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Twenty-two awards to be handed out in Toronto

MONTREAL — The first Canadian Comedy Awards will be held April 6 in Toronto and broadcast April 10 on the Comedy Network and CTV in the Great White North.

Awards will be handed out to Canuck comics and writers in live comedy, television and film, and Canadians working in American films and TV series will be eligible for the prizes.

So Canadian funnymen like Mike Myers from “Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me,” Jim Carrey from “Man on the Moon” and Michael J. Fox from sitcom “Spin City” are all eligible for the awards. Details of the awards show will be officially unveiled at a press conference in Toronto today.

“For decades, comedy has been one of Canada’s greatest exports and natural resources, and it has never received the recognition it deserves,” said Toronto-based writer-producer Tim Progosh, who founded the Canadian Comedy Awards.

“A lot of pretty funny people have come from Canada, and I don’t think a lot of people internationally know these comics are Canadian. Here in Canada, we don’t acknowledge often enough that people like Ivan Reitman and Lorne Michael are Canadian.”

Twenty-two awards will be handed out in such categories as stand-up comic, director of a comedic film, live comedy troupe and performance in a television comedy. Members from actors union ACTRA, the Writers Guild, the Directors Guild, Yuk Yuk’s comedy clubs and other comedy clubs are involved in voting for the nominations, which will be announced in March.

The ceremony will be held at the Masonic Temple in Toronto. Writers for the show will include Progosh, Frank McAnulty (“500 Miles Off Broadway”), Tim Long (“Late Night With David Letterman,” “The Simpsons”) and Frank Peppiatt (“Hee Haw”).

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