Filming in East Sooke
For the month of January, Victoria will be home to the cast and crew of the feature film The Devout—a crisis-of-faith drama about reincarnation and the power of belief, family and community.
Award-winning Writer/Director Connor Gaston (Godhead, ’Til Death, Bardo Light) completed the screenplay, about a father whose faith is tested when he begins to believe his daughter was an astronaut in a previous life, as his final Master of Fine Arts project for the University of Victoria Writing Program. He was awarded the Telefilm Microbudget Grant to produce the film, his debut feature.
The team is comprised of a number of UVic Fine Arts alumni, most notably Executive Producer Daniel Hogg (Two 4 One, Freshman’s Wharf), who mentored Gaston throughout his studies.
“UVic doesn’t have a formal film production program, but thanks to Daniel and a handful of other staff, students have the opportunity to learn about it,” notes producer and fellow UVic alumnus Amanda Verhagen (The Flash, Arctic Air).
With deep roots in the Victoria community, the project pays homage to the home of its director and other crew members by using existent British Columbian cities as the setting for the fictional story. Loosely based on true events, the unique subject matter has attracted actors Ali Liebert (Strange Empire, Bomb Girls), Charlie Carrick (Ally Was Screaming, Molly Maxwell), and Gabrielle Rose (The Sweet Hereafter, If I Stay) to fill the starring roles.
Principal photography on The Devout runs from January 8-31 in Victoria and surrounding areas. The project has been made possible by Telefilm, the BC Arts Council and Cinevic Society of Independent Filmmakers.
VI Business awards
Two Sooke business have been nominated in the 15 Annual Vancouver Island Business Excellence Awards. The event took place on January 22 at bear Mountain.
Nominated from the Sooke area were: Tugwell Creek Honey Farm and Meadery (Agriculture) and AOE Accumulated Ocean Energy (Technology).
Special Task Force on First Nations
The Capital Regional District (CRD) Board took an important step forward in building trust and promoting ongoing collaboration with First Nations governments, when it passed a motion to establish a Special Task Force on First Nations.
Building on the previous Board’s priority of improving relations with First Nations neighbouring governments, the new task force will meet with First Nations leaders to explore their interest in and discuss options for bringing their governments into the CRD governance and decision-making framework.
“This initiative underscores the CRD Board’s commitment to building bridges with our First Nations partners,” said CRD Board Chair Nils Jensen. “I look forward to the new opportunity to actively seek out areas of common interest with each unique nation and move towards reconciliation, mutual recognition and sharing of infrastructure and services.
The Special Task Force will be led by CRD Director Marianne Alto (Victoria), who will be joined in her new role by CRD Directors Maja Tait (Sooke) and Ryan Windsor (Central Saanich).
The first priority of the Special Task Force is reaching out to First Nations political counterparts and listening to their ideas and concerns.
“Through our role in providing regional and shared local government services, the CRD wants to ensure First Nations aspirations are respected, considered and supported,“ said Alto. “Key to this is taking the time to get to know one another, listening carefully, taking responsibility for past actions and following through on our commitments one step at a time.”
Over the course of the year, the Special Task Force will report back to the CRD Governance Committee and provide recommendations for actions to the CRD Board, with the goal of bringing First Nations neighbours to the decision-making table.
Song & Surf
Coming up quickly is the annual Song & Surf music festival in Port Renfrew in February. More information in next week’s issue of the Sooke News Mirror.