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ACTRA TORONTO Launches AccessAbility DEMO REEL: New Casting Tool for Performers

TORONTO – Karl Pruner, President of ACTRA Toronto Performers, is pleased to announce the launch of ACTRA Toronto’s new AccessAbility demo reel. Developed to increase exposure for our talented professional performers with disabilities, the new casting tool will be available to casting directors, producers and directors.

“For most actors with disabilities, access to audition rooms is limited or the necessary support needed to audition, such as an ASL interpreter or audition sides in Braille is not available,” said ACTRA Toronto’s Diversity Chair Jani Lauzon. “The AccessAbility demo reel brings the audition to the industry professional, a small step towards our long-term goal of totally accessible audition facilities.”

The ACTRA Toronto Diversity Committee, in tandem with the AccessAbility Task Force, produced the AccessAbility demo DVD to showcase auditions by deaf, blind, mobility impaired and developmentally challenged performers – members of ACTRA Toronto. AccessAbility Task Force Chair Sheila Boyd hopes that the AccessAbility demo reel will be as effective as Mainstream Now, the highly popular magazine-style catalogue of visibly diverse performers and performers with disabilities.

The launch screening of AccessAbility demo reel will take place Tuesday, August 15, 2006 5:30 p.m. at ACTRA Toronto (625 Church St., 2nd floor, Toronto) call Carol at 416-768-3336 for elevator access

Toronto International Film Festival adds children’s program to screenings

TORONTO — A new all-ages program at next month’s Toronto International Film Festival will showcase the best of contemporary international children’s cinema, organizers say.

"These films will captivate, delight and inspire audience members of all ages, and for the first time adult festival-goers can bring along their young friends and family," program director Jane Schoettle said Tuesday in a release.

Films in the Sprockets Family Zone will include a 3-D animated comedy called The Ugly Duckling and Me (Ireland/Denmark/France/Germany), Hans Christian Andersen’s classic fairy tale about an ugly duckling who turns into a beautiful swan is reinvented in this innovative 3D animated comedy. Ratso, a success-starved rodent impresario is forced to hide in a duckling village and persuades the villagers that he is the father of a stray ugly duckling. Ratso and the ugly duckling set off on a perilous journey towards their big breakthrough, but dangerous foes, teenage problems and unexpected paternal feelings lie ahead.

The adventure tale The Hairy Tooth Fairy (Argentina/Spain) One fateful day, a vivacious little girl named Lucía, loses a tooth. Santiago, her unemployed father, and Pilar, her mother, reassure Lucía by telling her that the Hairy Tooth Fairy (a mouse named Perez) will come to her bedroom to collect her tooth, leaving some money in its place. But what would normally be a routine trip for the legendary rodent takes an unexpected turn for the worse when a pair of heartless and malicious scoundrels kidnaps Perez in order to take his fortune for themselves. Lucía, with the help of her cousin Ramiro, sets out to rescue Perez, thus beginning a memorable adventure

Lastly, the spy adventure Alex Rider: Operation Stormbreaker (United Kingdom). Tells the story of Alex Rider, a normal teenager who is reluctantly brought into the world of espionage and international intrigue. After his uncle dies in mysterious circumstances, Alex is recruited by Mr. Blunt to assist MI6 by going undercover to see what suspected crook Darius Sayle (Mickey Rourke) is up to. Soon Alex discovers that his uncle was a spy himself, and was murdered by Yassen Gregorovich, one of the world’s most dangerous assassins. Armed with the latest high-tech gadgets, and determined to avenge his uncle’s murder, Alex must face a series of dangerous obstacles in a mission that will save the lives of millions. The film also stars Ewan McGregor, Bill Nighy, and Alicia Silverstone.

The gala presentation will be the documentary The White Planet, a Canada/France co-production that follows the change in season from winter to spring at the North Pole and how the seasons affect various animal species.

The festival, running Sept. 7 to 16, will also feature seven films commissioned in Vienna to celebrate the 250th anniversary of Mozart’s birth.

"Most of the filmmakers are well-known to festival audiences and they have all done a magnificent job responding to the stimulating challenge," said film festival director Piers Handling.

"These are not music films, or period pieces; they are works that speak eloquently to today’s issues."

By: TO411daily Staff Writer

Entertainment One Income Fund Announces Second-Quarter 2006 Financial Results

TORONTO, Aug. 14 /CNW/ – Entertainment One Income Fund (TSX: EOF.UN), a major distributor of home entertainment products, reported its financial results for the second quarter ended June 30, 2006.

"Entertainment One’s sales totaled $112.3 million in the second quarter of 2006," said Darren Throop, President and Chief Executive Officer. "The sales gain of $16.3 million from a year earlier was due primarily to the inclusion of Koch Entertainment for three months in the second quarter versus one month in the same period of 2005." The Fund acquired Koch on June 1, 2005.

"Distributable cash also showed an improvement in the second quarter on a year-over-year basis, if acquisition and related financing and debt repayment activities are excluded," Mr. Throop said. "Our statements showed a decline in distributable cash from $4.1 million in the second quarter of 2005 to $2.2 million in the second quarter of 2006. However, acquisition and related financing activity added $2.1 million to the 2005 number and debt repayment reduced the 2006 number by $1.0 million. Excluding these acquisition and related financing and debt repayment activities, distributable cash from operations in the second quarter of 2006 and 2005 are $3.2 million and $2.0 million respectively.

In the first half, excluding acquisition and related financing and debt repayment activities, distributable cash from operations increased by $1.4 million to $6.7 million from $5.3 million in the same period of 2005.

The second quarter is typically a seasonally slow period for the Fund’s business and its results for the period are not indicative of full-year results. In past years, excluding the impact of the Koch acquisition, approximately 35-to-40 percent of the year’s sales occurred in the fourth quarter in the lead up to Christmas. Koch’s results are also seasonal, but less so than the balance of the Fund.

As previously announced, Entertainment One suspended cash distributions effective June 2006 and restructured its credit facilities with its lender at the end of July. As the Fund focuses on making significant debt repayments, it does not expect to resume monthly cash distributions on Fund and Class B units for at least the balance of 2006.

Avril Lavigne and Brendan Fraser make list of most powerful Canucks in Hollywood

TORONTO, Aug. 15 /CNW/ – For the second year in a row, Canadian Business magazine reveals its annual Celebrity Power List, a ranking of Canadian entertainers who demonstrate serious clout in La-La land. Movement on the list-always a healthy sign-indicates Canada continues to produce serious talent. There are even two fresh faces: Avril Lavigne (No. 7) and Brendan Fraser (No. 10).

Other players on the list include Jim Carrey (No. 1), Pamela Anderson (No. 2 after slipping from the top spot on the list in 2005) and Mike Myers (No. 6). A few didn’t make the list, but came close enough to be considered junior power players. Among them is Ryan Gosling, who scored a major hit with real-life sweetie and list member Rachel McAdams (No. 8) in 2004’s The Notebook; Kevin Zegers, who starred alongside Felicity Huffman in 2005’s Transamerica; and Shawn Ashmore, who played Iceman in the X-Men trilogy.

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