hen Halifax filmmaker Stephanie Joline dropped her debut feature Night Blooms
earlier this year,
it felt like a grenade landing: The movie—set in nowheresville, Nova Scotia in 1998—traces the late teen years of Carly, a high schooler who makes bad choices and, eventually, hooks up with her best friend's dad. (It, uh, doesn't go well.)
“I had one version of the movie that I called the ‘risky draft.’ And then, I added a bunch of stuff—fully with the intention to never show it to anyone. I was like ‘I'm gonna just push the envelope as far as I can. And then, with my eyes only, pull back where I have to pull back.’ So I wrote a risky draft. And then I sat with it for a while and I was like: ‘I think this is good.’ That's the draft we end up making,” Joline told The Coast in April, when the movie had a week-long run at Cineplex Park Lane. It seems that her risk paid off: Last weekend, Joline took home the Screen Nova Scotia Award for Best Feature Film and Best Nova Scotia Director Award. Actor Alexandra McDonald, who plays a supporting role in Night Blooms
, also won an ACTRA Maritimes Award
for Outstanding Performances.
The family dramady Moonshine, meanwhile, won the Best Television Series Award. When it came to Best Documentary, Marie and Meaghan Wright's Freedom Swell—a doc about North Preston Surf—nabbed top honours. The award for Outstanding Achievement in Cinematography—a new category—went to Kevin Fraser, known for his work on local films like Bone Cage and Dawn, Her Dad & The Tractor.
The buzzed-about movie Wildhood was recognized with an ACTRA Maritimes Award for Outstanding
Performances going to