If you check today’s Leader-Post there’s a column by Murray Mandryk calling on the Wall government to reinstate the Film Employment Tax Credit. This comes after the Saskatchewan Chamber of Commerce and SaskFilm released a study on Tuesday detailing the economic benefits derrived by the province from the FETC, and delivering a sharp rebuke of the uninformed way in which the government went about killing the credit.

Speaking of the film industry, in the last couple of issues of the print edition of prairie dog (Oct. 18 and Nov. 1) we’ve run ads for the Vancouver Institute of Media Arts. On Nov. 7 at 6 p.m. they’re holding an information session in Regina about enrollment options for students who might be contemplating a career in media arts. The session will be conducted by the director of admissions Janet Cacchioni, and it will be held at the Delta Hotel (1919 Saskatchewan Dr.). You can RSVP for the session by emailing info@vanarts.com or calling 1-800-396-2787 ext. 104.

 While the institute does offer diploma programs in acting and TV and radio broadcasting, it also offers courses in animation, visual effects in TV and film, video game design and web development. On the weekend, the PostMedia chain ran an article about a woman who initially trained as a visual artist at York University but has since gone on to work in animation for Industrial Light & Magic in far-flung places like Singapore and San Francisco, and now Vancouver, where there’s apparently a booming animation scene that has essentially doubled in size in the last couple of years.

One interesting point that the woman makes is that while computer and technical skills are important, the fine art training that she had was especially valuable because ultimately what you’re doing in the animation/visual effects area is an art form.

It’s just another example of how the creative industries are growing in importance in our world and any government that wants to position the community it represents for prosperity in the 21st century needs to realize that.  

Here’s a link to the Vancouver Institute of Media Arts’ website. And to give you a sense of the fun that awaits, here’s the trailer for a film the woman is currently working on: