has been immortalized on the silver screen,” said Minister Blaney. “Films and other works of art like Billy Bishop Goes to War have a unique ability to take us into the hearts and minds of the men and women who have served our country so courageously.”
Billy Bishop, who was born in Owen Sound, Ontario, shot down a record 72 enemy planes in the First World War. Along with fellow Canadian flyers such as W.G. Barker, Raymond Collishaw and A.A. McLeod, he quickly became a household name in post-war Canada and his legendary exploits have been shared around the world.
“As we approach Veterans’ Week and Remembrance Day, it is fitting to remember the story of such a remarkable Canadian hero,” said Minister Blaney. “I hope this new film will help generations of Canadians better understand the great debt we owe to our service men and women, both past and present.”
To learn more about Veterans Affairs Canada’s programs and services, visit veterans.gc.ca.
CBC News Posted: Oct 21, 2011 10:08 PM ET
Though made on a tiny budget in 1969, Don Shebib’s film Goin’ Down the Road made a big splash in Canada and abroad.
The tragic tale of two young men yearning to escape crushing poverty in the Maritimes by moving to big-city Toronto has become a Canadian cinema classic and is considered among the country’s most influential films.
Upon its release in 1970, it was hailed for its gritty documentary-like style, honest performances and startling lack of a happy ending, as seen in Hollywood movies.
Now, four decades later, Shebib revisits the story, its characters and the memorable 1960 Chevy Impala in his sequel Down the Road Again, opening Friday in Vancouver, Toronto, Halifax and Sydney, N.S. This time he explores the theme of redemption.
“I think people who see the sequel will be intrigued [and] want to see the original one — almost as much as people who saw the original would want to see this one,” the filmmaker told CBC News.
By JENNIE PUNTER
Saskatoon-based film and TV producer Angel Entertainment has acquired minority ownership in Toronto-based Union Pictures, the companies announced Saturday at the Toronto Film Festival.
Angel toppers Bob Crowe and Wally Start said the new partnership is geared toward growing the domestic market for Canuck feature films.
“The distribution sector is rapidly evolving — we are impressed with the team’s plans for expanding relationships with filmmakers and the Canadian marketplace,” Crowe said in a statement.
Angel is best known in Canada for the popular supernatural crime series “Rabbit Fall,” which is distributed by eOne TV Intl.
Cam Haynes, who ran the Toronto fest’s Film Circuit for many years, founded Union in 2008; the company will be releasing Barbara Willis Sweete’s “Billy Bishop Goes to War,” world preeming at the festival, and has several projects in development.
On behalf of all the staff at Union Pictures and the DOWN THE ROAD AGAIN production team, we extend our condolences to the family and friends of Cayle Chernin. She was a wonderfully energetic and enthusiastic person and will be dearly missed by all who knew her.
For more on Cayle’s life, her website.
Kathleen Robertson, Anthony Lemke and Tedde Moore have joined the cast for Down the Road Again, the sequel to Don Shebib’s classic 1970s film Goin’ Down the Road from indie producer Union Pictures.
Shooting on the Canadian feature from writer/director Shebib starts September 27, and includes the original cast of Doug McGrath, Jayne Eastwood and Cayle Chernin.
In 2002, Playback rated Goin’ Down the Road the fifth-best Canadian film ever, according to a reader poll.
With the sequel set 40 years after the original film, Down the Road Again begins as Pete McGraw, played by McGrath, is retiring from his days as a Vancouver postman and then going east to answer a plea from a late pal.
Down the Road Again is produced by Robin Cass and executive produced by Sandra Cunningham and Anna Stratton.
Telefilm and the OMDC are on board as financing partners.
Shooting on the sequel is set to run to October 18 in and around Toronto.
Read more: Playback online
Toronto, September 24, 2010 – Union Pictures today announced that on October 7, 2010, Canadians will have a one-time opportunity to enjoy the critically acclaimed feature documentary BEST WORST MOVIE and the cult classic TROLL 2 back to back, on the big screen.
Already being hailed as one of the “top reviewed films of 2010” by Rotten Tomatoes, BEST WORST MOVIE, directed by Michael Paul Stephenson, follows a small-town dentist and a self-deluded Italian filmmaker as they struggle to come to grips with their role in what is arguably the worst movie ever made: TROLL 2.
The double bill will screen on Thursday, October 7 in Cineplex Entertainment theatres in Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal, Calgary, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Ottawa, Saskatoon, Regina, Victoria, Kingston, and London and in Empire Theatres in St John’s, Halifax, New Glasgow, and Moncton. Director of BEST WORST MOVIE and child-actor of TROLL 2, Michael Paul Stephenson and actor George Hardy will be in attendance at the Toronto premiere for this exclusive, one-night engagement. Other special guests will be in attendance for the premiere in major markets. After October 7, the films will continue to play independent theatres across Canada.
To celebrate the release of BEST WORST MOVIE, Union Pictures has joined forces with Birthplace Inc., a creative and media innovation company, to create an online campaign celebrating the best worst content found all across the web. The website, bestworst.ca, features best worst photos, videos and links, as well as information on BEST WORST MOVIE, including the official trailer, show times and how to purchase tickets.
“When we saw BEST WORST MOVIE we knew, with its perfect balance of humour, sadness and inspiration, it would be a film that would be appealing to movie-goers across Canada,” said Cam Haynes, CEO of Union Pictures. “Our launch of a one-night only engagement with the director in attendance is unprecedented for a theatrical release and the perfect way to experience both films.”
About BEST WORST MOVIE
In this hilarious and heartfelt story about the strange nature of celebrity, a sunny small town dentist and a self-deluded Italian filmmaker struggle to come to grips with their role in the worst movie ever made. The result, directed by Troll 2’s child star, Michael
Paul Stephenson, is a tender offbeat journey that pays homage to lovers of bad movies and the people who make them, while investigating a deeper story about the catharsis of redemption and the humanity that exists in making even the worst movie ever made.
About Union Pictures
Union Pictures is a production and distribution company founded in 2008. Working closely with filmmakers and content providers, Union Pictures develops, produces and releases commercially viable and critically acclaimed film & television projects into the Canadian and international marketplace.
Michael Paul Stephenson is available for interviews. For more information or to request an interview please contact Andrea Grau at firstname.lastname@example.org or 416-347-6749
Toronto – UNION PICTURES acquires the Hot Docs hit BEST WORST MOVIE!
“Strangely moving… insightful… consistently funny and smart about celebrity, vanity and bad movies – and what makes them lovable.”
–John Anderson, Variety
BEST WORST MOVIE is a hilarious documentary about the makers and stars of TROLL 2, a horror film from 1980‘s that is widely regarded as the worst movie ever made. Directed and produced by Michael Paul Stephenson, the grown-up child star from TROLL 2, the documentary features the director of the original film, Claudio Fragasso, and its star turned dentist, George Hardy, as they grapple with their dubious place in cinematic history.
When BEST WORST MOVIE hits Canadian screens this fall, Union pictures will launch a special event-style release in select theatres across Canada.
Dates and details of the release, as well as special guests, will be announced soon.
Toronto – Union Pictures, D Films and Sony Pictures Home Entertainment Canada are proud to announce the release of the DVD for High Life, which is now available at your favourite rental and retail stores/outlets. (Including Amazon or Chapters)
The Canadian DVD release of the film Maclean’s called “A Canadian answer to the Coen brothers, with a Tarantino kick” contains the following special features:
- Exclusive interviews with the cast and director Gary Yates
- Behind-the-scenes featurette
- English Captioning for the hearing impaired
- A new transfer of the film directly from the original master materials
- Discrete Dolby 5.1 and 2.0 Audio Mixes for improved audio quality
For more information on the “High Life” DVD please visit the film’s official website at: http://www.highlifethemovie.com
“High Life is an often brilliant, funny crime story. [...] If you didn’t see High Life when it was in theatres… don’t make the same mistake when it shows up at your corner video store.”
- Ian Hamilton, CBC, ‘DVDs in 7′ on Sirius Radio
Toronto – Union Pictures, in association with Triptych Media and Buffalo Gal Pictures are pleased to present the comedic heist High Life to audiences across Canada. Directed by Gary Yates and written by Lee MacDougall, High Life opens on the heels of successful screenings at International Film Festivals in Berlin, Edinburgh and Shanghai and a North American Premiere at the 2009 Toronto International Film Festival. High Life will play at Toronto’s Scotiabank Theatre and Winnipeg’s SilverCity Polo Park starting on Friday, January 15. Additional screenings across Canada will be announced in the coming weeks.
Starring Timothy Olyphant, Stephen Eric McIntyre, Joe Anderson and Rossif Sutherland High Life features the music of April Wine, Creedence Clearwater Revival, 3 Dog Night and New Order.
Based on the play by Lee MacDougall, High Life is a comedic heist story from the flip-side of the 80’s consumer dream. It’s 1983, and petty-thief Dick gets a surprise visit from his unhinged former cellmate, Bug. When Bug gets Dick fired from his first straight job, Dick devises the perfect plan for some much needed, fast cash. The problem is, his crew is so rife with loathing that just getting to the bank’s front door will take a miracle as the plan starts to unravel before Dick’s eyes.
For more information, please visit www.highlifethemovie.com
Toronto – Union Pictures, in association with Triptych Media and Buffalo Gal Pictures are pleased to announce the screening of Gary Yates’ comedy feature High Life at the 2009 Whistler Film Festival at December 5th at 1pm. Starring Timothy Olyphant, Stephen Eric McIntyre, Joe Anderson and Rossif Sutherland, this comedic heist features the music of April Wine, Creedence Clearwater Revival, 3 Dog Night and New Order. Co- star Stephen Eric McIntyre will be in attendance. Ticket Passes and Packages are now on sale. For more information, please visit http://www.whistlerfilmfestival.com/
High Life premiered at the 2009 Berlin International Film Festival, and was well received at the Shanghai and Edinburgh Film Festivals before having its North American Priemere at the Toronto International Film Festival. It will be released in theatres across Canada on January 15, 2010.
Based on the play by Lee MacDougall, High Life is a comedic heist story from the flip-side of the 80’s consumer dream. It’s 1983 and Dick and his pals have been botching jobs and racking up prison time for years, but this time Dick has the perfect plan for the perfect heist and enough dough to buy he and his posse some “self-respect”. With the arrival of his slightly unhinged cell-mate, Bug, on the scene its going to take all Dick has just to keep his crew from killing each other, let alone pulling off the heist. Ripe with humour and manic, high-wire tension, High Life’s lovable losers will stop at nothing as they bungle their way through their pipe dream of easy money and easy street.
For more information, please visit www.highlifethemovie.com