BILLIE MINTZ
Producer, Writer, Director

Billie's professional film making career began at the age of 21, when he met and started managing Raul, the "Superdancer of the world." Raul was a 69 year old Inca Native from Peru who danced on the streets of Toronto giving free shows to the city's inhabitants. Intrigued by this man and how those around him perceived and treated him Billie began to study the diminishing role of the fool in our society, and how an individual is treated for their differences. In 1996 after writing the play "Dancing With the Fool" about his experiences and relationship with Raul, it was produced at the Tarragon Theatre Extra Space with Raul playing himself. The success of the play lead to a short documentary about Raul "The Superdancer of the World" (3min. 16mm), and then a short film "The Invisibility Complex" (3min. 35mm). Further exploring his theme about the history of fools and their psychological significance in our society, Billie's thesis as a filmmaker began to take shape when he started asking the question "what's funny and why." It is this very question that lead Billie to learn more about the world of irrational emotion that "the clown" derives from, inspiring his next film "The Shadow and the Clown" (12min. 35mm). With this film Billie created a possible emotional and psychological scenario that illustrates where humor comes from, while staying true to his clowning theme and style. "The Shadow and the Clown" was recipient of the prestigious Canada Council Grant and has since then been licensed by the Bravo Channel (BravoFACT) and the Canadian Broadcasting Company. It was also invited to make its world premier at the Vancouver International Film Festival in 2003. Billie has currently finished his final installment of his thesis, "The Fool" a 28 minute film starring Cliff Saunders, Ron Gabriel and narrated and executive produced by Hollywood screen legend Danny Aiello. The Fool was shot on 35mm about an imaginary friend, a clown who is looking for someone to believe in him. The film made its world premiere at the Danville International Children's Festival and is currently being developed into a feature film by Athelas Productions Inc. Being a member of the Canadian Actor's Union (ACTRA), the Directors Guild of Canada (DGC), and the Canadian Film and Television Producers Association (CFTPA), Billie has been fortunate enough to draw upon the skills of some of Canada's veteran crew and craftspeople to his films. Billie has also played an important role in the implementation of over 12 overseas animation studios in India, brokering relationships between studios in an international marketplace.