Gala 1 of the Canadian Screen Awards puts the spotlight on top talent

When you’re giving nods to the best in TV, film and digital media, you need more than one night to do so.

Enter the Canadian Screen Awards, which has kicked off a week of festivities celebrating the best our nation’s talent.

While fans are keeping an eye out for talent-spotting opportunities – think In Studio, a star-packed Q&A session on March 7, and Fan Zone, a celebrity meet-and-greet on March 8 – nominees and presenters have awards nights on their calendar.

CLICK ON THE IMAGE FOR THE GALLERY

Dozens of familiar faces came out on March 4 to toast their peers at the first of three awards evenings – this one highlighting the best of news and sports, documentary, lifestyle, reality and digital media. It was a joy to fly the flag for fellow Canadians, according to the stars we caught up with on the red carpet at the gala held at the Sheraton Centre Toronto.

MORE: Martin Short on hosting the Canadian Screen Awards: 'I like the danger of it!'

“It’s always an honour to be among some of the best people in the country,” Cityline host Tracy Moore told Hello! Canada.

“This is our industry – we have to support it,” added Scott McGillivray of Income Property. “It’s an honour to be nominated and to be invited to these events and to be a member as well.”

Fifty-one awards – including three presented by Hello! Canada editor-in-chief Alison Eastwood – were handed out at the gala dinner, which was hosted by CBC’s Steve Patterson and set the tone for what’s sure to be a fun-filled week.

“Last year, the Canadian Screen Awards were a great breakthrough because everyone came together: film, television, new media people,” said Martin Katz, chair of the Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television. “And we had a much better party than anyone expected we would have. And this year, the anticipation is palpable.”

MORE: All the 2014 Canadian Screen Awards nominees

A second awards night (celebrating excellence in drama, comedy, variety, children’s programming and the performing arts) will be held on March 5, followed by the final broadcast awards evening hosted by Martin Short (March 9, CBC).

For a full list of nominees and winners, visit: www.academy.ca/news/

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