Position details: 

Historica Canada’s Heritage Minute collection contains more than 90 one-minute shorts about key moments and figures in Canadian History. More than 25 years since the first Heritage Minute premiered, these spots have become an enduring part of popular culture in Canada. Historica Canada has released 19 new Heritage Minutes since the project was re-launched in 2012, including: Acadian Deportation, D-Day, Vancouver Asahi, Jim Egan, Lucy Maud Montgomery, and Kensington Market.


Historica Canada is seeking two production companies or teams to develop one new Heritage Minute each.

The organization seeks to create engaging new Heritage Minutes that resonate with the brand and legacy of the celebrated collection while offering a fresh vision to capture new audiences.

This new vision might include period dramatizations such as those seen in the established Heritage Minutes, as well as new visual treatments including innovative re-enactments, animation (2D and 3D) and CGI, and/or documentary formats.

Historica Canada will work with historians and consultants, who will provide consultation on script development and production. All aspects of the concept, script, casting, creative direction and production, however, will be required to meet with the final approval of Historica Canada. This is a collaborative process. Historica Canada will be regularly engaged throughout the production process.

Selected teams will be provided a project script written by Historica Canada on the approved 2020-21 topic.

Each Minute will be made available in English and French.


*Note: This is an estimated timeline for the production of ONE Heritage Minute. However, please note that in our experience, the general life cycle of a Heritage Minute production from start to finish ranges from between 6 months to a year, depending on the topic and scale of the project.

November 2019 –RFP opens
January 15, 2020 – RFP closes
February 2020 – Teams selected for interviews will be contacted
March 2020 – Top teams interviewed
April 1, 2020 – Contracts awarded
April-May 2020 – Internal scripting development; consultation with selected teams, historians, and cultural experts
June-August 2020 -
September - October 2020 – Production Phase – execute shoots for each new Minute
November-March 2020-2021 – Post-production Phase – complete all edits, team to deliver final product


The maximum budget, inclusive of all taxes is $150,000 for one Heritage Minute.

Your budget should take into account:

  • English and French versions for each Minute (language dubbing is required; subtitles are not sufficient)
  • ACTRA fees, as per the Heritage Minute agreement (Session fees as per the current Independent Production Agreement, plus an additional 60% of each performer’s net fees for broadcast and new media rights in perpetuity)
  • UDA fees, as per the Heritage Minute agreement* (Session fees multiplied by 2.5 times to guarantee full broadcast and new media rights in perpetuity. *Applicable only if on-screen dialogue is in French.)
  • The possibility of high-profile performers who work above scale
  • Crew, set design, costuming and props
  • Shooting at different locations, including possible crew travel
  • Post-production including editing, music, voice over narration and visual effects/CGI
  • Final broadcast-ready deliverables in both official languages
  • Contingency

Please note, all admin/overhead costs should also be factored into the budget. The total $150,000 should be inclusive of tax.
Please submit your budget using the Telefilm Canada top sheet template.


We are asking companies to submit a treatment for the following topic: the discovery of insulin.
This WILL NOT be the topic of a new Heritage Minute in the new year, simply a topic for the application process.


If you wish to submit a Heritage Minutes proposal to Historica Canada, please prepare a .pdf document which includes the following:

  • Your creative team (including your planned producers, director, and DOP)
  • An executive summary of your company or team
  • Full contact information for the applicant, including phone number and email address
  • Links to reels of recent work for your company and proposed creative team
  • Please include any potential scheduling conflicts and other big projects your team is taking on in the above timeframe
  • A short, one paragraph treatment on how you would approach the proposed topic (treatment can include your notes on narrative approach, artistic style, theme etc. NO scripts please)
  • A mood board on how you would approach the proposed topic
  • A draft budget following the aforementioned specifications using the Telefilm Canada Top Sheet

Please limit your proposal to a maximum of 10 pages, including appendices.


Selection will be based on the assessment of three aspects of submission:

Treatment Concept: Overall vision and appropriateness for the organization’s needs and brand will be considered; including any innovative elements in your proposed concept. Demonstrated research into the topic will be considered an asset.

Work Samples and References: Quality of your portfolio, such as: your experience with similar projects including client work; your flexibility pertaining to potential shifts in project scope or timelines; integrity; and your process for developing and carrying out the project in a timely manner. Please note that the production team or company should be available during regular working hours.

Budget: Budget must be submitted through the Telefilm Canada top sheet template and must be appropriate and reasonable to the project. Budget lines and a best estimate of pro bono work must be clearly defined in the proposal.

Competition is limited to Canadian companies and Canadian citizens only.


Historica Canada is the largest charitable organization dedicated to Canadian history, identity and citizenship. Its mandate is to build active and informed citizens through greater knowledge and appreciation of the history, heritage and stories of Canada.

Information about the organization and programs may be found at All of the Heritage Minutes may be found here.


An electronic copy of the proposal in .pdf format is due January 15, 2020 at 5 p.m. ET to with the subject heading “Heritage Minutes RFP 2019– ‘YOUR COMPANY NAME’”.

Questions may be sent to No extensions will be granted. No phone calls please.

We regret that due to the high volume of applicants we are unable to provide detailed feedback to unsuccessful candidates.

This is an open and competitive process. Proposals will be evaluated immediately thereafter. Historica Canada will select the top 10 proposals for follow-up interviews in person or by phone in mid-February 2020. Please note that the services performed by the selected production company in regard to the new Heritage Minutes shall be for the exclusive benefit of Historica Canada. All work products generated as well as copyright for the Heritage Minutes shall belong to Historica Canada.

Application closing date: 
Wednesday, January 15, 2020 - 17:00