The Love Crimes of Gillian Guess

The Love Crimes of Gillian Guess is a Canadian drama film, directed by Bruce McDonald and released in 2004.[1] The film is loosely based on the real-life story of Gillian Guess, who was convicted of obstruction of justice in 1998 after she became romantically involved with an accused murderer while serving as a juror at his trial, although McDonald himself freely admitted that the film takes "kooky" diversions into animated and musical sequences rather than attempting to literally depict the true story;[1] in the adaptation, Guess is recounting her version of the story as a guest on a fictional television show hosted by tabloid talk show host Bobby Tomahawk.[2]

The Love Crimes of Gillian Guess
Directed byBruce McDonald
Produced byDebra Beard
Rob Bromley
John Ritchie
Written byAngus Fraser
StarringJoely Collins
Ben Bass
Hugh Dillon
Music byBroken Social Scene
CinematographyDanny Nowak
Edited byKaren Porter
Release date
  • September 17, 2004 (2004-09-17) (TIFF)
Running time
91 minutes

The film stars Joely Collins as Guess, Ben Bass as Peter Gill and Hugh Dillon as Bobby Tomahawk. The film's score was composed by Broken Social Scene, including their single "Lover's Spit", although music by Lucinda Williams, Josh Rouse and Hugh Dillon Redemption Choir was also used.[1]

The film premiered at the 2004 Toronto International Film Festival,[3] but apart from some followup film festival and repertory theatre screenings it was distributed primarily as a television film on Citytv rather than going into general theatrical release.[4]

It was a finalist for Best Motion Picture at the Leo Awards in 2005,[5] and for Best Direction in a Dramatic Program or Miniseries at the 21st Gemini Awards.[6] Collins won the award for Best Actress in a Canadian Film at the Vancouver Film Critics Circle Awards 2004.[7]


  1. ^ a b c "Movie based on Vancouver juror Gillian Guess 'kooky:' director Bruce McDonald". Canadian Press, September 19, 2004.
  2. ^ "Film hard to watch, but worth the effort". Saskatoon Star-Phoenix, January 6, 2006.
  3. ^ "Canadian titles break out of ghetto at 2004 edition of Toronto Film Festival". Canada NewsWire, August 3, 2004.
  4. ^ "Tonight in TO". Toronto Star, September 23, 2005.
  5. ^ "Queue: The Love Crimes of Gillian Guess". Vancouver Sun, April 21, 2005.
  6. ^ "Gemini rule: Voters can be fickle". Ottawa Citizen, November 4, 2006.
  7. ^ "'Elvis Costello of movies' wins top local prize". The Province, January 20, 2005.

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