Ingrid Veninger The Adrienne Fancey Best Film Award
Ingrid Veninger Writer, Producer, Director, Actor
Born in Bratislava and raised in Canada, award-winning writer/producer/director Ingrid Veninger formed pUNK films in 2003 with the mandate to produce high quality independent feature films with a 'nothing is impossible' manifesto. For her unstinting devotion to that vision, Ingrid is receiving TheWIFTS Foundation - The Adrienne Fancey Best Film Award 2011.
Ingrid has been working in the film and television industry for more than 20 years. Her start in show business was in an advertisement for Bell Canada at age 11 and as a teen actor in CBC's series Airwaves, leading to various roles in over 60 productions.
In 1991, she produced the Gemini nominated performance-documentary Standards with Jeremy Podeswa, featuring Sarah McLachlan, Holly Cole and Molly Johnson. Since then, she has worked as a producer with Jane Siberry, Jacob Wren, Julia Kwan, Alexandra Rockingham, Charles Officer, Anais Granofsky, Boris Mojsovski, Simon Reynolds and Peter Mettler (Genie Award Winner, Gambling, Gods and LSD).
Graduating from Norman Jewison's Canadian Film Centre in 2000, she produced the short film Three Sisters On Moon Lake (2001), which won numerous awards and was invited to more than 20 international film festivals.
In 2003, under the pUNK banner and in collaboration with Degrassi alumnus Anais Granofsky, Ingrid produced three features: Have Mercy, On Their Knees (winner of three Black Film and Video Network Awards), and the retro-future-Gothic-romance The Limb Salesman (2005).
With another close collaborator, Charles Officer, and continuing under the pUNK banner, Ingrid produced and co-directed Urda/Bone (2004), a lyrical love story shot in Austria and Germany and Hotel Vladivostok (2006), an improvised international collaboration chronicling 24 hours in the lives of 7 directors who meet for the first time at a Russian film festival and share their stories at a retro seaside hotel on the Sea of Japan. Veninger and Officer collaborated again in 2007 on Nurse.Fighter.Boy starring Clark Johnson (The Wire), premiering at TIFF and receiving 10 Genie Nominations, including Best Motion Picture, Nurse.Fighter.Boy was produced in participation with the CFC's Feature Film Project and remains one of the most successful CFC features to date.
In 2008, pUNK produced the self-financed independent feature Only (co- directed by Ingrid Veninger and Simon Reynolds). Only had its world premiere at TIFF, garnering critical acclaim and securing invitations and awards at festivals worldwide, including the Rome International Film Festival, Slamdance, and MoMA in New York. In 2009, pUNK self-distributed Only across Canada and was awarded Now Magazine's "Best Argument for self-distribution."
In 2010, pUNK completed Modra, Ingrid Veninger's debut feature as solo writer, producer, director. Making history as the first Canadian feature to shoot in Slovakia, Modra had its world premiere at TIFF, securing distribution with Mongrel Media. The film traveled to festivals across Canada and overseas, winning numerous awards including the Audience Award for Best Feature at the Bratislava International Film Festival. In January 2011, Modra was officially selected as one of Canada's Top Ten features of 2010, establishing Ingrid as "the DIY queen of Canadian filmmaking"*
Hot-on-the heels of Modra, Ingrid Veninger returned to TIFF this year with i am a good person/i am a bad person. Written within a month, self-financed, shot in 4 countries, with a crew of 2, and an international cast of 23 professional and non-professional actors, Veninger took her bold, personal filmmaking to a new level by co-starring with her real-life daughter in this very intimate and honest portrait of a woman as artist and mother. "Ingrid Veninger has been recognized as one of the most compelling female voices in Canadian Film".**
Ingrid has long been involved in helping newcomers understand and gain entrance to the film and television world. In addition to having worked as Creative Investment Analyst for Telefilm Canada's Low Budget Independent Feature Film Assistance Program, Ingrid has been a key participant in numerous DIY Distribution and Marketing panels, including 'Making the Transition from Shorts to Features' for the Worldwide Short Film Festival and serving as guest speaker for TIFF's Bootcamp and Higher Learning Program, free to high school, university and college students and faculty.
Currently, Ingrid is a leading guest speaker at CFC (Canadian Film Centre), Producer Mentor for NSI's FASP (Featuring Aboriginal Stories Program), a Masterclass teacher at LIFT (Liaison of Independent Filmmakers of Toronto), a member of PRO (Producer's Roundtable of Ontario), on the Board of Directors for Canada's First Weekend Club, and part-time film faculty at York University teaching 3rd and 4th year film students.
*Liam Lacey, Globe and Mail
**Damien Detcheberry, Festival du Nouveau Cinema