Skip to content

Movie full of local connections nominated for three northern film awards

In total, seven nominees with links to the Sault are on the short list for Northern Ontario Music and Film Awards, which will be announced next month in Sudbury

A hit movie filmed in and around Sault Ste. Marie has been nominated for three Northern Ontario Music and Film Awards (NOMFA).

Cascade — currently streaming on Netflix — was directed by Sault native Egidio Coccimiglio and filmed at various locations throughout the city, as well as Garden River First Nation and Aubrey Falls, 85 kilometres north of Thessalon.

The thriller is nominated for outstanding feature film, outstanding director and outstanding performance by an actor (Sara Waisglass).

Four others with connections to the Sault were among the northern nominees announced yesterday.

In the outstanding engineer category, Dustin Goodall is nominated twice (Deconstructed by Handsome Sandwich and ALL IN by The Northwest) along with Patrick Dal Cin (Claire by Knkm).

Sonja Smits, who starred in the Sault-filmed Better Days, is up for outstanding performance.

The 2024 edition of NOMFA, celebrating works released in 2022 and 2023, takes place in Sudbury over three days, from June 27 to 29.

NOMFA is a conference and award ceremony highlighting the artistic excellence achieved by musicians, filmmakers and screen-based projects from northern Ontario. 

Nominees for NOMFA 2024 were selected by an independent jury comprised of Canadian music and film industry experts.

Winners for each category will be revealed during the NOMFA 2024 Award Ceremony at Place des Arts June 29. NOMFA also features networking sessions, professional development activities and artist showcases.

Cultural Industries Ontario North (CION), which puts on the event, has recognized more than 50 projects, performances, and practitioners from northern Ontario, vying for top spots across 13 award categories.

While NOMFA is supposed to take place every two years, this is the first time it’s been held since 2019, before the pandemic.

“The pandemic obviously changed everything, especially for musicians,” said Patrick O’Hearn, associate executive director of CION.

“Musicians weren't able to release because they couldn't do tours the same way they were able to prior to the pandemic. So it really made sense to make sure that the industry was back up and running.”

In terms of northern Ontario’s film and television industry, O’Hearn said some of the productions being filmed here are not only screening at northern film festivals, but at the Toronto International Film Festival and overseas festivals such as Cannes.

“It's a testament to the way our industry has really grown over the last 20-plus years,” he said. “We’re one of the leading production jurisdictions in Canada right now.”

O’Hearn said 2024 was a record-breaking year for NOMFA nominations. 

“Our songwriter category itself was over 60 submissions,” he said, adding that many musicians held off on releasing albums during the pandemic because they couldn’t tour.

He said it’s important to acknowledge the talent coming out of our own backyard, not just those who have already received national or international recognition, but those who are ready to take the next step in their careers.

It puts northern Ontario’s cultural sector “in a place where it can shine as it moves forward and where these practitioners can receive new funding, where they can sign new record deals and go on more ambitious tours,” he added.

Ticket information will soon be available through CION’s website.

And here are the nominees:

Music Awards

Outstanding Album

  • Alexithymia, Collin Clowes (Thunder Bay)
  • Here and Now, Aysanabee (Sandy Lake First Nation)
  • New Occasion, Nicholas Cangiano (North Bay)
  • Oblivion, Evan Redsky (Mississaugi First Nation)
  • Simply, The Ape-ettes (Greater Sudbury)

Meilleur Album Francophone

  • Anonyme, Mclean (Greater Sudbury)
  • Boréale, Mimi O’Bonsawin (Greater Sudbury)
  • Catalepsie, TIBO (North Bay)
  • Salut, Philippe, Philippe Mathieu (Greater Sudbury)
  • Tout est relatif, Dayv Poulin (Greater Sudbury)

Outstanding Album by an Indigenous Artist 

  • Boréale, Mimi O’Bonsawin (Greater Sudbury)
  • Here and Now, Aysanabee (Sandy Lake First Nation)
  • Oblivion, Evan Redsky (Mississaugi First Nation)
  • Prisms, G.R. Gritt (Greater Sudbury)

Outstanding Engineer

  • Dustin Goodall, Deconstructed by Handsome Sandwich (Sault Ste. Marie)
  • Dustin Goodall, ALL IN by The Northwest (Sault Ste. Marie)
  • Matt Wiewel, Surely Travel by Status/Non-Status (Greater Sudbury)
  • Matt Wiewel, Silver Hands / Diamond Teeth by Bad Actors (Greater Sudbury)
  • Patrick Dal Cin, Claire by Knkm (Sault Ste. Marie)

Outstanding Songwriter

  • Nominees for the Outstanding Songwriter category to be announced in the coming days.

Outstanding Music Video by a Northern Ontario Musical Act

  • Hearing Protection, The Ape-ettes (Greater Sudbury), directed by Jeff Houle and Curtis Carriere
  • Here and Now, Aysanabee (Sandy Lake First Nation), directed by Alex Smith
  • Hommage/Picaroon, Mclean (Greater Sudbury, directed by Shawn Kosmerly
  • The Same Way, Rose-Erin Stokes (North Bay), directed by Andrew Sowka
  • I Always Get What I Want, Strange Attractor (Greater Sudbury), directed by Curtis Carriere

Film Awards

Outstanding Feature Film

  • Adaptation, directed by Jake Thomas (Greater Sudbury)
  • Blooms: a Documentary about Cobalt, Ontario, directed by Jordan Vandenberg (filmed in Cobalt)
  • Café Daughter, directed by Shelley Niro (filmed in Greater Sudbury)
  • Cascade, directed by Egidio Coccimiglio (filmed in Sault Ste. Marie) 
  • Fitting In, directed by Molly McGlynn (filmed in Greater Sudbury)
  • La switch, directed by Michel Kandinsky (filmed in Greater Sudbury)
  • My Animal, directed by Jacquline Castel (filmed in Timmins)

Outstanding Short / Mid-Length Film

  • Braided Together, directed by Victoria Anderson-Gardner and Kyle Schmalenberg (filmed in Thunder Bay)
  • Journey to Our Homeland, directed by Adrien Harpelle (filmed in Nibinamik First Nation)
  • Lingering Pieces, directed by Jacqueline Lamb (filmed in Greater Sudbury)
  • Red Iron Road: No. 8 Reporting, directed by Matthew Lyon and Ajosha Klimov (animated in North Bay)
  • Through Brown Glass, directed by Keenan Grom (filmed in Moosonee)

Outstanding Television or VOD Series

  • Essex County (filmed in North Bay)
  • Shoresy Season 1 (filmed in Greater Sudbury)
  • SkyMed Season 2 (filmed in North Bay)
  • The Lake Season 1 and Season 2 (filmed in North Bay)
  • Thunder Bay (filmed in Thunder Bay)

Outstanding Director

  • Darlene Naponse, Stellar (Atikameksheng Anishnawbek First Nation)
  • David Lickley, Jane Goodall: Reasons for Hope (Greater Sudbury)
  • Egidio Coccimiglio, Cascade (Sault Ste. Marie)
  • Jake Thomas, Adaptation (Greater Sudbury)
  • Ryan McMahon and Leslie Lucas, Thunder Bay (Thunder Bay)

Outstanding Short / Mid-Length Director 

  • Nominees for the Outstanding Short / Mid-Length Director category to be announced in the coming days.

Outstanding Screenwriter

  • Austin Lindsay, Walter’s Room (North Bay)
  • David Lickley, Jane Goodall: Reasons for Hope (Greater Sudbury)
  • Keenan Grom, Through Brown Glass (Moose Cree First Nation)
  • Kelly Saxberg, The Sniper (Thunder Bay)
  • Victoria Anderson-Gardner and Kyle Schmalenberg, Braided Together (Migisi Sahgaigan First Nation)

Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Northern Ontario Production

  • François Arnaud, La Switch (filmed in Greater Sudbury)
  • Maddie Ziegler, Fitting In (filmed in Greater Sudbury)
  • Oyin Oladejo, Orah (filmed in Greater Sudbury)
  • Sara Waisglass, Cascade (filmed in Sault Ste. Marie)
  • Sonja Smits, Better Days (filmed in Sault Ste. Marie)
  • Stephen McHattie, My Animal (filmed in Timmins)

Heidi Ulrichsen is’s assistant editor. She also covers education and the arts scene.

What's next?

If you would like to apply to become a Verified reader Verified Commenter, please fill out this form.