Statement by Christa Dickenson on the death of François Macerola, former Executive Director and Chair of Telefilm Canada (1995-2002)

Montréal, November 8, 2018 – Today, with the death of Mr. Francois Macerola, Canada’s cultural milieu lost a longstanding ally and leader who possessed a unique vision and an innate gift for communications. We pay tribute to him for all that he achieved as head of some of our country’s key institutions, including Telefilm Canada as Executive Director (1995 – 2001) and Chair of the Board (2001 – 2002).

François Macerola’s passion for culture supported and stimulated the development and promotion of our homegrown creative talents over the last four decades. A lawyer by training and born diplomat, he never failed to highlight our industry’s immeasurable cultural and economic value, earning much appreciation across Canada and many other countires around the world, including China.

At Telefilm, Mr. Macerola greatly contributed to our industry’s international growth, helping to expand our cinema’s presence at festivals and markets around the world, and spearheading a remarkable increase in coproduction activity.

He was instrumental in setting up the Canada Feature Film Fund, a major initiative that continues to effectively support our film industry. Moreover, it was during his tenure that Telefilm and the industry successfully turned their sights to what was then known as “multimedia”—now a thriving digital media industry. He helped forge the very first partnership between Telefilm and the private sector through the Canadian Television Fund, now the Canada Media Fund, with whom Telefilm remains an enthusiastic partner.

Throughout his career, François Macerola established himself as a visionary, builder, skilled strategist and leader with a talent for bringing people together. He was energetic, affable and open—he saw the big picture—and working with him was a stimulating experience. A man of action, he was also a loving and devoted father to his two children, Stéphanie and Louis.

In addition to Telefilm, François Macerola made his mark in positions held at the highest levels of the National Film Board of Canada (1976-1989), Place des Arts (2004-2008) and the Société de développement des entreprises culturelles du Québec (2009 -2014). He also had a successful career in the private sector, notably at Malofilm Distribution, the Cirque du Soleil (2003-2009) and, most recently, at QuébéComm. His knowledge and expertise made him a valued member of the board of such organizations as the Financière des entreprises culturelles (FIDEC) and the Fonds d’investissement de la culture et des communications (FICC).

On behalf of the Board of Directors as well as my colleagues at Telefilm Canada, I would like to offer my sincere condolences to François Macerola’s family and loved ones. Thank you, Mr. Macerola!