Cineworks Independent Filmmakers Society is a non-profit Artist-Run Centre, supporting independent filmmakers, media artists and arts audiences through facilities and initiatives encompassing production, exhibition, consultation, outreach and advocacy.
Through programs that foster experimentation with motion-picture arts, in dialogue with their historic, current and future cultural contexts, we engage our membership and wider communities in the investigative, expressive and transformative powers of the moving image.
In addition to our main offices, production studio, edit suites and equipment rental store off Howe Street in Vancouver's Downtown core, Cineworks runs an analogue film lab and studio in the city's Downtown East Side. Known as the Annex, this facility features an extensively equipped darkroom and open studio with equipment for machine and hand processing photochemical film, as well as for contact printing, optical printing, stop-frame animation and editing Super 8, 16mm and 35mm film.
Cineworks was incorporated as a non-profit society in 1980, and in 1983 was recognized as a charitable organization by Revenue Canada. We gratefully acknowledge and pay respect to the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh First Nations on whose unceded traditional territories our organization and our work is based. We also gratefully acknowledge the support of Canada Council for the Arts, British Columbia Arts Council, The Province of British Columbia and the City of Vancouver.
Accessibility: Our Annex Analogue studio, darkroom and washroom are wheelchair accessible. Our Howe Street production and exhibition studio is wheelchair accessible, with wheelchair accessible washroom in the immediate neighbourhood – please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or 604 685 3841 with questions or concerns as to how we can meet your needs.
Established in 1980, in Vancouver, Cineworks is located on the unceded territories of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), and Sel̓íl̓witulh (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations. As a non-profit artist-run centre that supports independent filmmakers, media artists, and arts audiences through facilities and initiatives that assist in the production, distribution, and exhibition of independent, non-commercial analogue and digital films, the initiatives of Cineworks aim to maximize creative human employment potential in the relief of poverty and increasing the awareness of the investigative, expressive, and transformative powers of the moving image.
Cineworks is committed to upholding the values of inclusion, diversity, equity, and accessibility. We strongly encourage individuals from underrepresented groups and those that have faced systemic barriers at institutions, including cis, trans, two-spirit and non-binary, and BIPOC to engage throughout our organisation. We also value diverse lived experience and knowledge from which we hope to learn and draw upon within our workshops, screenings, staff crew and governance.
Cineworks nurtures and safeguards an inclusive, safe, positive, fun and respectful working environment to which all staff, members, and the public are entitled. All members of the Cineworks community, including the Board, staff crew and membership are expected to uphold and contribute to this respectful, kind and welcoming environment.
Board of Directors
Eric Chi Keung ChanDirector
Eric Chi Keung Chan has worked for over 20 years in journalism for newspapers, magazines and television. He is the former producer of the Shaw community channel show “Saltwater City TV.” He is currently the News Editor of Ming Pao Daily News. He is also the current producer of the daily video news broadcast “Ming Pao 530 News.” Born in Hong Kong, China, he became a citizen of Canada in 2000 and is fluent English, Mandarin and Cantonese.
Tenure with Organization: joined Cineworks in 2021
Filmmaker, Installation Artist, Educator,
Toni-Lynn Frederick is a filmmaker, writer, and installation artist from Vancouver, British Columbia. Her academic credits include degrees from Capilano U, UBC, and SFU, and she is currently on-leave from the final year of a practice-based PhD at the University of Reading, England, where her research examines the representation of Holocaust-related landscape and the use of witness re-enactment in Claude Lanzmann’s Shoah. She has taught both film production and history and is the founder of the Vancouver Free School. In addition to working on her own digital video and analogue film practice, Toni-Lynn works as the Video Testimony Project Coordinator for the Vancouver Holocaust Education Centre and is the recent recipient of a SSHRC Doctoral Award. Since joining the Cineworks Board in 2015, Toni-Lynn has largely focused on governance work, including board succession and bylaw compliance.
Tenure with Organization: joined Cineworks in 2015
Christoph RunnéVice President
Filmmaker, Installation Artist, Educator
Christoph Runné is a Vancouver-based experimental film, video, and installation artist. Through his work, he explores the unhidden yet seemingly invisible world around us. He creates visual tone poems with a humanitarian heartbeat whose minimalist and impressionistic methodology contradicts the complex human conditions with which Runné engages.
Tenure with Organization: joined Cineworks in 2016
Graphic Designer, Art Director
Illene Yu is a graphic designer and art director with over 17 years of experience in branding, packaging, layout, exhibit and web design, and project management. Her past clients include Greenpeace, the Rockefeller Family Fund, DeSmog Blog, Air Canada, Tropicana, and Bosa Development. She received the Bronze Quill Award of Excellence from the International Association of Business Communicators, BC Chapter; the Award of Merit from the Canadian Public Relations Society; and an award for Editorial Magazine Design in the 13th Applied Arts Design and Advertising Annual. Illene’s formal training includes UX Design at RED Academy, Marketing Communications at BCIT, Graphic Design & Illustration at Capilano University, and the Display + Design Program at Langara College.
Tenure with Organization: joined Cineworks in 2020
Provincial Practice Consultant
Melanie Aulin holds a Master’s of Social Work from Dalhousie University. She has worked in various positions within the Ministry for Children and Family Development for the last 22 years. She currently works as a Provincial Practice Consultant. She is also a lead for the Ministry’s Provincial domestic violence portfolio. She is involved in policy development and best practice approaches around child protection and domestic violence across the Province. In the past she has been involved in fundraising for the Red Cross, Surrey Women’s Centre, Frontier College and 60 Million Girls Foundation. Melanie is also a Certified Sommelier and regularly runs wine education sessions as well as private and corporate tasting events throughout the lower mainland.
Tenure with Organization: joined Cineworks in 2020
Chartered Professional Accountant, Certified General Accountant
Carole is a Vancouver based designated Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA, CGA). After graduating from Kwantlen Polytechnic University with a Bachelor of Accounting Degree, she has been active and working in the accounting field for over 10 years. She has full cycle accounting experience and knowledge in the non-profit, retail, restaurant and property management industries.
Tenure with Organization: joined Cineworks in 2017
Certified Management Accountant, Manager of Finance
Irwin Lee is a Certified Management Accountant and Manager of Finance for a non-profit organisation with an annual operating budget of 55 million dollars. He has a long-standing interested in non-profit and has been employed with a community organisation that provides housing, healthcare, and supports for extremely marginalised individuals since 2017. From 2015 to 2017, he was the assistant controller for EcoTrust, a charity dedicated to offering economic alternatives for individuals hoping to own their own homes. Prior to that work, he was involved in a variety of accounting or senior accounting roles for a decade. He served as treasurer and director for the Royal City Curling Club for a six-year period (2009-2014). On a personal level, he has seen the positive impact of the non-profit sector through the experience of his brother who lives with a disability and who has benefited from the supports provided by socially conscious organisations. As a designated accounting professional with 16 years of experience across multiple industries in the public, private, and not-for-profit sectors, Irwin hopes to share his skills, knowledge, and experience regarding financial statements, budgets, and financial reporting for non-profits.
Tenure with organisation: joined Cineworks in 2021.
Director, East Van Roasters Social Enterprise
Shelley Bolton has a 10-year background in and longstanding passion for independent filmmaking. Since 2001, her community work has built connections between local business groups and the low-income community in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside. She has operated various social enterprises including the Window Community Art Shop and East Van Roasters (EVR). As the Executive Director of the EVR, she oversees a program that provides women experiencing intersecting obstacles to their social tenure—such as addiction, mental illness and homelessness—with employment opportunities in fair-trade coffee roasting and bean to bar chocolate production. Before beginning with EVR, she worked as a Project Director at Esemkwu Aboriginal Healing and Wellness Society (located on the Squamish First Nation). Shelley is of Aboriginal (Kwantlen and Squamish: Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Úxwumixw), Hawaiian, and European ancestry. She is seeking election to the Cineworks Board of Directors and hopes that her work in independent film and experience in the non-profit sector will be an asset.
Tenure with Organization: joined Cineworks in 2021
Dan SmallExecutive Director
Dan Small joined Cineworks as the Executive Director in 2021. He brings over two decades of experience within the non-profit sector, in addition to a wide range of academic accomplishments.
Dan has had a long-standing interest in film, culture and narrative. He is particularly interested in community-based collaboration, independent filmmaking, strategies to remove barriers to filmmaking and the power of film to challenge otherwise accepted assumptions about the social world. Dan’s expansive career in not-for-profit began in the mental health field in the 1980's and has included extensive proposal writing and fundraising within both the government and private sector, as well as the set-up, implementation and management of "low barrier" healthcare and housing projects designed to reach marginalized populations facing intersecting inequalities which put them at risk for social and healthcare exclusion.
Dan has made it his professional goal to use sociocultural analysis to unpack professional, institutional and societal narratives in order to help create more person-centred approaches to the delivery of community services. As an honourary research associate at the University of BC, Dan has a PhD in medical anthropology (UBC), an MPhil in circumpolar studies (Cambridge), and undergraduate degrees in sociology and anthropology (SFU) as well as psychology (SFU).
Colin WilliscroftFacilities and Equipment Manager
Colin is the Facility and Equipment Manager at Cineworks and a graduate from Simon Fraser University where he got his BFA in Film Production. His work in film primarily focuses on experimental shorts that engage different formats with an emphasis on sound featured in works such as Dumpster Baby (2019) and O’hara Lane (2020). With this skill base he also has been involved in recording, designing and mixing films within the community such as Moth Music (2021) and A Family Act (2021). He hopes to continue creating and helping the community push the boundaries of film, not only as a way to tell stories but share experiences and develop the medium as language.
Luis AlvarezCineworks Program Coordinator
Luis Alvarez joined Cineworks as the Program Coordinator in 2021. He grew up in his twenties between his native Culiacan in the Northwest of Mexico and his adoptive home, Monterrey, in Northeast Mexico before moving to Canada in 2012, seeking new opportunities. As an international student, he completed and received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in film production at Simon Fraser University–his first degree was a Bachelor of Arts in communications at the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) back in Mexico.
He has always had a deep fascination for stories as far back as he can remember. Luis believes in the transformative power that stories hold in shaping our perception and ideas of the world, in better understanding who we are as individuals, and helping to bring communities together through their shared experiences.
An avid writer, Luis is currently finishing a year in The Writer’s Studio creative writing program at Simon Fraser University, where he is working on a short story collection set in a fantasy world titled, “Tales from the Whispering Woods”. He is fascinated in stories set in worlds alien from our own that explore the moral dilemmas and humanity of his characters while being inspired in part by his Mexican/Latino roots.
A lover of the still image since he was a teenager, Luis has engaged since 2017 in freelance photography, with an inclination towards portraiture, urban landscape and event photography, the latter which has allowed him to collaborate with organizations such as Indigenous Matriarchs 4 Media Lab, Out on Screen, Vancouver Pride, Performing Circle and others. He is quite partial to the contrasts of black & white photography.
Luis also has a passion for video games, both as entertainment, but also as a fully-fledged medium for interactive storytelling, and is always happy to receive new game recommendations.
He is honored and excited to be a part of the Cineworks crew to help create a safe and accessible space that promotes a dialogue about film and filmmaking where people from all walks of life can learn and share their experiences and stories.
You can reach out to him via email at email@example.com.
Cineworks gratefully acknowledges the ongoing financial support of our major funders:
Thank you to our community partners and sponsors:
Cineworks Independent Filmmakers Society is responsible for operating in compliance with the Motion Picture Act and Consumer Protection BC.
To attend a Cineworks Independent Filmmakers Society film screening (which may not have been classified by Consumer Protection BC), you must be a Cineworks Independent Filmmakers Society member.
Membership is by annual subscription and is limited to persons who are 18 years of age or over.
Only members are permitted to be present at the place where a non-classified film is being exhibited.
Cineworks Independent Filmmakers Society’s mandate is the encouragement and appreciation of motion pictures as a medium of art, information or education.