Who We Are
The Writers Guild of Canada (WGC) represents more than 2,200 professional English-language screenwriters across Canada. These are the creators who write the distinctly Canadian entertainment we enjoy on our televisions, movie screens, and digital platforms.
And the WGC is here to help. From administering the contracts of its members to advising and informing producers of the process of engaging a professional screenwriter (including providing access to members who have chosen to publish a profile in our member directory) the WGC works to help make projects happen — and smoothly.
What we do
The prime occupation of the Guild is to negotiate, enforce and administer collective agreements setting out the minimum terms and conditions of work in the Guild’s jurisdiction — independent English-language production in Canada. The central collective agreement, the Independent Production Agreement, is negotiated between the Guild and the associations representing independent producers — the Canadian Media Production Association (CMPA) and the Association Québécoise de la Production Médiatique (AQPM). Agreements have also been negotiated with the CBC, NFB, TVOntario, CTV, Global, and ACCESS (Alberta). We also provide industry standard writing contracts, ensure contracts comply with the collective agreements, pursue royalties, and resolve disputes on working conditions, payment, and writing credits.
As the voice of Canadian screenwriters, the Guild works to raise the profile of writers through a number of marketing and advocacy initiatives. The Guild actively promotes writers and their craft by publishing Canadian Screenwriter magazine and a Directory of Members, holding the annual WGC Screenwriting Awards, and organizing training seminars and networking opportunities. The Guild also undertakes extensive lobbying and policy projects, working closely with government agencies to promote Canada’s indigenous film and television industry.
Several years ago, the Guild also established the Canadian Screenwriters Collection Society (CSCS) to collect and distribute foreign authors’ levies legislated for screenwriters from secondary uses in Europe and other jurisdictions. Membership in CSCS is free for all WGC members.
The Guild works closely with other screenwriter organizations around the world and is a member of the International Affiliation of Writers Guilds (IAWG), the body representing guilds of professional screenwriters. Agreements are in place allowing members of the WGC working in most other guilds’ jurisdictions to have their initiation fees waived when joining.
How we work
The Guild is governed by a seven-member council of screenwriter members, who set policies and oversee Guild activities. Additional advice and input is received from a fifteen-member national forum, who meet annually with council and staff. Both bodies are composed of Guild members elected for two-year terms from Canada’s five regions (Atlantic, Quebec, Central, Western and Pacific). The executive director and staff manage the Guild’s day-to-day operations.