Canadian News

CFC and TD Present CFC Conversations: Black Excellence Speaker Series with Amanda Brugel and Clement Virgo

TORONTOFeb. 1, 2023 /CNW/ – The Canadian Film Centre (CFC) and presenting sponsor TD Bank Group (TD) are pleased to present the revival of CFC’s acclaimed Black History Month Speaker Series this February with two exciting public CFC Conversations celebrating Canadian Black Excellence, Black Futures and Black Stories.

On February 15, 2023 from 7 to 8 p.m. at Cineplex Cinemas Varsity and VIP in Toronto, special guest, award-winning actress Amanda Brugel (The Handmaid’s Tale, Kim’s Convenience, Infinity Pool), will take the stage for an insightful conversation celebrating Amanda’s prolific career and celebrated contributions to Canada’s screen industry.

Then, on February 22, 2023, from 7 to 8 p.m. at Cineplex Cinemas Varsity and VIP in Toronto, CFC alumnus Clement Virgo, one of Canada’s foremost film and TV directors, will discuss breaking boundaries, his storied career, and his most recent critically acclaimed feature, Brother.

Thanks to the generous support of TD, both events are free of charge and open to the public. They will feature a 45-minute onstage conversation followed by a 15-minute audience Q&A. Ticket information is available here.

“At TD, we’re proud to support Black History Month events and initiatives and year-round programming that help bring people together, amplify Black voices, celebrate Black culture, and advocate for change,” says Alicia Rose, Associate VP, Corporate Citizenship. “Through the TD Ready Commitment, the Bank’s corporate citizenship platform, we’re focused on helping break down barriers and drive progress towards opening doors for a more inclusive and equitable future.”

“We are so grateful for TD’s return as presenting partner for the revival of our Black History Month Speaker Series and for their continued support to amplify diverse voices and stories,” added E.J. Alon, Executive Lead, Creative Impact & Revenue, CFC. “We look forward to welcoming everyone to these events, for what promises to be an engaging conversation.”

AMANDA BRUGEL can currently be seen in the fifth season of the Emmy and Golden Globe-winning series The Handmaid’s Tale in the role of ‘Rita,’ opposite Elisabeth Moss, Yvonne Strahvoski and Ann Dowd. She recently joined the cast of Apple TV’s Dark Matter, opposite Joel Edgerton and Jennifer Connelly; CBC/HBO Max’s Sort Of, opposite Bilal Baig; and AMC’s Parish, opposite Giancarlo Esposito. On the comedy side, Amanda won the Canadian Screen Award (CSA) for Best Guest Performance in a Comedy for her work on Kim’s Convenience, and was a recurring judge on Season 2 of Canada’s Drag Race, earning her a 2022 CSA win for best judge/host in reality competition, alongside Brooke Lynn Hytes and Brad Goreski.

Amanda’s latest film, Ashgrove (2022 Glasgow Film Festival), which she co-wrote, produced and starred in, won Best Ensemble at the 2022 Canadian Film Festival. Additional recent film credits include Brandon Cronenberg’s Infinity Pool (Sundance 2023), opposite Alexander Skarsgard and Mia GothSugar Daddy (Whistler Film Festival 2021); and cult hit Becky, alongside Kevin James and Joel McHale. Other film credits include the Oscar nominated film Room, opposite Brie Larson and Jacob TremblayThe Education of Fredrick Fitzell, alongside Dylan O’BrienMaika Monroe and Hannah Gross; as well as the David Cronenberg feature, Maps to the Stars.

Born in Montego, JamaicaCLEMENT VIRGO is a Toronto-based creative and multi-talent with a long list of titles under his belt, including writer, producer, director and co-founder of Conquering Lion Pictures, a company he founded with fellow CFC alumnus Damon D’Oliveira, whom he met while participating in the CFC’s film residency program in 1992. Since then, Clement, who is now a Board Member at the CFC, has become one of Canada’s foremost film/TV directors and one of the leading figures in the screen industry.

His TV directing credits include Empire (Fox), The Wire (HBO), and the OWN network drama series Greenleaf (2017), on which he also served as Executive Producer with Oprah Winfrey. Clement’s most recent feature film Brother, based on the award-winning novel by David Chariandy, premiered at TIFF 2022. He directed and co-wrote the 2015 miniseries adaptation of Lawrence Hill’s The Book of Negroes, which was nominated for two U.S. Critics Choice Television Awards and four 2015 NAACP Image Awards. In 1993, Clement made a short film at the CFC that won Best Canadian Short Film at TIFF the same year. His first feature film, RUDE (also made at the CFC), premiered at Cannes in 1995 and played festivals around the world. His additional feature films include Poor Boy’s Game and Lie With Me, which played top tier festivals and sold in over 40 countries.

Since its inception in 2010, CFC’s Black History Month Speaker Series has welcomed previous icons like Pam GrierSpike LeeChris TuckerJohn Singleton and Lee Daniels.

For ticket information for CFC Conversations: Black Excellence Speaker Series, please visit:

SOURCE Canadian Film Centre

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