For most of the night it looked like the only B.C. content at the 2006 Genie Awards was going to be Terry David Mulligan, who hosted the presentation ceremony with actor-model Lisa Ray (Water). But Velcrow Ripper (and producers Tracey Friesen, Cari Green, and Harry Sutherland) tore through C.R.A.Z.Y. night in Canada, with ScaredSacred, winning the Genie for best documentary, one of the only categories where C.R.A.Z.Y. wasn't a contender.
It was Ripper's second Genie and he told the Georgia Straight it's special for two reasons. First, he said, "It's the highest honour in Canada." Second, "This one has its bum screwed on properly."
Ripper confessed that he dropped his first statue (for Bones of the Forest in 1996) and had it repaired by a plumber back home on Galiano Island. The plumber had never won a Genie, so he didn't know what it was supposed to look like. Says Ripper: "He put it on backwards, so the bum faces in the wrong direction."
Asked what magic powers he hopes his fresh, unbroken Genie will have, Ripper says his wish is that it'll make his next documentary easier to fund. "Getting a film off the ground is like teaching an elephant to fly. And I hope this will give the film wings."
B.C.'s Matthew Cervi also took home a Genie, for best live-action short with "Milo 55160".
Although the TV coverage of the 2006 Genie Awards was billed as "Live! At the Genies", the awards weren't broadcast live, which made for a relaxed high-speed ceremony where awards were handed out with more biz than show. TV coverage focused on the high-profile categories and interviewing the winners before they could make it to the oyster-and-martini bar at the posh post-show party.
One of B.C.'s leading ladies, Babz Chula (best-supporting-actress nominee for Seven Times Lucky) was run over by the C.R.A.Z.Y. train but was in high spirits after the awards. Chula, wearing what she called a "Chula original"-a leafy green kimono-said that if western talent wants to make more of an impact at the Genies and Geminis, more westerners have to join the Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television so they can vote.
Then Chula revealed she wasn't even planning to attend the ceremony until a friend called to urge her on, saying he wanted to make sure he wasn't the only British Columbian at the show. The friend? Terry David Mulligan.