By popular request, here’s the audio file of the Home Grown Talent panel, where Alberta Culture Minister Lindsay Blackett made his controversial “shit” comment. I don’t have my audio editing software on my laptop so it’s the full session and in WMA format. Listen from 37:50 for the context of Blackett’s question (Peter Keleghan is speaking then). Note the panel answered the question; they didn’t object to the premise.
EDIT: The panel at the Banff World Television Festival was this:
Home Grown Canadian Talent – The Key To Your Success Is On The Marquee
Zaib Shaikh, Actor, Producer, Writer, Director
Kenny Hotz, Film Maker, Actor, Producer, Director, and Writer
Peter Keleghan, Actor
Eric McCormack, Actor & Producer
Jason Priestley, Actor, Director
I'm not one to make comments very often, however I am one of those lucky ones that recieved one of Mr. Blackett's stock letters telling me how in control his office was of the situation in Alberta, so I feel I have to throw in my 2 bits.
My name is Dan Stoddart and I am a former film worker from Alberta. I say former because now I make my home in amazing Osoyoos B.C..
A few years back I realized that the film industry was starting to look a little slow so I thought, why not move to a small town and start promoting it as a viable film location. I moved my family to the Crowsnest Pass and did just that, and it worked. It did not take very long before I was able to get a documentary maker to come down and use the area for a WWII scene for his project. I was also able to secure the area as a location for a feature film from England before we decided to move to B.C..
My point here is, in Alberta if you want something to happen, you have to do it by yourself. There's no safety net or government office that will lift a finger for you unless the person responsible for the area feels he/she can get kudos for it. It's like the television show Deadwood with how is all run. Here in B.C. it is quite a bit different, but I'm not going on with it.
From a person with experience, all I can say is Minister Blackett is truly clueless and if he keeps getting support from folks, it will only strengthen his cause. But here's the rub, anyone who watches this native Ontarian (Mr. Blackett) can tell you what his cause is, No-one knows what he's doing! It changes constantly like someone with ADD. I wonder if he is trying to shore up the CGI industry and then "BOOM" now he's onto script writing?
More to come…
Thanks as always for your tireless efforts acknowledging, prodding and supporting Canadian TV. I did listen to the entire discussion you kindly made available. You provided the opportunity to put the Minister's remark/question in context; perhaps giving him the benefit of some doubt. Having listened to it, I can't see or hear for a moment what difference it makes. He blurts it out inelegantly and barely intelligibly and moves on to a secondary and equally poorly thought out and phrased question…sort of. The fact that no one from the panel took real umbrage with his remarks isn't necessarily surprising and certainly not proof of their agreement.
I'm not outraged by his mild profanity. I'm not outraged with his broad generalizations. I am deeply disappointed that someone in that particular position and portfolio would traipse out that old canard of a criticism. More disappointed still that he seemed to genuinely 'not know' the answer to his own comment…it wasn't really a question, was it? Was he not in the room when Peter Keleghan was speaking?
No, Mr. Blackett's not the Devil. But he's certainly no Saint for those of us in Canadian TV, either.
The difference is that when the news first broke, media were taking 140 character tweets and the word of bloggers who weren't in the room for what went on. Later they got the actual quote, later they got the actual context. I don't want to be in the position of pundit so I wanted to make the audio available so people who weren't there could judge for themselves with the facts rather than sensationalism and the usual political bullshit.
And I think it's very much worth noting that the buzz among the people I talked to was how Kenny Hotz in both his sessions – including one that was not focused on the Canadian industry – slammed Canadian television without offering any insight into the issue himself. The MLA's comments only gained currency with the distorted media coverage. The guy clearly should know more about the industry he's supposedly involved in, and he could have chosen his words more carefully, but I started TV eh because Canadian television executives said the same thing he did five years ago in that very room.
I don't give a shit, pardon the pun, what people believe after hearing the context, but I'm offended at the initial media distortion fuelled by people wanting to get some publicity for themselves by fuelling a controversy.
Don't get me wrong. I understand and respect your decision to provide the opportunity for context. I suppose we just have different definitions of media distortions. I didn't find the story overblown or sensationally covered by anyone – but maybe we are looking in different places. Nor am I calling for the guy's head on a platter. But given his position, I don't mind holding his feet to the fire for a minute or two.
As for the comments, loose thoughts and ramblings made by Kenny Hotz, and his lack of insight….honestly, did anyone really expect more of him? He did his "thing", his "shtick". Whenever he was speaking it was difficult to remain engaged as a listener. He added nothing to the discussion but perhaps the organizers might have expected that.
Perhaps you’d like to publish your blog in PowerPoint while we’re at it?
Oooh, witty, Joe. I'll assume you can read so know I didn't have the resources to convert the native file from the recorder. Maybe get someone to explain the concept breaking news to you, though.