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CBC still in orbit at Gemini awards

Pubcaster wins big at industry kudofest

TORONTO — Despite enduring its share of challenges in recent years, pubcaster CBC remained a winner at the 21st annual Gemini Awards. The Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television on Wednesday wrapped up the third consecutive night of the industry awards portion of the kudos.

CBC’s “Songwriters’ Circle” took the nod for music/variety program or series, and its “Canada Russia ’72” drew kudos for picture editing, as did “The Rick Mercer Report.”

On Wednesday, the drama, variety and comedy award night, other winners included CTV’s “Hunt for Justice: The Louise Arbour Story” for TV movie; miniseries “Human Trafficking” for production design or art direction as well as costume design; and “Slings & Arrows” for writing in a dramatic series as well as directing (Peter Wellington) and featured thesp (Susan Coyne). Maury Chaykin and Linda Kash of “At the Hotel” took guest actor and actress nods.

The multinommed “Prairie Giant: The Tommy Douglas Story,” which was pulled by CBC after complaints from Douglas’ family about his portrayal, received the statuette for makeup.

The pubcaster dominated the first night of the awards covering news, sports and docs. CBC’s “The Fifth Estate” won for news information series, “The National” for newscast. Peter Mansbridge, veteran anchor of “The National,” drew the statuette for newscaster, his 11th Gemini Award.

“CBC News: The Hour” took talk series, and host George Stroumboulopoulos took a statuette for host Tuesday, when the statuettes for lifestyle, children’s and youth categories were doled out.

Sean Cullen of “What Were They Thinking?” on the Comedy Network also received a host statuette.

“The MuchMusic VJ Search” drew the nod for reality program. The Movie Network’s “Stuntdawgs” won as general/human interest series. Top animated program was “Bromwell High,” airing in Canada on Teletoon, and preschool program kudos went to “Gisele’s Big Backyard” on TVOntario.

The 21st annual Gemini gala, to be broadcast by Global, will be held Nov. 4 in Richmond, B.C.

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