Excerpt from “Debates & Proceedings” –
1st Session – 27th Legislature of the Legislative Assembly of Saskatchewan
N.S. Vol. 54 – No. 47A Wednesday, May 16, 2012
Pg. 1529, 1530
Ms. Chartier: Yorkton Film Festival
Ms. Chartier: — Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I rise today to highlight a very special and highly anticipated event taking place in Yorkton next week, the Yorkton Short Film & Video Festival or YFF. The longest running festival of its kind, the YFF has become one of Canada’s top film and video festivals in North America. Because of its excellent reputation, the festival attracts high-quality, creative entries year after year after year.
Established in 1947 from the vision of James Lysyshyn, the Yorkton Film Council set out to encourage the production of films in Canada. In 1950, Lysyshyn’s vision became a reality, and the Yorkton International Documentary Film Festival was born. This year the Yorkton Film Festival is researching and writing its history as part of its 65th anniversary celebration slated for May 24th to 27th, 2012.
When the festival began, many were doubtful that it would succeed as Yorkton was seen to be too small and too isolated for a major documentary competition. Over the decades though, the festival has overcome the odds. The fact that it continues after 65 years is largely due to the work and dedication of the people of Yorkton and the film industry of Canada. Clearly, Mr. Speaker, this film festival is loved by many. It inspires people to come together in a celebration of culture and creativity. It gives Saskatchewan people a sense of pride and identity.
It is my pleasure to take a moment in this Assembly today to applaud everyone involved in the YFF, from the organizers to the supporters to the board of directors and of course to the many volunteers. At a time when the future of the film industry in Saskatchewan is bleak, a festival like this further underscores the importance of the film industry, arts, culture, and the creative economy to the development of our province. Thank you.