Roman Boghdan Kroitor, LL.D., June 1, 1994
Roman Boghdan Kroitor
B.A.(Hons.), M.A.(Man.)

Born in Yorkton, Saskatchewan in 1926, Roman Kroitor was educated in Winnipeg at Mulvey and Gordon Bell Schools. While an undergraduate at the University of Manitoba, he was a campus legend for his invention of a syllogism computer. He earned a BA. (Honours) degree in May, 1950 and was the University Gold Medal winner in Arts. One year later he completed an M.A. degree in philosophy and psychology.

Mr. Kroitor joined the National Film Board of Canada as a summer intern and quickly became a skilled director and a respected producer. His first film Paul Tomkowicz won two international awards and influenced a generation of documentary filmmakers.

During the 1950s he was a member of the National Film Board's famed "unit B." With Tom Daly, Stanley Jackson, Wolf Koenig, and Cohn Low, he helped create films such as City of Gold, Lonely Boy, Universe, and Blood and Fire. Many consider these the golden age of Canadian filmmaking. Universe was so accurate it was used by NASA to train early astronauts.

In the early 1960s Mr. Kroitor expanded the NFB mandate to "show Canada to Canadians" by moving into television. He co-produced and co-directed Candid Eye, the world's first cinema verité television series for CBC.

In no small way Mr. Kroitor is also responsible for how Canada is perceived around the world, contributing films to international fairs and exhibitions in Japan, Korea, Spain and elsewhere. His film Labyrinth was the hit of Montreal's Expo 67 with its multiple screens in three separate theatres.

With the success of Labyrinth Mr. Kroitor left the NFB to become one of the three founders of Imax Corporation. He produced the first-ever Imax film, Tiger Child, for Expo 70 in Osaka, Japan. Other noteworthy Imax films produced or directed by him include The Last Buffalo, Man Belongs to Earth, Skyward, The Rolling Stones at the Max, and We are Born of Stars -- the first Omnimax 3-D movie. Mr. Kroitor was also executive producer of Heartland, the Manitoba Imax movie that helped launch Portage Place.

In the mid - 1970s Mr. Kroitor returned to the National Film Board for three years as an executive producer responsible for developing its now flourishing dramatic film program.

Presently, he is a consultant for Imax, supervising a film based on the novel computer-graphics system he developed, and continuing the tradition that won Imax special Academy Award in 1986 for technological advancements.

One of Canada's premier documentary filmmakers and an innovator in cinematic technologies, Mr. Kroitor has been at the forefront of the Canadian film industry for over forty years.