Christine Noël, NFB Christine Noël, NFB

Christine Noël, a veteran marketing executive at the National Film Board of Canada (NFB), has been appointed as the new executive producer of its French Program Animation Studio.

The NFB, which is based in Montreal, is Canada’s prolific, publicly funded producer and distributor of artistic films and media projects.

Here are the details of Noël’s appointment:

  • She will take up her new role at the head of the French Animation Studio on January 4. Part of her responsibility will be to help implement the NFB’s 2020–2023 Strategic Plan, which the organization stresses will give more agency to creators.
  • Since joining the NFB in 2001, Noël has held various positions across production and marketing, becoming head of marketing in 2015. She helped orchestrate award campaigns for animated shorts including Sunday, Wild Life, Me and My Moulton, Blind Vaysha, and Animal Behaviour, all of which received an Oscar nomination.
  • The NFB’s French Animation Studio was previously led by Julie Roy, who in May was promoted to director general of creation and innovation. Marc Bertrand, another veteran producer at the studio, acted as its interim executive producer.
  • In a statement, Noël said:

As executive producer, I will be privileged to support an approach to creation that emphasizes creators from all walks of life, as well as their artistic methods. It is in a spirit of continuity with regard to both production philosophy and programming guidelines, combined with my knowledge and understanding of audiences, that I will pursue the tradition that has made the NFB an internationally renowned, unique creative space.

  • Roy added:

With her deep knowledge of the institution and her recognized leadership, Christine Noël truly embodies the values of the NFB and the French Program Animation Studio. Her artistic sense, grasp of auteur animation, and unique expertise in marketing it, as well as the extensive network she’s built both in Canada and abroad, are valuable assets that will enable her to develop a stimulating vision for the filmmakers and team in place.

  • Falling production budgets at the NFB have recently caused tensions between artists and management. Last year, hundreds of filmmakers at the organization revolted against the reappointment of Claude Joli-Coeur, the NFB’s film commissioner. He subsequently promised closer consultations with creators both inside and outside the NFB ahead of the publication of the 2020–2023 Strategic Plan.
  • In December, we sat down for a two-part interview with Roy and Michael Fukushima, the executive producer of the English Animation Studio (who remains in his post). Read the first part here and the second part here.
  • As part of this week’s virtual edition of Les Sommets du cinéma d’animation, Noël will take part in a panel discussion about what it takes to mount a successful Oscar campaign (Friday, December 4, 2 p.m. French only).

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