Blake (film)

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Directed by Bill Mason
Starring Blake James
Release dates
  • 1969 (1969)
Country Canada

Blake is a 1969 short documentary by Bill Mason about his friend and fellow filmmaker Blake James, who pilots his own plane. The film was produced by the National Film Board of Canada (NFB).[1][2]

Filming Blake was often dangerous. On one occasion, Mason lost sight of James while filming from another airplane. It was discovered that James had been forced to land on an island in the St. Lawrence River after forgetting to switch on his main fuel tank. The film was shown theatrically in Canada and acquired by an American distributor. Theatrical showings in the U.S. led to an Oscar nomination in the live-action short category.[2]

Mason and James first met at a commercial art studio in Winnipeg. They later worked together at Crawley Films before both going to the NFB.[2] James' film credits include an animated vignette on Canadian aviation pioneer Wilfrid R. "Wop" May.[3] He also starred in Mason's acclaimed short film The Rise and Fall of the Great Lakes.


Awards for Blake included three Golden Sheaf Awards, for best film, best social science film as well as the award for best directing.[4] The film received an Etrog Award (now known as a Genie Award) for Best Film under 30 minutes and was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Live Action Short Film.[1][2] Blake also received the Grand Prize at the 1971 Melbourne Film Festival.[5]


  1. ^ a b "Blake". Collection. National Film Board of Canada. Retrieved 19 November 2009. 
  2. ^ a b c d Ohayon, Albert. "Blake". Curator's comments. Montreal: National Film Board of Canada. Retrieved 19 November 2009. 
  3. ^ James, Blake (1972). "Wop May". Canada Vignettes. National Film Board of Canada. Retrieved 2009-04-21. 
  4. ^ Shaw, Ruth (23 October 1971). "Major film award to NFB". Regina Leader-Post. p. 4. Retrieved 23 November 2012. 
  5. ^ "NFB production wins Aussie award". Saskatoon Star-Phoenix (Canadian Press). p. 5. Retrieved 23 November 2012.  |first1= missing |last1= in Authors list (help)

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