A look toward Canada’s future

At Saturday’s Golden Sheaf Awards, ‘We Are Canada’ was awarded the Golden Sheaf for Documentary Series.

The award culminated a day in which the first episode of the series was screened on May 26 in the city.

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“We Are Canada celebrates the next generation of talented and passionate change-makers whose works areshaping and defining our future in imaginative ways,” details www.whitepinepictures.com. “With young filmmakers at the helm, each episode of this prime-time documentary series and its online iteration follows present-tense narratives that will move and inspire. The hour-long episode features three life-affirming stories tied together by a theme. Featured forward-thinking innovators are making new discoveries and connections across many disciplines, including science, technology, politics, business and the arts. We Are Canada will introduce viewers to the young Canadians who are shaping our future as a nation.”

The series is also notable for its creator and co-executive producer Ken Dryden.

Dryden might be best known as a former National Hockey League goaltender with Montreal and as a Hockey Hall of Fame inductee.

But he also served as a Liberal Member of Parliament from 2004, also serving as a cabinet minister from 2004 to 2006, and is a lawyer, businessman, author, and now involved in film.

Dryden was on hand for both the screening and awards night. He told those attending the screening the idea for the series arose out of Canada’s 150th anniversary in 2017.

Such anniversaries are generally a time of reflection on the history of a country, said Dryden, but he saw it as an opportunity to look forward as well at “what we can be.”

The questions became simple; “what kind of Canada do they want? What kind of world do they want to live in?” he asked.

It is a situation where Dryden said we have an opportunity to “not be a passenger to the future.” It is a chance to be “a driver,” he added.

It’s a natural idea, offered Dryden.

“You want what you do to have an effect on those who come after,” he said.

Collectively, Dryden said having a vision of what Canada should look like, and then allows a chance to identify obstacles to that happening, and then working to overcome such obstacles.

Dryden floated the idea to CBC and the series was born, searching out people doing unique and outstanding things in Canada. He said such people are everywhere, beginning with a viewpoint “everybody knows somebody who is doing something special.” He added, “… the somebody might be you or your kids or grandkids.”

What we do has importance because in part “we are what we do,” said Dryden.

The “future-shaping” things people are doing today will have its biggest impact into the future.

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