Talented Nova Scotians behind the scenes at The Halifax Film Company are ready to shine in the international film and television spotlights. A $3-million investment in the production company by Nova Scotia Business Inc. (NSBI) will help it expand its business and open up new markets. The investment was announced today, Sept. 2, by Economic Development Minister Ernest Fage, Halifax Film Company chairman Michael Donovan, and Stephen Lund, president and CEO of NSBI. “The team at Halifax Film are no strangers to success,” said Mr. Fage. “Their skill and commitment to excellence in animation, television and film are testaments to Nova Scotia’s creative advantage.” With NSBI’s equity investment — in the form of convertible preferred shares — the 131 people working on productions for The Halifax Film Company will move forward on projects that will create more opportunities for the Nova Scotia film and television sectors. “We greatly appreciate the confidence NSBI is showing in our sector by way of their equity participation,” said Mr. Donovan, winner of the Academy Award for best documentary feature, Bowling for Columbine. “We believe strongly that Nova Scotia offers the right mix of elements to enable international creative success and we are proud to be part of that.” “Having already built Salter Street Films, Michael Donovan and Charles Bishop are a proven management team,” said Mr. Lund. “Now they’re expanding their experience and creativity at Halifax Film at exactly the right time in the international television and film market.” The company produces high-quality, cost-competitive productions. It has a number of projects in development, including a feature film based on retired Lt.-Gen. Romeo Dallaire’s book, Shake Hands with the Devil: The Failure of Humanity in Rwanda. Production of the feature film has recently been approved for $3.5 million in Telefilm Canada financing. The Halifax Film Company produces the multi-award winning, hit comedy series This Hour Has 22 Minutes; season two of the Gemini award-winning pre-school, stop-motion animation series POKO; and Lunar Jim, a co-production with Alliance Atlantis Communications. All three series are produced for CBC Television. The company has recently completed several productions, including Body Of Knowledge, a new documentary series for the Discovery Health Network; season three of Open Book with Mary Walsh for CBC Television; and the drama pilot NORTH/SOUTH. “Nova Scotia’s vibrant film industry has grown to involve thousands of creative, dependable people whose efforts are helping to make Nova Scotia better known and more attractive to new business, immigrants and tourists,” said Ann MacKenzie, chief executive officer of the Nova Scotia Film Development Corporation. “The Halifax Film Company is a key player in the industry, regularly creating compelling shows that put Nova Scotia on the forefront of the film industry nationally and internationally.” The Halifax Film Company Limited is a production company that develops and produces original film and television programming. The company manages and co-ordinates all aspects of a program, including developing original ideas, purchasing literary rights, arranging production financing, carrying out production and post-production, and exploiting worldwide distribution rights. Nova Scotia Business Inc. is the business development agency for Nova Scotia. Led by the private sector, it is the investment attraction arm of the province and helps companies in Nova Scotia meet their growth potential through business advisory, export development and financing services.