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Camelia Frieberg

(b. January 7, 1959 Toronto, Ontario)

One of Canada’s busiest and most accomplished independent producers, Camelia Frieberg studied music and anthropology at Bennington College in Vermont before beginning her career as a freelance journalist in Toronto. Her infatuation with film began when she covered the Toronto Festival of Festivals (now the Toronto International Film Festival®) and was inspired by Charles Burnett’s Killer of Sheep (1977). She decided to become involved with filmmaking and lived for a time in Los Angeles, where she worked on Burnett’s My Brother’s Wedding (1983).

Frustrated by a stint as production manager and second assistant director on raunchy teen comedies, she began to pursue projects with greater artistic integrity and got involved with a group of film school graduates in Toronto that included Atom Egoyan (with whom she would become a key producing partner), Peter Mettler, Bruce McDonald and Jeremy Podeswa.

After serving as production manager on Egoyan’s Next of Kin (1984) and delegate producer on Speaking Parts (1989), she set out on her own and produced Srinivas Krishna’s Masala (1991), Egoyan’s The Adjuster (1991), Exotica (1994) – winner of the Genie Award for Best Picture – and The Sweet Hereafter (1997), which earned two Academy Award® nominations, won eight Genie Awards, including Best Picture, and garnered the Grand Prix, the International Critics Prize and the Ecumenical Award at the Festival de Cannes. Her other production credits include Podeswa’s Eclipse (1995) and The Five Senses (1999), which was named Best Canadian Feature Film at the Toronto International Film Festival®.

Frieberg’s awards and recognition include the Women in Film and Television (WIFT)-Toronto Crystal Award for Excellence in Production and WIFT-Vancouver’s Woman of the Year Award. She was selected as one of only two Canadians featured in Variety magazine’s annual profile of the fifty hottest “behind the scenes” creative talents in North America, and serves on the board of Astral Media’s Harold Greenberg Fund. She also produced and directed the documentary film Crossing the River (1988), which aired on the CBC. Though not retired, she now limits her involvement in the industry in order to focus on life in rural Nova Scotia with her husband and two children.

Film and video work includes

Screwballs, 1983 (second assistant director)
Oddballs, 1984 (second assistant director)
Crossing the River, 1988 (director; producer)
In Desperate Battle: Normandy 1944, 1992 (TV; line producer)
The Fishing Trip, 1998 (executive producer)
Past Perfect, 2002 (producer)
The Blue Butterfly, 2004 (co-Executive Producer with Daniel Langlois)
Whole New Thing, 2005 (producer; executive producer)
A Stone's Throw, 2006 (director)