A CBC spokesperson told the Globe that documentaries commissioned by The Lens will now be broadcast on The Passionate Eye or on other doc programs such as Doc Zone or The Nature of Things. The Passionate Eye will move from a two-night per week schedule to a seven-day airing schedule.
The Lens, formerly Rough Cuts, has aired about 175 documentaries from independent filmmakers since it began 16 years ago.
Norm Bolen, president of the Canadian Film and Television Producers Association, said:
“We understand the financial constraints all broadcasters are under but the documentary genre should be better represented and funded by the broadcasting sector. The Lens was the only CBC documentary program devoted exclusively to the works of independent producers. This cancellation will have a significant negative impact on the independent documentary production.”
CBC spokesperson Jeff Keay said:
“I’m not saying there won’t be any reductions. But the CBC is committed to spending the maximum that we can do on independent production. The reality is we have a serious financial problem, but we’re absolutely committed to Canadian documentaries.”