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Memorable Manitobans: Derek William Mazur (1947-2021)

Film producer.

Born at Edmonton, Alberta on 13 May 1947, son of Linda Watkins and Stanley Mazur, he attended high school at Port Coquitlam, British Columbia and studied commerce at the University of British Columbia. He worked as a stage manager and lighting director at the Vancouver Playhouse and a set carpenter at CBC Vancouver.

He moved to Manitoba in 1971 and, in 1974, co-founded with animator Brad Castor the Winnipeg-based Credo Group, initially making television commercials and public service announcements, and later live action films. Its productions included documentaries, short animated films, television series, reality television miniseries, television movies, and feature films. It played a major role in developing Manitoba's film industry with such releases as Lost in the Barrens (1990), Lost in the Barrens II: The Curse of the Viking Grave (1992) and The Diviners (1993). He received an Emmy, a Genie, and two Geminis, as well as many international festival awards.

Credo Group ceased operation in 2002, the victim of an economic downturn, after which he worked as an executive producer with the National Film Board (2002-2011) and Chief Executive Officer of the Nunavut Film Development Corporation (2011-2017) until retirement. He assisted in the establishment of the Manitoba Motion Picture Industry Association (later OnScreen Manitoba), and served as its President, lobbied for tax incentives to assist the nascent film industry in Manitoba, and was a board member of the National Screen Institute, Banff Television Foundation, and Canadian Film and Television Producers Association.

In recognition of his community service, he received a Manitoba Blizzard Award for Outstanding Achievement and 125th Anniversary of Canadian Confederation Medal (1992).

He died at the St. Boniface Hospital on 11 February 2021.

See also:

Reviews: ‘The New Mayor’: Three Views of the Film by Gene Walz, William Neville & Lawrie Cherniack
Manitoba History, Number 5, Spring 1983

Sources:

“NDP's ad campaign much more effective,” Winnipeg Free Press, 21 November 1981, page 11.

“Producer transformed Manitoba film industry,” Winnipeg Free Press, 17 February 2021, page C3.

Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 20 February 2021.

Derek Mazur, IMDb.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 20 February 2021

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