nathalie bissonnette

screenwriter, director, executive producer

 

IN BRIEF

From administration to advertising by way of the theatre scene, Nathalie Bissonnette’s career path is reflective of her rich and eclectic personality. In 2004, she was appointed executive producer for OUTSIDERS Films, where her talents have been put to great use on many film and TV projects that she is both passionate about and entirely dedicated to.

IN DETAIL

With a background in business administration, Nathalie Bissonnette worked in the advertising industry from 1987 to 1992, most notably as a project manager at agencies such as Young & Rubicam and Cossette. Her path then veered towards theatre, with various endeavours taking her to the U.S. and Europe. After collaborating on several projects, she directed a New York stage production of A Streetcar Named Desire.

 

In 2001, Nathalie Bissonnette returned to her native Quebec, more specifically in Montreal, to undertake the redesign of the J. Armand Bombardier Museum website. She served both as producer and artistic director on this ambitious project. In 2004, that rewarding experience brought about her first documentary project, Bombardier: sur les sentiers de ma famille, which she directed, co-wrote and co-produced with her associate Ginette Petit. This intimate and widely praised documentary related the lives and careers of two exceptional builders: her grandfather, Joseph-Armand Bombardier, and the entrepreneur Laurent Beaudoin. The film screened at Radio-Canada’s Grands Reportages and aired on RDI. The project prompted both women to become partners and work together on many innovative projects for museums and companies in the aviation sector. And thus began a beautiful collaboration between Nathalie Bissonnette and Ginette Petit.

 

They also created a multidisciplinary experience for Bombardier Aerospace, bringing to light the history of aviation with an emphasis on Bombardier’s evolution in Quebec before and after its dramatic take-off on the international market. That initiative was rolled out around the world in order to raise awareness and increase the motivation of people employed at the factories of multinational manufacturer Bombardier.

 

They were also invited to work with Moment Factory on the scripting for the multimedia room at the Museum of Ingenuity J. Armand Bombardier, which pieces together the history of Bombardier as an immersive journey.

 

Her boldness and sensitivity allowed Bissonnette to become the Bombardier family’s head archivist. A leading expert in honouring those who have shaped its history, she was able to showcase key individuals such as André Bombardier, Jean-Louis Fontaine and Laurent Beaudouin.

 

In 2012, the two partners and friends produced Le vieil âge et le rire by famed director Fernand Dansereau. A heartfelt documentary that explores the experience of aging, it won the Audience Award at the Rendez-vous du Cinéma Québécois and enjoyed a six-week theatrical run at Cinéma Beaubien, after which it also took home the Coup de Cœur prize from the APCQ (Association des Propriétaires de Cinémas du Québec) in January 2013.

 

Parallel to this success, Nathalie Bissonnette and Ginette Petit acquired the rights to four works: Ça sent la coupe, a novel by Matthieu Simard, adapted for the screen by the author himself and directed by Patrice Sauvé; And The Birds Rained Down, a novel by Jocelyne Saucier, written and directed by Louise Archambault. An animated production was also added to their growing list of passion projects: Space Cadet, based on the illustrated musical tale by Kid Koala (Eric San), directed by the artist with a screenplay by Mylène Chollet. More recently, both women acquired the Canadian broadcasting rights to Dernières nouvelles du Cosmos, a fascinating documentary that immerses us in the sharp mind of a young woman with nonverbal autism.

 

But that’s not all! At the end of 2015, two theatrically released documentaries were met with resounding success. The first was Le pays qui dit NON, directed by veteran documentarian Hélène Pichette. The second, Hôtel La Louisiane, directed in Paris by Michel La Veaux and screened at many cinemas both at home and in Europe, was awarded the Communications and Society prize at the 38th edition of the Festival du Cinéma International en Abitibi Témiscamingue.

 

On February 24, 2017, Ça sent la coupe (distributed by Les Films Séville) was released theatrically across Quebec and chosen as the opening film for the Rendez-vous du Cinéma Québécois. In July 2018, principal photography began on And The Birds Rained Down, a feature film shot entirely in rural areas. Its initial theatrical release is set for September 13, 2019.

 

Nathalie Bissonnette is also known for her generous commitment to FIFA, where she served as board member for many years. Of late, she has served as board member on the J. Armand Bombardier Foundation and has also completed the director development program offered at the University of Toronto’s Rothman School of Management and the McGill Executive Institute in order to live up to the administrator position she was entrusted with.

 

Now responsible for business development at OUTSIDERS Films, she remains passionate and keenly interested in emerging film industries and new technologies. She also keeps her eyes open for opportunities to develop partnerships with less coveted markets in the cultural sector.

 

Lastly, Nathalie Bissonnette is currently writing and directing her next documentary feature, Il était une fois… moi - toi - nous. This ambitious project will try to answer the question: If we had found one of the keys to Socrates’ “know thyself”, wouldn’t we be able to live in a happier world?

 

nathalie@outsidersfilms.com

THE TEAM

 

ginette petit

producer

IN BRIEF

Drawing on over twenty years of experience in film production, Ginette Petit has worked on about five hundred short films and many features, among them And the Birds Rained Down by Louise Archambault (2019), Ça sent la coupe by Patrice Sauvé (2017), The Ring by Anaïs Barbeau-Lavalette (2007), The Collector by Jean Beaudin (2001) and Kabloonak by Claude Massot (1994), which were lauded by critics. Known for her attention to detail, rigor and infectious enthusiasm, Ginette Petit sets herself apart thanks to her generosity toward creators, her thorough understanding of the creative process and her sharp artistic eye, which she notably honed in her early years as a set designer and window dresser.

IN DETAIL

It would be nearly impossible to dissociate Ginette Petit’s professional journey from her deep-rooted passion for emerging and up-and-coming talents. She spent nine years as director of L’inis’ cinema program, where she also served as a guest producer and instructor, in addition to taking part in restructuring the program in 2002. Through her involvement with L’inis, she produced several hundreds of short films, many of which reaped prizes worldwide, and launched the careers of young creators such as Frédéric Ouellet, Yan Lanouette-Turgeon and Chloé Robichaud. An honorary member of L’inis, she still teaches to fledgling producers enrolled in its cinema program.

 

From 1992 to 2012, Ginette Petit sat on numerous film festival juries, in addition to serving as an external analyst for SODEC. The in-depth assessment of one hundred projects allowed her to acquire considerable experience in the development of cutting-edge works. Never afraid to take the road less traveled, she put her stamp on many bold multidisciplinary projects as scriptwriter and artistic producer.

 

In 2004, she teamed up with Nathalie Bissonnette, who became her partner and director of business development at her production company, OUTSIDERS Films. Together, they co-wrote and co-produced a first documentary entitled Bombardier: sur les sentiers de ma famille, with Bissonnette also taking on directorial duties. On the basis of this fruitful experience, the women then developed many innovative projects for museums and companies in the aviation sector, including the portrait of eight renowned test pilots, which accompanied visitors as they made their way through the Canada Aviation and Space Museum.

 

They also created a multidisciplinary experience for Bombardier Aerospace, bringing to light the history of aviation with an emphasis on Bombardier’s evolution in Quebec before and after its dramatic take-off on the international market. That initiative was rolled out around the world in order to raise awareness and increase the motivation of people employed at the factories of multinational manufacturer Bombardier.

 

They were also invited to work with Moment Factory on the scripting for the multimedia room at the Museum of Ingenuity J. Armand Bombardier, which packages the history of Bombardier as an immersive journey.

 

Upon stepping down as director of L’inis in 2012, Ginette Petit fully dedicated herself to OUTSIDERS Films. Without wasting a second, she released a heartfelt documentary that same year: Le vieil âge et le rire, directed by the accomplished filmmaker Fernand Dansereau. Demonstrating his considerable talents, the artist portrays the experience of aging with much humour and authenticity. The film was a resounding hit, taking home both the Audience Award at the Rendez-vous du Cinéma Québécois and the Coup de Cœur prize from the APCQ  (Association des Propriétaires de Cinémas du Québec), in addition to its impressive six-week run at Cinéma Beaubien.

 

Always on the hunt for singular and profoundly human projects, Ginette Petit acquired the rights to an assortment of best-selling works: Ça sent la coupe, a novel by Matthieu Simard, adapted for the screen by the author himself and directed by Patrice Sauvé; And The Birds Rained Down, a novel by Jocelyne Saucier, written and directed by Louise Archambault; Space Cadet, an illustrated musical tale by Kid Koala (Eric San), directed by the artist with a screenplay by Mylène Chollet. More recently, she acquired the Canadian broadcasting rights for Dernières nouvelles du cosmos, a documentary of rare poetry that immerses us in the fascinating mind of a young woman with nonverbal autism.

 

At the end of 2015, two of her theatrically released documentaries were met with resounding success. The first, Le pays qui dit NON, is a poignant portrait of Canada’s declining foreign policy during Stephen Harper’s reign, directed by veteran documentarian Hélène Pichette. The second, Hôtel La Louisiane, directed in Paris by Michel La Veaux, and screened in many cinemas both at home and in Europe, was awarded the Communications and Society prize at the 38th edition of the Festival du Cinéma International en Abitibi Témiscamingue.

On February 24, 2017, Ça sent la coupe (distributed by Les Films Séville) was released theatrically across Quebec and chosen as the opening film for the Rendez-vous du Cinéma Québécois. The film stars Louis-José Houde, Maxime Mailloux, Julianne Côté, Émilie Bibeau, Louis-Philippe Dandenault and Patrick Drolet.

 

Serving as a board member for the AQPM (Association Québécoise de la Production Médiatique) as well as Le Grand Costumier, Ginette Petit continues to work at various levels of the industry. Shortly prior to the filming of the feature film And The Birds Rained Down, shot exclusively in rural areas in the summer of 2018, Petit recruited two young producers who’d just finished their training in the cinema program at L’inis. As trainee producers, both have since remained at OUTSIDERS Films. Always eager to encourage young talents, she supported them in the creation of their production company Cosmos Films, which became a subsidiary of OUTSIDERS Films.

 

She is currently at work developing various projects, as bold, ambitious and authentic as ever, while prepping for the anticipated release of her latest feature film, And The Birds Rained Down, on September 13, 2019. The film stars Andrée Lachapelle, Gilbert Sicotte, Rémy Girard, Eve Landry, Éric Robidoux, Kenneth Welsh and Louise Portal.

 

ginette@outsidersfilms.com

 ABOUT US  

"Better to learn quickly how to shed the superfluous to rise higher."

- ginette petit and nathalie bissonnette

MISSION

Since its founding, production company OUTSIDERS Films has made it its mission to carry creative talent all the way to the finish line. To seek it out where one would least expect it. To bring it to life and sometimes revive it. Above all, to see it blossom with tremendous respect. At OUTSIDERS, the person is always a central priority. Consideration for others, appreciation for teamwork, encounters that bring about a sense of fulfillment, boldness and generosity: these are the founding values reflected in the company’s projects. No matter the topic, genre or message conveyed, its productions speak of hope and humanism.

OUR PATH

Throughout the years and over the course of many encounters, discussions, experiences and their ensuing challenges, the editorial line of OUTSIDERS Films has been refined, coming into clearer focus. We invest in projects intended for a broad audience, where human beings feature prominently. Our aim: to provide food for thought, to spark discussion, to grow and inspire others to do so as well. Whether it is fiction, documentary or animation, the choice of subject matter must necessarily reflect these intentions.

 

With that in mind, OUTSIDERS also opts to adapt best-selling works. First off, Ça sent la coupe, a popular novel by Matthieu Simard, known for his humorous writing style full of humanity. This feature film, written by the author himself, was directed by Patrice Sauvé (Le Monstre; Cheech; Grande Ourse - La clé des possibles). Presented as the opening film for the 2017 Rendez-vous du Cinéma Québécois, before its theatrical release, it enjoyed a very successful run. The Simard-Sauvé duo carried on working with OUTSIDERS Films immediately after, embarking on the development of another feature film. 

 

Now, it is another high-profile novel’s turn to get the big screen treatment: And The Birds Rained Down by Jocelyne Saucier, directed by Louise Archambault (Familia; Gabrielle), who also wrote the screenplay. Principal photography for the film took place in the summer of 2018, and the initial theatrical run is slated for September 13, 2019.

 

OUTSIDERS Films is also handling the adaptation of an acclaimed illustrated musical tale by artist Kid Koala (Eric San). The Space Cadet project, a universal story brimming with humanity, will be directed by the artist, while the highly skilled Mylène Chollet will oversee scriptwriting duties.

 

Given that humans are always in the limelight at OUTSIDERS, documentary projects are intrinsic to the fulfillment of its vision. That is why it is important to us that we handle distribution ourselves. In 2016, OUTSIDERS Films acquired the Canadian distribution rights to Dernières nouvelles du Cosmos, a documentary of rare poetry that immerses us in the fascinating mind of a young woman with nonverbal autism. The film was nominated at the 2017 Césars and won the Grand Prize at FIFA (International Festival of Films on Art) in 2018.

 

2015 saw the release of Hôtel la Louisiane, a documentary that takes place at the heart of this mythical Parisian institution, directed in Paris by Michel La Veaux. Upon its release in Europe and Quebec, the film enjoyed great critical and commercial success, in addition to being awarded the Communications and Society prize at the 38th edition of the Festival du Cinéma International en Abitibi Témiscamingue.

That same year, another documentary hit the big screen: Le pays qui dit NON, a poignant portrait of Canada’s declining foreign policy during Stephen Harper’s reign, directed by veteran documentarian Hélène Pichette. 

 

In 2012, Le vieil âge et le rire by famed director Fernand Dansereau found its way into theatres. A heartfelt documentary that explores the experience of aging, it won the Audience Award at the Rendez-vous du Cinéma Québécois and enjoyed a six-week theatrical run at Cinéma Beaubien, after which it also took home the Coup de Cœur prize from the APCQ (Association des Propriétaires de Cinémas du Québec) in January 2013.

 

OUTSIDERS Films widely lauded debut documentary, Bombardier: sur les sentiers de ma famille (co-written by Ginette Petit and Nathalie Bissonnette, and directed by the latter) is an intimate documentary relating the lives and careers of two exceptional builders: inventor Joseph-Armand Bombardier and entrepreneur Laurent Beaudoin. The film was screened at Radio-Canada’s Grands Reportages and aired on RDI. The project then prompted both partners to work together on many innovative projects for museums and companies in the aviation sector.

 

Lastly, at the dawn of summer 2018, Ginette Petit recruited two emerging producers and recent graduates of the cinema program at L’inis as trainee producers on the feature shoot for And The Birds Rained Down, filmed exclusively in rural areas. Rocío Barba Fuentes and Giacomo Nudi were then permanently welcomed into the OUTSIDERS family. Supported by Ginette Petit, their mentor producer, they created their production company Cosmos Films, which became a subsidiary of OUTSIDERS Films.

 

Since its early days, the company continues to broaden its horizons and grow while keeping pace with changing times, never betraying its core values. OUTSIDERS brings together fiction and documentary projects alike for the big screen and new platforms. Projects that fire on all creative and emotional cylinders, pulled off with a deep-rooted sense of mutual respect. Projects that carry out OUTSIDERS Films initial impetus and mission: TELLING STORIES THAT MATTER.

rocío b. fuentes

producer

rocio@outsidersfilms.com

giacomo nudi

producer

giacomo@outsidersfilms.com