We need a CFL films!!

I will say it!!!
NFL films has given you the blue print copy away…
Anything that gives us more CFL football is a good thing.

  1. CBC has no reason to contribute since it no longer has a business relationship with the league.

  2. CBC (and CTV back in the day) did not archive most games – they reused videotape by recording over top of previous recordings. Most games from the past are not archived anywhere.

  3. One of the secrets of NFL Films’ creative success is the fact that it is (or at least was, before the digital era) shot on film rather than video. That allowed for much more artistic work, super slo-mo, etc. It was grainy but looked much different than televised games look. Simply taking segments from televised games would not come close to replicating the look and feel of NFL Films.

I suspect almost nothing has been digitized or catalogued. A few years ago the Cdn Football Hall of Fame had to burn much of its game-film collection because it had decomposed, was mouldy, etc.

As I said in another post, the networks did not routinely archive games. I almost certainly have far more games (now all digitized, after years of transferring from VHS) in my personal collection than the league or any other corporate entity has. I offered years ago to share the entire collection with the league after it put out the call to fans; never heard back.

When did you reach out to the league? I work for the league office and manage the digital archives for the league office today and I’d love to add to it. Can you e-mail me at ssyed@cfl.ca with some info on what you’ve collected?

NFL Films has done several “Road to the Grey Cup” for each team that goes to the cup. I’m not sure if the CFL hired them to do so, but they did it. My point is that if people really want something like NFL Films, then why not just hire them to do it?

If you want to copy… get serious about it, and hire the source of what you’re copying in the first place.

All kinds of things can be pulled from existing footage no matter where or how it was shot, and then creatively assembled along with still images and interviews to tell the story of a particular game. Are you going to have closeups of Ron Lancaster’s bleeding elbow? Maybe not, but memories tend to be sketchy and hazy over time anyway, so it won’t matter that there isn’t crystal clear footage. It’s about the writing as much as anything else. There just needs to be enough money in the budget to hire the people to do it.

I for one think it would make for a tremendous YouTube channel, along the lines of the The Great War channel that did a week-by-week retelling of the war in real time. It was produced by only 3 people. The CFL has more than enough material to do 15 minute episodes of each week for entire seasons. That doesn’t mean showing every game, it only means capsulizing the weekly events and highlighting the best in a dramatic way. It would be a unique format and should be relatively easy to do. It could even be done by fans and supported on Patreon.

How about the older Grey Cup games?

Make a contest out of it and then put the winner on your youtube channel. I’m sure it would go over well. Some fans would love to commentate a Grey Cup game.

That might make sense to do if we awarded a prize or something for the best telecast, because that really is asking a lot (it’s a long broadcast). Maybe asking them to commentate a single quarter or something would work. I also don’t actually have a clean feed recording, I should look into that…

You can probably cut it down a little by editing it a second or two before the snap.
Ideally, you’d offer a game two weeks after the fact and then you’ll be able to compete with other football leagues that have cut their games to 2.5 hours (for those with short attention spans).

Maybe even cut out the referees announcing the penalties, just have it scroll along the bottom or something.

Better to outsource. Likely cheaper, too.

Why outsource when you already have a sports network that has all the talent it needs. Seems like a needless expense.

Now, if people would actually watch these instead of complaining that they don’t exist, it would be a tremendous incentive to create more. 17 likes. That’s how many the Calgary one has on YouTube. That’s really pathetic.

Contest to provide the best 30-minute game summary, which would be easier to judge.

Who would want to watch that?

There are people out there who don’t like the stoppages in football, preferring constant action. If the league would provide the occasional blank slate of games, edited to the snap and devoid of commercials, it could open up a new market for them.

Netflix has money to burn and combine that with Canadian grants for this type of work and you have a CFL film with little cost .

Really liked Keiffer Sutherlands voice over for the CFL promo .

The CFL it reflects us all .

Netflix does not have money to burn. It is in business to make a profit and will spend when and where it perceives there is an appropriate payoff. Spending money to make CFL films does not seem like an idea that Netflix would embrace. To me, at least.

You don’t watch Netflix much do you . They torched a few pesos .

In 2017 they have made a commitment for 500 million in five years for Canadian content .

After watching the crap they produce on their own they have money to burn .

They would love to meet someone that can produce a story from the CFL rich history .

Surprised our own have not pitched unless it’s Bell Media and Crave putting on the brakes .

Source :

CFL originals on Youtube do a decent job with a very very limited budget .

But TSN a few years back did a bang up job with John Candy - True Double Blue

I watch plenty of Netflix, not that that makes a difference to this discussion. If you want to believe they will throw money at the CFL, be my guest. IMO there is no chance of that happening.

I think your way off the mark on what I suggest . It’s not the CFL they throw money at it’s the story . It’s the opportunity .

If you watched Netflix you can see the thin content and ideas . With the aid of Canadian Government Film Grants and Netflix there is opportunity .

It’s someone wanting to make either a documentary like HBO’s Broad Street Bullies
which is amazing … or a dramatization of a sports story like CTV’s movie The man who Lost Himself the Terry Evanshen Story that I suggest .

The CFL Films that is this forum topic based on the NFL Films is just one way to produce product that promotes the CFL . There are many others which inspire like the one I gave example to the CFL promo with Keiffer Sutherlands voice over which is similar effect to the NFL films .

There are many stories and documentary films that could be produced it doesn’t necessarily have to come from the CFL head office however their cooperation would be needed .

With trademark etc laws the CFL would be required to be a willing partner with someone willing to produce something worthy of proper production value .

With the conflict of interest of Bell media’s investment in the CFL I wonder if someone could still venture with a competitor if they shared the production like CBC did with Alias Grace and Netflix .

What story?

This reminds me when the cereal company announced they were willing to listen to writers’ pitches for TV shows based on their mascots.

There’s no broad interest in CFL stories. The CFL needs to concentrate on what it does best.