Best actors from QMJHL Telus West cities
Editor’s note: This is the latest installment in a recurring series where a Pucks and Rec writer will select the top contemporary actor from each city in a hockey league. This week, we focus on the current markets in the QMJHL Telus West division. All filmography and award information was found on the Internet Movie Database.
Blainville-Boisbriand: Benoit Langlais
No one in this field has emerged to represent Boisbriand, where the Armada are based. But Langlais was born in the other half of the team’s dateline in 1983. He has since made assorted TV and short-film appearance between the ages of seven and 33.
In his most recent major endeavor, Langlais got second billing in 2013’s La maison du pêcheur. The retelling of a 1969 Quebec Independence movement earned director Alain Chartrand a Grand Prix des Amériques nomination at the Montreal World Film Festival.
Drummondville: Kim Poirier
After two idle years, Poirier is poised to return to the big screen in Night Wings. The 38-year-old is one of five announced cast members to date.
The upcoming action thriller will be a throwback to some of Poirier’s better-known American projects. She had minor roles in 2002’s American Psycho II and 2004’s Dawn of the Dead.
More recently, on the small screen, she garnered a noteworthy change of pace with a one-off spot on Mad Men. As Camille, an acquaintance of Don Draper’s eventual second wife, Megan, Poirier lent a subtle nod to her roots. Both Megan and her portraying actress, Jessica Pare, hail from Montreal. And of course, Poirier got to exchange dialogue with Jon Hamm.
An honorable mention goes Karin Vanasse. The one-time Genie (2010) and two-time Jutra (2003, 2000) winner is now starring on CTV’s Cardinal.
Gatineau: Mathieu Bourassa-Simpson
While native to Buckingham, Que., Bourassa-Simpson finished his upbringing in Gatineau. That was where he started toeing in the industry early, yielding 10 completed acting credits before his 26th birthday.
Bourassa-Simpson will reach that age this June, and will also have another project released in 2018. With the short film, 100 Days Before Tomorrow: Chronicles of a Crime, he will have tallied eight production credits as well. It will also make three collaborations with another young Gatineau product, the 24-year-old Yannick St-George.
Rouyn-Noranda: Britt S. Baker
There is admittedly not much to go on here with Baker. The only living onscreen entertainer (or former entertainer) with Rouyn-Noranda roots logged her lone IMDB credit in 1982. At age 17, she played a minor role as Skunkette in the American dramedy Ladies and Gentlemen, the Fabulous Stains.
Baker did not follow a path to an entertainment career in adulthood. But in her one onscreen project, she did work an up-and-coming Diane Lane and Laura Dern. In addition, hockey fans would be intrigued to know that Slap Shot screenwriter Nancy Dowd penned the script. Although she used the pseudonym Rob Morton for that project.
Sherbrooke: Maxim Gaudette
Gaudette began this decade with a pair of awards for supporting acting in Polytechnique. He readily followed that with a nomination in the same category by the Vancouver Film Critics Circle for his part in Incendies.
Between 2015 and 2016, he nearly added to his trophy case after upgrading to the main role category. His performance as protagonist David LeBlanc in Les êtres chers (Our Loved Ones) drew nods from the Canadian Screen Actors and Jutra panels.
While he came up short in those races, Gaudette remains tied with fellow Sherbrookian Sarah Lassez with two acting awards. He wins out for this list’s purposes for having fresher hardware from more mainstream guilds.
Lassez won at a New York-based independent festival in 1998, then another in Los Angeles in 2006. As of this writing, her latest credit comes from 2015’s The Wicked Within. Gaudette was last seen onscreen with seven appearances on L’Imposteur this past autumn.
Val-d’Or: Pierre Brassard
His town’s only native with multiple acting credits in this century, Brassard has aggregated eight guest appearances on four TV shows in the last four years. He previously held a supporting position behind the Gemeaux-winning tandem of Anne Dorval and Marc Labreche on the sitcom Le coeur a ses raisons.