Royal Canadian Navy earns first prize for military film in International Film Festival

Navy News / September 14, 2015

The Royal Canadian Navy’s (RCN) film production team won the Golden Sabre award for the best military film production at the Sixth International Historical and Military Film Festival in Warsaw, Poland on September 8, 2015. The Canadian Ambassador to Poland, Alexandra Bugailiskis, received the award on behalf of Canada.

“I am very pleased to accept this award on behalf of the Royal Canadian Navy and producer Mr. Charles Hutton Brown,”  said Ms. Bugailiskis. “We are very proud of our film, which documents the successful program to modernize the Halifax-class frigates. One of these modernized frigates was in port in Gdynia just last June as part of a major NATO exercise. There seems to always be a Polish connection when it comes to Canada and this film is no exception. The co-producer and director of photography of our winning entry, HALIFAX CLASS MODERNIZATION – HCM FELEX, was Mr. Jacek Szymanski, a Polish immigrant to Canada. To hone his skills in the art of time-lapse photography he spent the summer of 2011 here in Poland studying with the Polish photographer Patryk Kizny in Wroclaw.”

Mr. Brown, the RCN film production team manager, was delighted at the news. “We are thrilled to have won this award after competing for it with so many respected peers from other armed forces,” said Mr. Brown. “It was a challenging process, but we are especially glad because it brings such deserved attention to HCM project personnel. They accomplished so much; military and civilian members alike. They are a fantastic team.”

The prize-winning video features details of HCM/FELEX (Halifax Class Modernization and Frigate Life Extension) Project, taking the viewer on site in the shipyard and on board a ship going through the refit program. This project is key to the transition to Canada’s future fleet. The project manages both the modernization of the combat systems and a planned mid-life ship refit to ensure the frigates remain effective throughout their service life. This work encompasses modernization of the ships’ platform, including ships’ systems upgrades, acquisition and installation of new capabilities such as enhanced radar, changes to the platform needed to accommodate the new capabilities, and integration of all aspects of the ships’ operations into an upgraded Combat Management System.

The HCM-FELEX Project video will be featured as part of Canada’s participation in the Defence Security Equipment international exhibition (DSEi), to be held in London, United Kingdom from September 15 to 28, 2015. Commander RCN Vice-Admiral Mark Norman and Her Majesty’s Canadian Ship Winnipeg will be participating in DSEi 2015, one of the world’s largest defence and security exhibitions.

“Receiving this prize is a wonderful honour for the Canadian Armed Forces and the Royal Canadian Navy,” said VAdm Norman. “It’s a tribute to the professionalism and devotion of our personnel. Bravo Zulu to our film production team who made this happen!”

To view the winning video, go to: