April 25, 2023

By Ginaya Jesmer, APTN Communications Assistant 

On April 16, the Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television announced the winners of the 2023 Canadian Screen Awards in 145 television, film and digital media categories. These also included inaugural nominations in gender-neutral performance categories for lead and supporting performers in film and television. APTN was honoured to receive an award for its news programming and to be a broadcast partner for two additional award winners: 

  • APTN Investigates: “In Plain Sight” for Best News or Information Program 
  • Buffy Sainte-Marie: Starwalker (Insight Productions) for Best Performing Arts Program
  • Jennifer Podemski for the Academy Board of Directors’ Tribute 

APTN Investigates is the first Indigenous investigative news program in Canada. Produced by award-winning journalists, APTN Investigates offers hard-hitting investigative reports that expose injustices and uncover the truth for First Nations, Inuit and Métis Peoples. Winning this year’s award for Best News or Information Program, “In Plain Sight” is an investigative report by Kenneth Jackson and Cullen Crozier that reveals the dark underbelly of the sex trade playing out in plain sight on the streets of Kenora. With Indigenous women being the main target, APTN Investigates wanted to demand answers and share some of these women’s stories. “In Plain Sight” delves into the experiences of Ruth Machimity, and the report sparked the OPP to launch a criminal investigation into one of their officers, who was ultimately charged with breach of trust and soliciting sexual services.  

Recorded at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa, Starwalker is a momentous musical celebration of Cree singer-songwriter Buffy Sainte-Marie. In addition to a performance from Buffy and her band, those she has mentored take the stage during this 90-minute special to honour her life’s work as an award-winning musician, composer, visual artist, educator and activist. Having performed at several past editions of APTN Indigenous Day Live (2009, 2012, 2016, 2019 and 2021), Buffy’s impact on APTN has been tremendous. We were thrilled to recognize her influence by broadcasting Starwalker and making it available for viewers across Canada via APTN lumi. 

Jennifer Podemski was presented the Academy Board of Directors’ Tribute, a special award that honours a Canadian individual for their extraordinary impact on the growth of the Canadian media industry. Jennifer is an Anishinaabe/Ashkenazi actor, writer, director and producer with over 30 years of experience in the film and TV industry. Her screen credits include Dance Me Outside, Reservation Dogs, The Rez, Blackstone and many more. She also has a production company called Redcloud Studios Inc., which worked on The Other Side, one of APTN’s most popular series. Jennifer co-created, co-wrote and was a showrunner for the upcoming six-part series, Little Bird, a highly anticipated Crave and APTN co-production. Moreover, she launched The Shine Network Institute, a non-profit organization dedicated to celebrating Indigenous women in film and television. 

Catch ground-breaking stories from APTN Investigates every Friday on APTN and watch more of the shows mentioned above on APTN lumi!