Genies touch down - Metro US

Genies touch down

The stars will be out in Ottawa this Saturday, but audiences from all over Canada can tune in when the best in Canadian film is celebrated at the Canada Aviation Museum.

Several hundred thousand people are expected to tune into the 29th annual Genie Awards, not only to see who walked away with the hardware, but to check out the some of Canada’s most recognizable celebrities who are acting as the host and presenters, said Sara Morton, CEO of the Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television.

“It’s been a tremendous year,” said Morton. “The slate of films nominated are quite diverse.”

Although there’s “no question that Canadian films face a challenge in terms of getting sufficient screen time,” Morton said Canadian film is becoming increasingly well received.

“They reflect a Canadian sensibility and a Canadian sense of humour, and they can be moving, thought provoking and extremely entertaining,” she said.

The day before the awards, celebrities and industry representatives will be arriving in Ottawa by VIA rail from Montreal and Toronto, said Morton.

What at-home viewers will see in the 90-minute time slot will include coverage of the red carpet cocktail event before the awards, where celebrities will be photographed and interviewed, followed by the awards and comedic skits.

In addition to Canadian funnyman Dave Foley, who will act as host of the 2009 awards, actors Sarah Polley and Gordon Pinsent will act as presenters.

“I’m extremely honoured to host the Genie Awards, and I’m looking forward to celebrating the achievements of my fellow Canadians in Ottawa,” said Foley, a Kids in the Hall alum.

“As the host, we always seek someone who is well known, Canadian and someone who is humourous and can make it a fun evening,” said Morton.

Other presenters include Éveline Gélinas (Necessities of Life), Marianne Fortier (Mommy Is at the Hairdresser’s), Kevin Newman from Global National and Karine Vanasse (Polytechnique).

• The 29th annual Genie Awards will be held at the Canada Aviation Museum in Ottawa Saturday. The awards will be broadcast on Global and IFC at 9 p.m. ET/PT.

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