National Treasure #38: Gordon Pinsent

“Look out across the bay.  What do you see?”
“Dark clouds.”
“No, lad, there’s no drama in that. I see, Storm Threatens Town.
“But what do I write tomorrow if there is no storm?”
Town Saved.”
– As-remembered conversation between Pinsent, gruff newspaper editor,
and Spacey, novice reporter, in The Shipping News

Gordon Pinsent, born in 1930 in Newfoundland, has been a fixture of Canadian stage, film, and television since 1957.  He’s a Companion of the Order of Canada, a recipient of the Governor General’s Performing Arts Award (I guess you don’t “win” those), and he has a star on Canada’s Walk of Fame.

And he has a sense of humour and a delightful accent. Well, of course he does: he was born in Newfoundland.


This is one of a series on Canadian national treasures – my sesquicentennial project. They reflect people (living and dead), places and things that I think are worth celebrating about our country, and are done in no order of precedence.

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