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03 November 2010

Toronto, November 3, 2010 – CFC (Canadian Film Centre) is pleased to announce that a new session of the successful Telefilm Canada Features Comedy Lab will begin November 15, 2010.

Chaired by internationally acclaimed comedic actor Eugene Levy, the Telefilm Canada Features Comedy Lab, a CFC Film program presented in collaboration with Just For Laughs, seeks to advance the comedy genre in Canada and generate comedies that achieve commercial and critical success. The Comedy Lab is Canada’s first advanced professional program designed to develop and package original theatrical feature-length comedies for Canadian and international audiences. Launched in 2009, the three-month course pairs experienced Canadian feature film producers, their writer and/or director teams and their comedy scripts, with the best comedy minds in the world to strengthen each script and increase packaging appeal for investment.

“There are some very heavy-weight people at the lab – just to get their ear is difficult enough in this business. These filmmakers are in a very privileged position,” said Eugene Levy.

 “The support from the superior level of talent that the CFC was able to integrate into the Telefilm Canada Features Comedy Lab has not only had an incredibly positive effect on the quality of our script, but has also generated awareness about our exciting new project both in Canada and abroad,” said Stephen Hegyes, Producer, Co-Chairman of Brightlight Pictures Inc. and a participant in the 2009 Comedy Lab.

“Canadians have always done well on the world comedy stage so we’re excited to see this program continue to attract strong interest and projects from experienced producers in its second year,” said Sheila de La Varende, Director of National and International Business Development for Telefilm Canada, “Holding the second session in L.A. will bring projects closer to decision makers in the US market.”

This year more than 40 teams applied for the five coveted spots that were determined by an international selection committee of comedy industry professionals.  Thrilled with the caliber of projects submitted, the committee this year chose to select six teams for the 2010 session.  Of the six projects selected, two were showcased at the inaugural Just For Laughs Comedy Boot Camp for Film held this past July in Montreal as part of the 2010 Just For Laughs Comedy Conference, and presented by the Telefilm Canada Features Comedy Lab.

The chosen projects and teams for the 2010 session are:

From British Columbia: Quadrant Motion Pictures’ men-behaving-badly comedy MY ASSHOLE NEIGHBOUR: producer Mary Anne Waterhouse, writer/director Andrew Currie and writer Robert Chomiak

From Alberta: Combustion Inc.’s romantic comedy NEARLY WED: producer Bruce Harvey, director/producer Grant Harvey and writer Jason Filiatrault

From Ontario: Darius Films’ western comedy COLD BLOODED SNAKES: producer Nicholas Tabarrok and writer Stephen Kunc

From Ontario: El Duo Motion Pictures’ buddy comedy THE WILD SOCIETY: producers Robert Scarborough and Shawn Myrick, writer/director Matthew Atkinson and writer Brendan Gall

From Ontario: Project 10 Productions’ horror comedy THE HOUSE THEY SCREAMED IN: producer Andrew Barnsley, writer/director Vivieno Caldinelli and writer Bob Kerr.

From Quebec: Cirrus Communications Inc.’s romantic comedy ATLANTIC GOLD: producers Antonello Cozzolino and Josee Vallee and writer John Hazlett.

THE HOUSE THEY SCREAMED IN and ATLANTIC GOLD were originally showcased at the Just For Laughs Comedy Boot Camp for Film where the projects benefitted from invaluable project feedback and insights from an esteemed panel of industry experts.

Mentors and guests for this session will be announced shortly.  

The three-year program is funded by Telefilm Canada through the Canada Feature Film Fund, the CFC and Just For Laughs.

The results of the inaugural comedy lab in 2009 were creatively rich and productive: in fact, production will begin in November on the workplace comedy feature Servitude from Buck Productions and 2009 Comedy Lab participants Victory Man Productions. Directed by Warren Sonoda and based on a script by Michael Sparaga (Sidekick), Servitude follows a group of frustrated waiters who band together and take over their restaurant for one glorious, revenge-filled night when they discover that they are all about to be fired. Maple Pictures will release the theatrical comedy in Canada. Sean Buckley and Michael Sparaga are producing. Guests of the Comedy Lab who assisted in developing SERVITUDE include Ivan Reitman (Director, Ghostbusters), Donald Petrie (Director, How To Lose A Guy In 10 Days), Etan Cohen (writer, Tropic Thunder) and Gloria Fan (Mosaic Media).

About Telefilm Canada
Telefilm Canada is a federal cultural agency dedicated to developing and promoting the Canadian audiovisual industry. Telefilm provides financial support to the private sector to create distinctively Canadian productions that appeal to domestic and international audiences. Telefilm also administers the Canada Media Fund’s programs. Visit

About CFC

CFC is Canada’s largest institution for advanced training in film, television and new media. A charitable not-for-profit organization, CFC is committed to promoting and investing in Canada’s diverse talent; providing exhibition, financial, and distribution opportunities for top creative content leaders from coast to coast. CFC makes a significant cultural and economic contribution to Canada by launching the country’s most creative ideas and voices in film, television and new media to the world. For more information please visit:

About the Just For Laughs Group
Founded in 1983, the Just For Laughs Group’s growth is concentrated on four major focal points: Festivals (in Montreal, Toronto, Chicago and Paris); television production (most notably Gags seen in 135 countries and on 95 airlines); live shows (Canadian tour dates for Jerry Seinfeld, Jeremy Hotz, John Pinette, Louis C.K., the Capital One Just For Laughs Comedy Tour, North American dates for Family Guy Live!, Arturo Brachetti’s show Change in London); and talent management. Its inaugural Montreal Festival 28 years ago is now the world’s largest and most prestigious comedy event welcoming 2 million people each summer. The Group has offices in Montreal, Paris, Los Angeles, Toronto and London.


For media inquiries, please contact:
Tamara MacKeigan, Communications Manager, CFC,
416.445.1446 x304