February 12 - 17, 2025

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Breaking into the entertainment industry is an arduous journey, one that often feels like scaling an insurmountable mountain. Black and Racialized Artists have long grappled with doors that, more often than not, have been unjustly bolted shut. Their incredible talents and potential have faced systemic biases and exclusion.

In this informative one-on-one conversation, we gain unique insights into the world of Bell Media, a trailblazing entity in the entertainment industry. Alexis McLaren, a key company representative, will generously share their journey of creation, the company's unwavering creative focus, and what they actively seek in terms of projects. Most importantly, she will address how they have been instrumental in opening doors for Black and Racialized Artists both in front and behind the cameras, how she feels about the importance of representation in the industry and how Black and Racialized Artists can find opportunities in the company.


Richard Young, Screenwriter & Actor

Richard Young is a Canadian Screen Award-nominated screenwriter and actor. Writing credits include “Overlord and the Underwoods” (CBC/Nickelodeon), "Dino Ranch" (CBC/Disney+), "16 Hudson" (TVO), "Sudden Master" (OMNI) and "Maternal" (CBC Reflections). His sci-fi thriller “Exalt” was optioned by Frantic Films, and his writing accolades include Coverfly RED List, ScreenCraft Sci-Fi and Fantasy Screenwriting Competition Finalist/Honorable Mention, JFL ComedyPRO Pitch Finalist and Austin Film Festival Screenplay Semifinalist.

Richard's screen acting credits include "Transplant" (NBC), "Jett" (Cinemax), and "Kim's Convenience" (CBC). He serves as an AFBS Governor and served as the ACTRA Toronto Treasurer, focusing on diversity and inclusion. Before disappointing his immigrant parents by pursuing the arts, Richard earned a BSc. (Honours) in Psychology (Queen's University) and an MBA (York University: Schulich).


Alexis McLaren, Production Executive, Original Programming, Scripted & Unscripted

As a Production Executive, Alexis McLaren works with industry writers and partners on the production of new projects for Bell Media’s Original Programming Slate. Alexis’ production portfolio covers both scripted and unscripted titles for national channels, including, Crave, CTV and CTV specialty channels. Announced titles include The Traitors Canada, Pets & Pickers, Office Movers and Bria Mack Gets A Life.

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