Kelly Saxberg is a film producer, director and editor who has worked in the film industry for the past 25 years. She has traveled the world with film crews and also enjoys telling Canadian stories. Her dedication to making films that both educate and entertain has resulted in a number of award-winning productions. Kelly speaks and works in English, French and Spanish.
Most recently, she has written and directed "Big Finn Hall" a feature length docu-drama about the politics and culture of the Finnish Labour Temple. She is currently in post-production.
She directed Life is but a Dream - the only Canadian 2010 finalist with International Doc Challenge which received an honourable mention and best in Genre at Hot Docs 2010. Her film crew followed Charlie Wilkins and his 15 other crew members on their epic transatlantic rowing adventure filming Big Blue's departure from Morocco, the 53 day journey and arrival in Barbados in 2011.
Northern Grown is a documentary she co-directed on food sustainability in Thunder Bay.
In Security - looks at barbed wire - she shot, produced, edited the one hour documentary directed by Ron Harpelle. Filmed in Canada, South Africa, Palestinian Territories, Israel, South Africa, Mexico and the US.
In 2010, she completed: "Citoyens du Monde," a six-part series of one-hour documentaries about international development. Filmed in 15 countries, this series takes viewers into the world of research for development. This intimate look at the problems facing poor countries and the people who are trying to solve those problems, is a major contribution to development education. The series airs on TFO, Ontario's French language Educational television station.
There is also an English version.
“Seeking Bimaadiziiwin” was Kelly's debut as a fiction director. This 30 minute drama tackles depression and suicide among First Nations youth. The film was selected as the Best Live Action Short Film at the 32nd Annual American Indian Film Festival in 2007.
Letters from Karelia, is Kelly’s first feature length documentary about Canadians who moved to the Soviet Union in the 1930’s. It won two Blizzards - Best Documentary and Kelly won Best Directing at the 2006 Manitoba Motion Picture Industry Awards. It was also nominated for a Gemini for best documentary 2006. Letters from Karelia, was shot on super16 in Canada, Finland and Russia. It has been shown at numerous festivals and can be seen in Finland on YLE, and in Canada on History Television.
"Dorothea Mitchell: A Reel Pioneer" is about a local effort to finish a silent movie from the 1930’s and tell the story of Canada's first single woman homesteader, lumber mill operator and feature film scriptwriter. It airs on Bravo.
In 2005, Kelly directed a 14 part video series in aid of young women with eating disorders called “Turning Points ”in collaboration with Dr. Ron Davis of Lakehead University. The fifteen minute episode is distributed to high schools and clinics throughout Ontario.
"Banana Split," a documentary about the most popular fruit in Canada, that Kelly co-directed and edited. It won the first annual Deborah Fletcher Award of Excellence in Filmmaking on International Development and Best Documentary - Latin American Environmental Media Film Festival (2005).
In 2006, she also directed the one hour French and English versioned documentary: "Voyageurs Legacy: Our Story / Le printemps des voyageurs: La Genèse" for Les Productions Rivard and TFO.
Kelly Saxberg has a continued presence in the Manitoba film industry with over ten years of collaboration and work with Les Productions Rivard, the National film Board of Canada Prairie Region and formerly with Credo Entertainment.
"Rosies of the North," (1999), a one-hour National Film Board production that tells the story of North America’s first woman aeronautical engineer and the women who build Hurricane and Hell diver airplanes during World War Two. "Rosies of the North" has been broadcast on on at least 8 channels in North America and now streams on NFB.ca
Kelly also directed, wrote, shot and edited the ninth episode of "Pioneer Quest, 'Survivors of the Real West'" a one-hour documentary for the Life Channel about two couples who return to the 21st century after having lived for a year as "pioneers" in the wilds of Manitoba.
As an editor, Kelly’s credits range from work on award winning dramas like the National Film Board’s: "For Angela" to the highly acclaimed: "Pioneer Quest: Life in the Real West" a series which set Canadian records for the number of viewers who tuned in, and has been sold into syndication around the world. Kelly has experience on a wide variety of documentary films and she has done the camera work on many of her own films and works in Spanish, French and English. She edited the French and English versions of: " L'appel du large" and the two hour docu-drama: “Le printemps des voyageurs” shot on High Definition for TFO.
She also edited “The Fatal Flower” a silent film shot originally in 1930, and finished by members of the film and video co-op “Flash Frame” of which she is a founding member and 2004-2005 chair. Kelly has conducted numerous workshops on funding for film, camera technique, editing, and the use of programs like Avid and Final Cut Pro. She has been instrumental in the organization of independent film screenings in Thunder Bay. She is a co-ordinator and founder of the Bay Street Film Festival which has just completed its 6th year. She also volunteers as a consultant and crew member for emerging filmmakers in Thunder Bay. Most notably, she worked in several capacities on Piotr Skowronski’s dramas "Undertow", “On the Rails in Red” .