BURNABY – B.C. based Screen Siren Pictures has been commissioned to develop and produce a four-hour historical documentary series about the people, forces and events that shaped the province of British Columbia. The series, “1871” (working title), is scheduled for broadcast and streaming in 2021, on the occasion of the 150th anniversary of the province's entry into Confederation.
“History documentaries are one of the most popular forms of storytelling – and B.C. histories even more so,” said Rudy Buttignol, President and CEO of Knowledge Network Corporation. “We have entrusted the team at Screen Siren Pictures to tell the story of key historical events and people that brought British Columbia in the Canadian federation and since shaped the province of today. The series will be authoritative, dramatic, disturbing and illuminating; drawing on historical texts by respected experts and based on well-founded research from a diverse range of perspectives, including American, Asian, British, Canadian, European, and Indigenous sources. Our goal -- classic documentary storytelling that stands the test of time.”
Screen Siren Pictures, led by Executive Producer Trish Dolman, will produce the series with Director Kevin Eastwood and Producer/Researcher Leena Minifie. Gelerah Derabi is the writer and Jennifer Chiu is also researcher.
“We are honoured to be working with Knowledge on telling the complex history of British Columbia for the past 150 years,” said Trish Dolman, President of Screen Siren Pictures. “As a proud British Columbian, it’s a privilege to be working with such a talented team to bring to life the story of this province through a multi-narrative approach that highlights the people, the families, the rebels and the dreamers that shaped what we now know as B.C. “
The Government of British Columbia has contributed $1 million towards the documentary series, which will be broadcast during British Columbia’s sesquicentennial in 2021.
“Our government recognizes the importance of filmmakers telling stories to explore how we came to know B.C. today,” said Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture Lisa Beare. “Gathering the voices of those who shaped our province will provide a lasting legacy for British Columbians to explore our rich history and is a meaningful way to mark B.C.’s 150th anniversary.”
1871 will be a landmark series for Knowledge Network. The project is currently in early stage development and will begin production later in 2019. 1871 is slated to premiere on Knowledge Network in July 2021.
About Knowledge Network
British Columbia’s Knowledge Network is a viewer-supported public broadcaster exploring the world through its commercial-free television and streaming services. Knowledge Network works in partnership with independent producers in British Columbia and Canada to develop and commission children’s and documentary programs that educate, inform and inspire. For more information, visit www.knowledge.ca
About Screen Siren Pictures
Established in 1997, Screen Siren Pictures is a leading independent film, television and digital media production company based in Vancouver, B.C. Screen Siren creates innovative, award-winning feature films, documentaries and television. With a focus on international co-productions and partnerships, Screen Siren brings creative energy and established local and international industry relationships to all projects. President and founder Trish Dolman has been working in film and television for more than twenty years as an award-winning producer and a documentary director, joining forces with feature film veteran Christine Haebler as a producing partner in 2009. Known for excellence in production quality and fiscal management, Screen Siren has more than twenty productions to its credit and has produced for leading broadcasters around the world with completed titles premiering and winning awards at the major film festivals. Recent productions include the multi-award-wining feature film Indian Horse and the CSA award-wiining feature documentary Canada in a Day.