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The Danish Poet: A Canadian Oscar Contender

It's the same old story - Canadians don't seem to recognize talent at home until someone recognizes it abroad. This time it's a charming tale of luck and love called The Danish Poet, nominated for an Oscar in the animated shorts category. For the National Film Board here in Canada it's the 69th nomination. Others included the touching documentary Hardwood and the incredible achievement of animated short Ryan, which brought home the Oscar in 2005 for its portrayal of animator turned panhandler Ryan Larkin.

I wonder though how many have taken it upon themselves to watch these brilliant Canadian works - if not, here's the opportunity. The NFB has posted The Danish Poet online for everyone to see and waived their $2 viewing fee at their John Street location too. Though the animation style might not be as compelling as Ryan the story it weaves is just as complex, told through the eyes of one conceived by parents who met in Copenhagen (just like me) whose destiny could just as easily not have been fulfilled. Luck can play a big part in love and life.

Last year luck brought me to Sao Paulo, Brazil for an event showcasing the work of the NFB. The Brazilians I spoke to were amazed and all the films shown were very well received. It made me extremely proud of the industry we've built in Canada. Knowing that the NFB has now garnered the most Oscar nominations for an independent outside LA doesn't hurt either.


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