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Photo by Yeliz Atici 


Meet our Contest Judge & Mentor, 

Geneviève Appleton


Geneviève Appleton (B.A.A.Hons. Film Production, 1994, MFA Screenwriting, 2003) started her career as an actress in the 80s in film and TV projects such as KIDS OF DEGRASSI and ANNE OF GREEN GABLES, THE SEQUEL. 


She was Associate Producer of the feature film WILBY WONDERFUL, directed by Daniel MacIvor and wrote narration for the travel series GAP: GREAT ADVENTURE PEOPLE as well as two feature film documentaries, IN THE LAND OF THE MOOSE, directed by Harold Arsenault, and PARTLY PRIVATE, directed by Danae Elon, which won the best New York Documentary at the Tribeca Film Festival. 


For her company, White Wave Productions (est. 1992), Geneviève has written, produced, directed and co-edited several films.  Her documentary A GARDEN'S FAMILY aired on Vision TV and ACTOR'S TRANSFORMATION, about the extraordinary work of acting teacher Deena Levy and her students in NYC, premiered at the Female Eye Film Festival and aired on Bravo! Canada.  


Her short dance film CALLING THE MINSTREL was screened at the 2010 Olympics' Cultural Olympiad Digital Edition, the Atlanta Film Festival, and the Izmir International Short Film Festival.  


She was invited to screen and give a talk on her documentary about the EAST TIMOR PEACE MISSION at the 20th Anniversary Commemoration Ceremony and Conference in Timor-Leste, where it was also shown on East Timor Television. With Colleen Wagner, she co-directed and co-produced the documentary WOMEN BUILDING PEACE about women in Africa rebuilding their lives and societies after GBV, war and genocide. 


She is currently producing the interactive documentary BIOLOGY OF STORY, written and directed by Amnon Buchbinder ( 


Since 2003, Geneviève has taught Screenwriting and Media Production at Bilkent University, Sheridan College, University of Toronto and York University, as well as in her private workshops.



Geneviève will be joined by fellow judges to determine the Top 3 Grand Prize Winners from the top 6 scripts. 


Finalist judges include Maureen Dorey, Elise Cousineau, and Bryce Mitchell.


Maureen Dorey is a freelance analyst and story editor and instructor who helps writers find their voices and renew their story inspiration.  Her production credits include Hidden, written by David Shamoon, directed by Angieszka Holland and produced by The Film Works, nominated for the Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film and three Genies, including Best Screenplay; Amal, written by Shaun and Richie Mehta, also nominated for six Genies, including Best Screenplay; and Blackbird, written by Jason Buxton and produced by Marc Almon, an Official Selection of the Toronto International Film Festival 2012, winner of the Claude Jutra Award, and nominated for Best Screenplay at the 2013 Canadian Screen Awards.  Dorey's television credits include Moccasin Flats (Season II) and Random Passage, an eight-hour mini-series directed by John N. Smith, produced by Passage Films and Cité-Amérique for broadcast on CBC and RTE (Eire).  Other credits include The War Between Us, Lyddie, and On My Mind


Story Editor Mentor to the Canadian Film Centre's Writer's Lab for the past 13 years, Dorey also teaches in the Film Department at York University and has served as an instructor to LIFT, WIFT, the National Screen Institute, Praxis Film Works, NIFCO and B.C. Film.  She acted as story editor on several Canadian Film Centre feature film projects, including Nurse.Fighter.Boy (nominated for 10 Genie Awards, including Best Screenplay), The Dark Hours, Siblings and Show Me.




Elise Cousineau is the Head of Development and Production Executive at Sienna Films, a Toronto-based independent feature film and television production company.  


In addition to managing Sienna Films’ slate of television and feature film development, Elise’s credits with Sienna include one-hour drama series Combat Hospital (2011) for Shaw and ABC, Canada’s #1 

Original Drama of the Year and Playback Magazine’s International Co-Production of the Year; mini-series Diamonds (2009), for CBC, ABC and Canal+, which was nominated for 9 Gemini Awards including Best Mini-Series;  and feature film How She Move (2008), which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and was subsequently distributed by Mongrel Media in Canada and Paramount Vantage/MTV Films internationally.  Upcoming is feature film Unless, a Canada-Ireland co-production adapted from the novel by Carol Shields and starring Catherine Keener.


Since beginning work with Sienna Films in 2005, Elise has also participated in various capacities in the development or production of Titanic (mini-series 2012, ITV/ABC/Shaw), The Cry of the Owl (feature film 2009), Altar Boy Gang (mini-series 2007, CBC), One Dead Indian (MOW 2006, CTV) and Weather Report (documentary 2009).


Elise holds a BFA in Film Production from York University and an Honours BA in Creative Writing & 

English Literature from Concordia University.  She has produced several short films including Silver Road (2007), 13.5 (2008) and The Young Prime Minister (2009).




Bryce Mitchell is a graduate of Ryerson Polytechnic University Image Arts - Film Studies program and the Canadian Film Centre's Producer Lab. 


He has worked in production with Shoes Full of Feet Inc. where he produced the Genie-nominated 

At Home By Myself... With You, as well as other notable companies such as Victorious Films (Twist, Century Hotel), Northwood Productions (Cake, Wild Roses) and Serendipity Point Films (Barney's Version, Men With Brooms). 


Bryce joined the Meridian team in 2009 as Development Manager under Glenn Cockburn and subsequently took on the role of Agent in 2010.  In 2014 he spear-headed the formation of Meridian Artist’s Kids and Animation division, now the pre-emanate destination for directing and literary talent within the sector throughout Canada.

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