If the federal government is wondering if there's a need to support Canadian content in the entertainment field, they have their answer.
Results released this week from a survey commissioned by the Department of Canadian Heritage show that Canadians feel homegrown cultural content is important. They also believe Canadian films don't attract the attention they deserve.
According to the research, 92 per cent of those surveyed agreed it was important to have access to Canadian books and music, and 90 per cent felt the same about films and magazines. About 80 per cent of respondents said Canadian books and magazines of interest were easily accessible, and 69 per cent had no difficulty finding Canadian music online.
The survey also indicated that 77 per cent had an interest in watching Canadian films, but only 51 per cent said they could easily find Canadian films to watch. Seventy-three per cent suggested there should be more Canadian films aired on television and 65 per cent want to see more homegrown movies in theatres. In the area of magazines, about 70 per cent of Canadians said they read print versions, and about half of those said all or most of the magazines they read are Canadian.
The survey results all point to the fact that Canadians want homegrown content in films, books, music and magazines. That should be encouraging news for filmmakers, authors, publishers, musicians and others involved in this country's entertainment and cultural industries. It should also be a sign to the federal government that it is worthwhile to provide support to those areas in order to encourage the development of Canadian content.
Such support is needed in order to ensure Canadian creativity in film, music and literature can flourish in spite of competition from the U.S., where sheer volumes can overwhelm Canadian content. Canadian filmmakers, musicians and writers can hold their own with their U.S. counterparts in terms of quality, but getting their works to market sometimes requires a helping hand. Canadian Content Development funding plays an important role in ensuring Canadians can continue to enjoy homegrown films, books and music.
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