Canadian Screen Awards: Charles Officer, Holly Dale And Adrienne Mitchell

Ahead of the Canadian Screen Awards Creative Arts and Performance ceremony taking place tonight, we spoke to nominated Directors Charles Officer, Holly Dale, and Adrienne Mitchell.

All three DGC Ontario Directors are nominated in the Achievement in Directing – Drama Series Category. We spoke to them about their nod from the Canadian Academy, what makes their episode CSA-worthy, and the most rewarding part of Directing their nominated work.

Charles Officer 

How does it feel to be nominated for a Canadian Screen Award for Best Direction, Drama Series

It feels wonderful to be nominated among Directors who I respect and admire. Receiving this recognition is an honour and a bit of a dream come true. 

What makes “One Drum” a stand out episode?

It was such a blessing to work with Shannon Masters fantastic script which bravely tackles the difficult subject of an Indigenous boy experiencing abuse. 

What stood out and resonates for me was the emotional content and powerful performances in this episode.

What is the most rewarding thing about Directing Coroner?

It is rare to work with creative leaders in television who truly empower your voice. I loved working with Showrunner Morwyn Brebner and lead Director Adrienne Mitchell, who offered the space and trust necessary to dig into the work passionately. The diverse writing team assembled on Coroner is just brilliant and also rare. I am so grateful for the experience.

Adrienne Mitchell

How does it feel to be nominated for a Canadian Screen Award for Best Direction, Drama Series

It feels great. I am so honoured to be recognized among this talented group of Directors!

What makes “Fire Pt. 2” a stand out episode?

I had the fortune of Directing this tantalizing concluding episode which resolved a mystery seeded throughout the season. It was a high-stakes episode. The tension and suspense we built between our lead character, Jenny Cooper, and her nemesis, Kelly Hart, had to land in a sizzling, surprising and poignant way. It’s a testament to Morwyn Brebner’s brilliant writing and the incredible acting chops of Serinda Swan and Nicola Correia-Damude that we got to the places we needed to unveil the complex psyches of these two characters.

What is the most rewarding thing about Directing Coroner?

What I love about Directing Coroner is that it can be so surreal and wonderfully weird. Its tone is so unique, and I love how the story can swing from crime investigation to the wacky personal drama of the characters and so effortlessly mix the absurd with the poignant. As the lead Director envisioning the series with Morwyn Brebner, I wanted to make a cinematic stamp and push the boundaries around how we shoot series television and make the audience work for it. The crew and creative team we work with, especially the incredibly talented DOP, Samy Inayeh, has contributed so much to creating the beautifully strange vibe of Coroner.

Holly Dale 

How does it feel to be nominated for a Canadian Screen Award for Best Direction, Drama Series

Being nominated by your peers is always rewarding. I appreciate it. Transplant was a special project for me, and I had a wonderful experience making it. Normally, I’m not looking for a pilot on medical shows. What attracted me to Transplant was the emotional story about an immigrant doctor struggling for acceptance in his adopted country.

What makes “Pilot” a stand out episode? What is the most rewarding thing about Directing Transplant?

The most rewarding thing for me was learning about the world of Syrian refugees and their challenges in this country and humbly interpreting that world. It presented me with that rare opportunity to bring my creative vision to a totally new and vastly unique world of stories and characters. I also had the great opportunity of working with some genuinely fabulous actors and producers who were committed to telling an honest and true story. It was a “perfect storm” experience that rarely comes along in this business.

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