Equus: We built the world around us with horsepower. But what is it that makes humans and horses so perfect for each other?

Message from the President and CEO


Valerie Creighton

Canada’s wealth of stories is as vast as our country and as diverse as its people. With a keen eye on the future, the CMF continued its work to deliver on our mission to guide Canada’s content and stories towards a competitive global environment by nurturing innovation, rewarding success, enabling a diversity of voice and promoting access to the exceptional work of our Canadian creators. 

In 2018-2019, the CMF pursued its efforts to improve representation in the screen-based sector and continued to implement a number of important measures to advance gender balance and Indigenous representation in Canada’s audiovisual industry. Thanks to the measures introduced two years ago and sustained through last year, the number of women writers in CMF-funded projects increased, with women making up over 44 per cent of writers. This is an improvement over previous years, when the share was around 35 per cent. Representation of women producers improved slightly from previous years, moving from just under 40 per cent to almost 50 per cent. The hiring of directors did not demonstrate as strong a commitment to gender balance, as the average was 31% percent women in director roles. However, this is an increase from previous years, when the share was from 16 to 20 per cent, depending on the genre.

The CMF continued its close collaboration with and support of the Indigenous Screen Office (ISO), which last year developed its activities with the creation of a new governance structure, an Advisory Circle, national consultation initiatives, and the commissioning of market research to inform the commercial marketplace strategy for Indigenous content. 

The CMF, in partnership with key industry organizations, the broadcast sector, major film studios and others in the entertainment sector, launched MADE | NOUS, a national branding effort and promotional campaign of Canadian content and talent. The impactful consumer-oriented marketing campaign to raise awareness, interest and pride in Canadian talent and content launched from the Oscars red carpet. Marketing assets include spots featuring top Canadian talent, as well as extensive national paid, earned and owned media assets. 

With the ongoing support of Google Canada, Bell Media, Deluxe Toronto, Telefilm Canada, and in partnership with film and television producers, distributors, broadcasters, unions, guilds and other industry associations, the CMF sustained content acquisition, as well as day-to-day operational and promotional efforts on the Encore+ YouTube channel. The channel last year garnered more than 40,000 subscribers and 7M lifetime views, with 58 per cent of views coming from outside Canada. Mix-marketing campaigns continued driving awareness and growing audiences of Encore+. 

In addition to these important milestones, the CMF maintained its focus on the effective management of its funding programs. The CMF continued to successfully deliver its mandate to support Canada’s audiovisual industry by investing $346.8M to finance the development, production, marketing and export of 1,292 television and digital media projects. Programs were almost fully subscribed at 98 per cent.

In 2018-2019, CMF funding triggered $1.4B in production activity across the country. Every $1 of CMF funding generated $4.08 in production activity, slightly lower than last year’s $4.14. This continues to serve as a clear example of the key role the CMF plays in the creation of over 179,000 sustainable jobs in Canada’s screen-based sector. This level of funding and support was made possible thanks to the continued support of our funding contributors, the Government of Canada and Canada’s cable, satellite and IPTV distributors. 

Faced with ongoing disruption in a fiercely competitive global marketplace, the CMF continued to be responsive by remaining nimble and introducing new measures, including a collaboration with the Shaw Rocket Fund to incentivize animation programming for children and youth.

Thanks to impressive sales beyond our borders, Canada’s stories increasingly reach global audiences, with producers reporting $184.0M in sales of 556 CMF-funded productions in 2018-2019. The quality of Canadian audiovisual content continues to be celebrated by audiences, both here at home and around the world, with CMF-funded projects receiving 900 award nominations, including 230 wins in 24 award ceremonies across the country. Internationally, CMF-funded projects received 39 nominations, of which 14 won awards in 14 different awards ceremonies, including the Emmy Awards, the Daytime Emmy Awards, International Emmy Awards, SXSW Awards and the Kidscreen Awards, to name a few. 

Despite the myriad of content options that are available to audiences and fierce competition for viewing, 24 CMF-funded productions delivered television audiences of over one million viewers in the 2017-2018 broadcast season. Three of these were in the English market, and 21 in the French market. The weekly per capita viewing to CMF-funded productions was 1.3 hours in the English market and 3.3 hours in the French market. Total measured visits to CMF-funded digital media projects were 22.2M in the Convergent Stream and 1.8M in the Experimental Stream.


Through the Convergent Stream, we financed the production of 492 and the development of 375 television programs. These were accompanied by 176 associated digital media projects, providing new platforms for audiences to engage with CMF-supported content. Convergent Stream production commitments amounted to $285.3M in 2018-2019 and triggered over $1.3B in production volume. 

Through the Experimental Stream, we invested $42.0M in 116 projects at the development, production and marketing stages, triggering $77.1M in industry activity. 

As a result of our continued agreement with Corus Entertainment, the CMF administered the Corus-CMF Page-to-Pitch Program for a sixth consecutive year. Through this program, 16 development projects were funded last year, totaling $725K.


Delivering on the CMF’s mandate to promote Canadian talent and content, the CMF partnered with 65 industry events and contributed expertise to an additional 44 industry events, both in Canada and abroad. Participation at these events allows the CMF to further promote Canada as a coproduction partner of choice and distribute industry intelligence.

Foster and develop

As an established go-to source for industry and market trends in the screen-based sector, the CMF sustained its efforts to identify and analyze the latest developments in the industry. This has allowed the CMF to remain nimble and informed of the latest advancements in the industry we serve. More importantly, the studies we commission, and the information we curate and share is increasingly invaluable to industry professionals in Canada and around the world. A total of 78 articles, including 55 paid articles, 23 articles authored by the Industry and Market Trends (IMT) team or content partners and 12 new research projects were published on the CMF Trends website. The annual Key Trends report was again published in Spanish, in addition to English and French versions. Finally, IMT launched English and French-language podcasts presenting case studies related to the industry.

Thanks to the invaluable leadership and guidance of the CMF Board of Directors, as well as the tireless efforts of all CMF staff and team members, and the CMF Program Administrator’s commitment to administer our programs with a focus on client service, the corporation is today on solid footing to deliver on its important mission to support Canada’s storytellers. 

The CMF program is successful thanks in part to the input we receive from the industry from coast to coast to coast and we are grateful for your insights, deep experience and intelligence.

I am always amazed by the level of dedication, talent and engagement of so many players in our industry. I look forward to seeing what the future holds for our screen-based sector, and hope that we all continue to work in partnership to fully embrace the opportunities the creative economy presents.   

Valerie Creighton
President and CEO

Back to top