June 24th, 2024

THIS ARTICLE IS SPONSORED CONTENT

Pitch your unique local story for a chance to receive $20,000 in production funding grants


SPONSORED CONTENT

TELUS STORYHIVE celebrates 10 years with the biggest edition yet: 80 grants, $20,000 each.

Pitch your short documentary idea and receive $20,000 in production funding, training, mentorship and distribution. Photo by Len Morissette

Have you heard the buzz? TELUS STORYHIVE is celebrating 10 years of community support of local content creators, and you can be part of this momentous milestone by applying to their biggest edition yet, the 2023 Anniversary Documentary Edition.

If you’re a content creator in Medicine Hat, Lethbridge, or any other eligible Alberta or B.C. community, celebrate with STORYHIVE by pitching your short documentary idea, and you could be one of 80 content creators to receive $20,000 in production funding, training, mentorship and distribution on TELUS Optik TV and Stream+.

STORYHIVE is looking for a wide range of non-fiction stories including stories where people and organizations create meaningful change; technology that is revolutionizing people’s lives; work that is protecting and sustaining the environment, health care that’s transforming communities and groundbreaking agricultural practices.

Grand Prairie urban Indigenous filmmaker, Len Morissette, received grants for the 2018 Indigenous Edition to make the drama Lost and the 2018 Documentary Edition to create Momentum—From Nothing to NASCAR. STORYHIVE was a driving force behind Morissette’s two underdog stories, a theme close to his heart.

STORYHIVE can empower you to create something personal. Photo by Len Morissette

“If there were films to watch when I was young, like I created with STORYHIVE, something that reflected my life, it would have helped me a lot,” reveals Morissette. “It’s exactly what propelled me to be the filmmaker I am, because I wanted more Indigenous representation in the film industry and nobody was out there telling stories that were relevant to me.”

“Everything was pooled from local talent, and STORYHIVE was the spark needed to highlight stories important to me.”

Lost is about a reformed Indigenous gang member, who discovers when he’s released on parole how dysfunctional his family has become. Semi-autobiographical, Morissette explains that the lead character, Tero, and various scenes echo a lot of his real-life experiences. “It’s a reflection of a journey, and what I witnessed when I was out in the world, having to forge, and all the cycles of how many friends were lost.”

“The little girl that plays Meadow, is my daughter Summer, who basically grew up on a film set with me. I wrote the song she sings, ‘I can do anything,’ and always told her that one day we’d be able to tell a story together.”

Morissette says STORYHIVE empowered him to create something personal. “I felt uplifted, comfortable and supported in expressing my artistic voice in this program, which helped me be the person I am today.”

Momentum captures underdog Jamie Krzysik, a Grand Prairie race car driver trying to achieve the next level of NASCAR. His story has all the hallmarks of Morissette’s: hard work, determination, making the most of opportunities, and the passion to make his dream a reality and find success, and in Morissette’s case—filmmaking.

“What stands out about my STORYHIVE experience is the mentors, Kirsten Carthew on Lost, and Momentum’s Adam Storgie, and their helpful advice. They gave me more self-confidence and validation that our team was doing good, because up north, we had no reference. Adam taught me how the tax credit system works and how to have partnerships, which are both necessary to make bigger productions.”

“My advice to filmmakers thinking of applying for the Anniversary Edition, is to tell stories authentic to you, put yourself out there, surround yourself with a good team and be open to working with your mentors.”

Since 2013, STORYHIVE has been able to support a community including thousands of local content creators across B.C. and Alberta, providing over $52 million in production funding and creating a safe space for storytellers to hone their skills and bring projects they care about to life.

“We are thrilled to be celebrating 10 years of supporting local content creators across B.C. and Alberta, especially in regions like Lethbridge. STORYHIVE is built on local storytelling and representing the people that make our communities so amazing. It is exciting to be accepting applications for our biggest edition yet with our Anniversary Documentary Edition. We hope to see many diverse stories from the people of Medicine Hat. If you have an idea to pitch, we encourage you to apply and share your story,” says STORYHIVE Southern Alberta Territory manager, Shaun Cathcart.

“I think STORYHIVE is a very effective program that’s uplifting the film community of Indigenous and non-Indigenous voices,” says Morissette. “They’re a great group of people and I want to thank them for everything they’ve done for me and my career. They’re unsung heroes.”

If you are a new and emerging content creator residing in a rural or urban community in B.C. and Alberta, you can apply. If you have a compelling story, now’s your chance to uplift your community with the power of your locally-reflective content, told from your perspective.

Intake is now open. Visit storyhive.com/apply and submit your application by February 28, 2023.

Since 2013, STORYHIVE has been dedicated to supporting and amplifying local stories and voices. It supports and accelerates local talent, creativity and development through production funding, training, mentorship and distribution, to help B.C. and Alberta content creators share the stories that are important to them and their communities.

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