ALISON REID is an award-winning director who began her career as a stunt coordinator and second unit director. She formed Free Spirit Films to produce projects diverse in genre but similar in their exploration of the human spirit. Reid’s television directing credits include four episodes of HUDSON & REX as well as SAVING HOPE, HEARTLAND, and MURDOCH MYSTERIES. Her Second unit directing credits include THE UMBRELLA ACADEMY (Netflix). Reid’s first feature length comedy, THE BABY FORMULA, had a worldwide film festival run, sold internationally, won the Audience Award at the 2009 Inside Out LGBT Film Festival, Best LGBT Film at the 2009 Nashville Film Festival and was nominated for the Golden Zenith Award at the 2009 Montreal World Film Festival. Reid is a director alumnus of Creative Women’s Workshops’ Women in the Director’s Chair Program and a producer alumnus of the Canadian Film Centre. She received the 2007 Crystal Award for Emerging Director from DGC/WIFT.


Producer JOANNE JACKSON is an award-winning documentary and television producer who has been the driving force behind many compelling, thought-provoking projects over the last 25 years. She has worked as an in-house producer and as a production executive for three networks (YTV, WTN and Discovery). Her projects have garnered eight Gemini and one Canadian Screen Award nomination. Feature documentary films include The Messenger (2015), The Big Wait (2010) and Long Haul Big Hearts (2007). The Messenger, a highly acclaimed and visually thrilling film that unravels the mystery surrounding the decline of migratory songbirds, is a Canada/France co-production. Released theatrically in the USA, UK and Canada, it has screened in over 130 US cinemas, 88 Canadian cinemas and community venues (including week long runs in several cinemas), and at many international film festivals. Accolades for The Messenger include a 2016 Canadian Screen Award nomination for ‘Best Cinematography in a Feature Documentary’; 2015 Hot Docs ‘Top Ten Audience Choice’ film; Winner, 2015 ‘Best Conservation Program’ Jackson Hole Wildlife Film Festival; 2016 Best of Fest and Best Theatrical Documentary, International Wildlife Film Festival; Special Mention for ‘Best Documentary’, CinemAmbiente 2015, Italy; and Best Environmental Film Prize, 2016 Festival de l’Oiseau et de la Nature, Abbeville, France.


PAUL ZIMIC began his work in the movie business at the age of 14 working as an usher in his hometown movie theatre. He graduated university studying communications and took a job in Toronto buying television advertising on behalf of film distributor, Twentieth Century Fox. Over the next 10 years, Zimic enriched his passion for movies by coordinating the international sales department for Alliance Independent Films. He later moved to Communications Manager at the Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television and eventually Associate Publisher with the industry trade magazine, Playback. Zimic witnessed the true capacity of television while selling advertising and sponsorships for the CBC during the 2004 Summer Olympics Games. In November 2004, Paul formed Grindstone Media, a film and television production and distribution company.