G'day for Garra

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment has appointed Michele Garra to the newly created position of senior vp Asia Pacific, overseeing business in the expanding markets of Japan, Australia, New Zealand, India and Korea. Garra was managing director for Australia and New Zealand at the studio's home entertainment arm. She will report to Matt Brown, executive vp SPHE international.

Tokyo in Short Shorts

The 10th annual Short Shorts Film Festival opened in Tokyo and neighboring port Yokohama on Friday with a strong focus on international efforts. In all, 80 shorts from 25 countries were selected from nearly 3,000 submissions. The festival's Grand Prix winner will be put forward for nomination for the 81st Annual Academy Awards, which has given the fest accreditation. The fest runs through June 14.

CTF plan panned

Canadian content creators on Friday panned a CRTC proposal to split a key industry fund in a bid to boost ratings for homegrown shows. Guy Mayson, president and CEO of the Canadian Film and Television Production Assn., said it would be costly and regressive to split the Canadian Television Fund into a commercial, ratings-driven stream and a second cultural stream for public broadcasters. Maureen Parker, executive director of the Writers Guild of Canada, said that duplication and bureaucracy will be introduced to appease rebel cable operators like Shaw Communications and Videotron that have said they don't want to contribute to the fund in the first place. The CRTC report into the CTF is now in the hands of the federal government.