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Denis McGrath 1968-2017

March 24, 2017

Today the WGC joins the screenwriting community in mourning Denis McGrath, a longstanding WGC councillor. Denis passed away yesterday at St. Joseph’s hospital in Toronto.
 
Denis worked tirelessly for the betterment of Canadian screenwriters, as a councillor since 2008, and as a fierce negotiator through the last two rounds of IPA bargaining. He was a sharp, outspoken advocate for screenwriters through social media, and his blog, Dead Things ON Sticks. Denis took on the powers-that-be in the industry, questioning assumptions and challenging ill-informed rhetoric. Denis never gave up a fight.
 
His professional accomplishments include winning the WGC Writers Block Award for service to Canadian screenwriters (2015), and he was nominated for a Gemini and won a WGC Screenwriting Award for his miniseries, Across the River to Motor City. He was a valued screenwriter on shows including X Company, Continuum, Bitten, The Border, and many others.
 
Denis was also a teacher and a mentor. He served as the Executive Producer in Residence and Showrunner Mentor for the Prime Time program at the Canadian Film Centre; taught students at Ryerson University, and gave generously of his time to both his peers and screenwriting newcomers.
 
Denis famously loved baseball, and knew a hell of a lot about it. He also was passionate about politics, science-fiction, and many kinds of music. But today what we remember most about Denis is his quick wit, his irreverence, and his wonderful deep laugh, a laugh that made us want to laugh along with him. We did, and we thank him for that. His loss is immeasurable. 



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