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A scene from "Corner Gas": The agency that oversees Canada's TV awards was roundly criticized when its juries ignored the popular sitcom starring Brett Butt. (handout)
A scene from "Corner Gas": The agency that oversees Canada's TV awards was roundly criticized when its juries ignored the popular sitcom starring Brett Butt. (handout)

Awards

Canadian TV and film awards body, dogged by criticism, replaces entire board Add to ...

The agency that determines Canada's top awards for film and television has replaced its entire board of directors.

The overhaul at the Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television follows recent controversies over Genie and Gemini nominations that snubbed big TV and film stars.

The academy runs award bashes for both the Genies, which honour the best in Canadian film, and the Geminis, which honour the best in Canadian television.

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It raised eyebrows in 2009 when Corner Gas, widely considered Canada's most popular sitcom of all time, was shut out of the nominations in its final season. The following year, the Genies largely ignored the widely acclaimed debut of Quebec phenom Xavier Dolan, I Killed My Mother.

And for years, CTV has declined to submit its news coverage for consideration in the news categories.

Effective immediately, the academy says its new 12-member board will be chaired by Hotel Rwanda producer Martin Katz and feature members from all areas of film, television and digital media.

They include documentary director and producer Barry Avrich, eOne Films co-president Bryan Gliserman, Alliance Films marketing honcho Mark Slone, and Astral Television Networks boss Kevin Wright.

"The composition of this active new industry board presents a real opportunity to reinvigorate the academy," Katz said Wednesday in a release.

"Now we can better connect our current members with our corporate partners and reach out to some 400,000 professionals working in the Canadian media industry today."

Plans for change include the creation of a national advisory council "to ensure major regions are represented."

Following the upcoming Geminis bash on Sept. 7, set for broadcast on CBC-TV, the academy says it will also create a new awards governance committee "to review the rules and regulations governing the Gemini and Genie awards."

The agency has long been dogged by criticism over how well it represents the entertainment industry.

After Dolan's snub, then-vice chair Kevin Tierney noted that Genie nominations are determined by juries made up of academy members. He admitted they can sometimes be "aberrant affairs."

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