Speaker Melanie Orr

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Melanie Orr

Director

Children Ruin Everything, The Hardy Boys

Melanie Orr is an award-winning director who has also been nominated for three Emmy Awards. She expertly balances her projects between one-hour dramas and half-hour comedies. Melanie is most known for her work on The Hardy Boys and Children Ruin Everything as well as her innovative directing style. 

She started in this industry serving popcorn at the movie theatres. It was there that she saw the power of an audience, and it drew her to pursue a career as a filmmaker. Starting out as a Script Supervisor, she spent 15 years protecting the story, before transitioning into directing and was thrilled to be the one to tell the story. Melanie made her directorial debut with the psychological thriller Harm’s Way starring Kathleen Quinlan. She then directed two more features, Grindstone Rd. starring Fairuza Balk, Greg Bryk and Devil's Mercy starring Stephen Rea. While balancing a dual career, it was her work as a Script Supervisor and Second Unit Director on Orphan Black that sparked her creatively to pursue directing in episodic television. 

In 2015 Melanie was selected for the highly competitive Shaw Media and NSI Diverse TV Director’s Program and has been busy directing television ever since. With over 85+ episodes of television to her credits, her work can be seen on APPLE+, HULU, NETFLIX, AMAZON, CTV, NBC UNIVERSAL, NICKELODEON, FAMILY CHANNEL, YTV, CBC, SESAME WORKSHOP, MTV AND PBS. 

In 2019, she received her first Emmy Nomination for Outstanding Direction in a Children’s Program for her work on Odd Squad Season 2. Then in 2021, she received two more Emmy Nominations for Outstanding Direction for her work on the Apple+ shows, Ghostwriter and Helpsters. 

Melanie has a great skill in working with VFX elements in storytelling, especially interactions with CGI characters. She has directed monsters, creatures and aliens on the action-adventure series, Endlings (CBC, BBC and HULU) and twins and dragons in the fantasy series, Ghostwriter (Apple+). Melanie was nominated in 2022 for a Canadian Screen Award for Best Direction in Children's or Youth for her work on Endlings. 

Starting in the half-hour kids and family genre, and with a passion for all stories young adult, Melanie expanded into One Hour Dramas with multiple episodes on both of the YA series Utopia Falls (Sonar/HULU) and Hardy Boys (Corus/HULU). In 2021 Melanie won a DGC Award for Outstanding Direction for her work on The Hardy Boys and returned to season two to direct multiple episodes. She has also received a Canadian Screen Award nomination for Best Direction on Hardy Boys in 2022. 

Melanie is also drawn to complicated family stories and loves to use interesting, out-of-the-box layers to inject drama, comedy and heart into family dynamics. This led her to direct the pilots for the series The Parker Andersons and Amelia ParkerFollowing this, she tackled her first network comedy, CTV's Children Ruin Everything, where she directed half of the first season and will be returning for season two. In addition to this, Melanie directed multiple episodes of Run The Burbs, a new half-hour comedy for CBC airing in March 2022.

At the Banff Media Festival, we met with Netflix and took a ride up Sulphur Mountain on the gondola. That’s where we made the pitch.
- Naveen Prasad, EVP and GM, Elevation Pictures

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