Why she’s a 2019 Top 40 Under 40: She champions diverse voices in Alberta’s film and television industry.
While some mourn the “golden era” of film and television, Janet Hamley thinks we’re in an even more exciting time. As the co-executive producer of Prairie Dog Film and Television, Hamley embraces all of the opportunities available with streaming services like Netflix, where the production company’s show, Blackstone, found a keen audience who binged all five seasons when the show was still available on Netflix earlier this year.
“I’m thankful for the opportunity to be in my career at this time; people have a lot more options for producing and consuming content, and I think [television] is more accessible,” she says.
Hamley has the coveted blend of creativity and business savvy, and initially joined the Albertan production company Prairie Dog in 2013 as head of finance thanks to her background in accounting. Now, she uses her well-rounded experience to mentor others in the entertainment industry about creating financially sustainable artistic endeavours. As a director on the board of Alberta Media Production Industries Association (AMPIA), she advocates for programs and policies to support other producers.
And as part of an Albertan team telling Alberta stories, Hamley is proud that Prairie Dog’s latest project, a crime drama called Tribal, features a 100 per cent Albertan company and crew and tackles issues of racism, sexism and corruption from a First Nations perspective.
“Producing is like problem-solving, and every day is different. I hope to continue to work on projects that give a voice and opportunity to First Nations communities. I want to continue to work on projects that tell important stories and can make a difference.”
This article appears in the November 2019 issue of Avenue Edmonton.