2004 was the year of living on the edge, as the Canadiandollar's value soared against the US currency. And thegovernment-mandated push for box-office results only served to highlight thedisparity between the popularity of French-language films in Quebec versus lackof interest in non-English-language fare in the rest of Canada.

The person of the year was Denys Arcand, whose TheBarbarian Invasions won Canada its firstOscar (not for a documentary) and won Cesars for best picture and bestscreenplay. Needless to say, it won the top prize at Canada's GenieAwards.

Overheard this year

'I don't think film critics or Academy membersare judging a film by the location in which it was a shot.' ProducerRobert Lantos on concerns that productions shooting outside the US might bepunished during awards season.

Breakthrough talent

Rachel McAdams had been working in Canadian theatre and TVfor several years before breaking out with a lead performance in NickCassavettes' The Notebook and aslick support as the nastiest of Mark Waters' Mean Girls. Next up for her are David Dobkin's TheWedding Crashers, opposite Owen Wilson, WesCraven's Red-Eye, with Cillian Murphy and Lakeshore Entertainment'sremake of Italian hit The Last Kiss,opposite Zach Braff.

The year ahead

'I hope that people will continue to watch films theway they were meant to be shown, through projection, and that the notion ofcinephilia won't be relegated to home cinemas.' Atom Egoyan,film-maker and cinema owner.

'The government has a surplus of $9bn but wants to cut5% from [Telefilm's subsidy]. It's totally disgraceful.[Canada's] government does not understand what culture can bring to acountry.' Roger Frappier, producer.

Box office snapshot

Highest-grossing film: Shrek 2 (DreamWorks) $37.2m

Highest-grossing arthouse film: The Passion Of The Christ (Equinoxe) $19.1m

Highest-grossing local film: Resident Evil 2:Apocalypse (Alliance Atlantis) $5.1m