REEL CANADA hosts National Canadian Film Day on April 22. (REEL CANADA/Special to the Langley Advance Times)

National Canadian Film Day will celebrate canuck cinema on April 22

Movie lovers are encouraged to join in online movie screenings and livestream conversations

The seventh annual National Canadian Film Day (NCFD) on Wednesday, April 22nd aims to unite Canadians in a celebration of cinematic culture by moving screenings and events online.

The centrepiece of programming on April 22 will be “CanFilmDay Live,” an interactive livestream broadcast from 6 to 10 p.m. on YouTube and canfilmday.ca.

It will feature interactive activities, conversations with filmmakers and other industry professionals, short videos submitted by Canadians, and “Happy NCFD” messages from around the world.

Jack Blum, executive director of Reel Canada, said he believes that Canadians are hungry for an opportunity to be part of something larger, and especially something Canadian.

Television programs as well as Canadian films including The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz, Remember, Meatballs, The Sweet Hereafter, The Trotsky, and Bon Cop Bad Cop will be made available to view.

“It’s a chance to come together and give each other a big virtual hug,” Blum continued. “And we’ve been thrilled by the warm response our plans have received from filmmakers and community partners alike.”

Confirmed guests who will take part in our livestream programming include Atom Egoyan, Colm Feore, Mina Shum, Philippe Falardeau, Vinay Virmani, Patricia Rozema, Emily Hampshire, Peter Keleghan, Mary Young Leckie and Don McKellar.

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There will be Canadian films on CBC, CBC Gem, Encore+, Netflix, Hollywood Suite, Crave, the NFB, as well as many others platforms.

Audiences of all ages are invited with their friends, neighbours, classmates, colleagues, communities and fellow citizens through online “Watch Parties” and on the livestream.

Special programming will be made available to more than 150 retirement residences and long term care facilities, including video introductions from the filmmakers.

“We hope these offerings will bring some comfort and much-needed cheer to our most vulnerable citizens, who are in isolation and away from their families and loved ones,” Blum added.

There will also be a wealth of family-friendly programming during the day, to help Canadian parents looking for activities to do with their kids.

Games, printable colouring pages, online scavenger hunts and other fun content, as well as a list of kid-appropriate films that Canadians can access for free will also be part of the family-oriented program.

In the days to come, NCFD will be posting a detailed schedule for the livestream as well as family-friendly activities, and a toolkit to help enthusiasts organize their own “Canadian film watch party.”

People are encouraged to visit canfilmday.ca, where the curated list of 20+20 films is now available.

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