A B.C. film company has been retained for the purpose of making a commemorative documentary about Burns Lake as part of celebrating the town’s 100th birthday at the cost of approximately $200,000. This photo is the one from the centennial calendar, if you haven’t gotten your copy yet stop by the Burns Lake Visitor’s Centre for a copy. (Centennial committee and LD Museum photo/Lakes District News)

A B.C. film company has been retained for the purpose of making a commemorative documentary about Burns Lake as part of celebrating the town’s 100th birthday at the cost of approximately $200,000. This photo is the one from the centennial calendar, if you haven’t gotten your copy yet stop by the Burns Lake Visitor’s Centre for a copy. (Centennial committee and LD Museum photo/Lakes District News)

A commemorative film about Burns Lake; cost approximately $200,000

Documentary dream needs cash reality

“Show me the money” is a famous line from a movie.

“Find us the money” is what mayor and council told village staff in order to make a movie, with costs at approximatley $200,000.

Northern BC film company 6ixSigma Productions has been retained for the purpose of making a commemorative documentary about Burns Lake as part of celebrating the town’s 100th birthday.

Filmmaking is not cheap. Councillors did not approve spending taxpayers’ money to foot the whole bill, but they did empower economic development officer Dolores Funk to look for sponsors and granting agencies to join the production.

“I’m going to be honest, it’s going to be an uphill battle,” because there are few grants earmarked for projects such as this, Funk said, “but I think it is something a lot of community stakeholders will be interested to see go forward.”

Funk’s initial discussions gleaned that there were parties in the area, public and private alike, that indicated an interest in contributing funding.

“There is potential,” she said. “I think the perks are, we will have a tangible piece of history, that we can tell a story about now as well as the last 100 years, it’s a piece that we can use to promote the region. That’s an exciting prospect for me, for economic development; I’ll be able to use that as a tool.”

“The purpose of the centennial documentary is two-fold,” said Burns Lake’s chief administrative officer Sheryl Worthing. “First and foremost, it is an appropriate time to take a comprehensive look at our last hundred years – the good, the bad and the in-between – and bring together all the histories of those who call the Lakes District home. As a film, this piece will be accessible to most and is something tangible that can be passed through the generations. A high-quality production would lend itself well to highlight Burns Lake as an authentic and beautiful place to live and could be utilized for resident and investment attraction purposes. Portions of the film could also be used for tourism marketing.”

The actual date of the centennial is Dec. 6, 2023, which Worthing said was “a difficult time to have a celebratory event due to winter travel and conflicts with the holidays.”

With the economic pressures of the post-COVID year, the unusual difficulties of the travel sector, and scheduling pressures at the best of times, it was felt that a documentary film was a wise monument for such unpredictable times. It would be a legacy piece that wouldn’t get ruined due to weather or cancellation.

“The plan would be to release the documentary on the actual centennial to a wide audience via the local theatre and online viewing options,” Worthing explained.

Mayor Henry Wiebe had a list of possible funding contributors off the top of his head.

When it came to the vote, councillor Charlie Rensby expressed hope that Funk would be tasked with pursuing the project.

“You have my very full support,” he said. “I think it’s very important for our town to have a bit of a video time capsule looking at the past 100 years. One hundred per cent. You go.”

Funk expressed that time was of the essence for securing the funding, because a quality documentary would have to get underway in a matter of weeks, in order to make the necessary production deadlines.

“Basically, creative development should start next month,” she said. “That means I have three weeks to find the money.”

The motion was carried without opposition.

Those who contribute funding can get listed in the film’s permanent credits and also recognition in the social media campaign and other public discourse platforms. It could be advertising for your business, a legacy citation to memorialize someone, a simple contribution to a community projected intended to be used considerably and stand as a visual

To speed the process and provide certainty for the project, anyone who wants to support the project with funding is asked to contact Funk as soon as possible.

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