RIP Former CBC Vancouver/Regina TV Executive Elie Savoie, 84

SAVOIE, Elie Alfred Joseph
April 27, 1935 – June 28, 2019

As first reported by Northwest Broadcasters, former CBC Vancouver executive Elie Savoie died June 28 at Eagle Ridge Hospital in Port Moody at age 84.

In the 1960’s he held a number of positions with CFCR-TV Kamloops (now CFJC-TV), then worked briefly as a Production Assistant for CHAN-TV (now Global BC), before joining CBC Vancouver in 1964.

In 1977, Savoie accepted the position of PD with CBC Regina, returning to CBC-TV Vancouver as PD in 1983, working with independent producers to develop regional programming.

As detailed in a Vancouver Sun/Province obituary, Elie will be loved and missed by his wife of 57 years, Darleen; son Roger (Tina); daughter Michelle (Marc); granddaughter Katie; and sister Cecile; nieces, nephews, extended family and dear friends. He is predeceased by parents Donat and Marie; and brother Leo.

Elie was born on April 27, 1935 in Fort Francis, Ontario and then spent many years of his childhood in St. Boniface, Manitoba before settling in Vancouver. Elie enjoyed an accomplished 40+ year career in the performing arts which included acting, directing and producing in both theatre and television, most notably as Director and Producer of “The Beachcombers”. He retired in 1987 after 36 years with CBC television.

In lieu of flowers and services and to honor Elie, the family asks that all who wish to participate make a donation to the Canadian Alzheimer Association or a performing arts charity of your choice.

Published on July 8, 2019 at 8:52 am by clockwatcher

Comments

July 9, 2019 - 3:20 pm

Denise Young

You were a pleasure to work with Elie, and had a great sense of humour, which made every day a little more enjoyable.


July 9, 2019 - 8:19 pm

Allan Bonner

Elie was a gentleman and gentle man. He was generous to me and I have been grateful for 42 years


July 9, 2019 - 9:02 pm

Allan Bonner

Not very many nice and competent people work in television. It’s an ego-driven business that used to be very expensive to produce, and which caused those who didn’t know what they were doing to look foolish in front of many, many people. And, if you’re going to both look foolish and waste a lot of money, some even less nice person makes sure you don’t get to do either. There’s always a charlatan in the room to quote the adage that you’re only as good as your last show, or next show, or you’ll n every eat lunch in this town again. It was even worse in the small and medium sized markets with the boozers on their way down and the kids on their way up—trying to prove something. 45 or so years ago the latter was me in Regina-Moose Jaw. That location was burdened with a daily drive between Regina and Moose Jaw because CBC had bought a Moffat station an hour down the road and that’s where we had to go to read the TV news. Some drove off the road in the process.

Into this mix came Elie—a nice guy, gentleman, and more than competent. I met him on his tour, being taken around by DBW—Don Browne Wilkinson. Elie exuded the calm and gravitas that is possessed only by someone who’d done a lot, but didn’t have to prove it, or remind people of it every other day. Elie joined us, despite the tour of the old shoe store on Main Street in Moose Jaw. He worked with many who’d not accomplished much, but reminded people of their unremarkable accomplishments every other day. Elite was calm and generous. He helped our graphics guy who did the “supers” fund a documentary on wolves. He gave a producer a free hand to do another documentary. Rumour was that when it because obvious the footage shot (film) was unusable, rumour also had it that Elie spent his vacation time in Vancouver editing it to save the day.

Elite did a lot for me. We’d speak some French together, which I pretended to speak a little more than I should have. He knew I wanted experiences that Regina could not offer and he picked up the phone while I sat in his office and told CBC’s first female Executive Producer, Chris Paton, that I’d be ideal for CBC Vancouver’s 6 o’clock news program—Hourglass. It worked and off I went for the summer. Because of Elie, I worked with the great and late Fred Latremouille, then sports-casters Scott Oak (filling in for a day), Steve Armitage, Bill Good Jr.., and the legendary talk show host Jack Webster. Harvey Dawes and Judy Piercie read the news, Russ McNeil contributed interviews, and guests included Hermut Schmidt of ‘Germany.

Thanks Elie.

Elie’s demeanour was explained to me by the video librarian. She said he’d been hold up in cheap hotels on shoots, including at Gibson’s BC where he produced The Beachcomers for so long, he could not adopt a pompous or officious tone. He was a gentleman, and gentle man, even when I unceremoniously quite TV for local Radio and a few months later was transferred to the network in Toronto. I did not encounter executives of his caliber at the network.

Elie had honed his people skills with the best. Bruno Gerusi, star of The Beachcomers, liked his face time on camera. He numbered his facial expressions, reaction shots, and such. Elie would ask for “#14” in order to get a shot for editing purposes. One day Bruno had been a little hard to handle, so Elie taught him a nice, quite, gentlemanly lesson.
shot around him all day. This meant Bruno was not required in a scene or even for a reaction shot. Bruno became agitated and offered facial expression #17…20…13…anything.” Elie thanked Bruno for the offer, continued to shoot around him, and made his point.

Elie has given me the gift of a lifetime of dining out on working with legends, including him.

I’m so sorry I’d not thanked him more, including recently, and swapped more stories with him. I and the others he helped are grateful. I hope his family are proud.

Bye Elie.


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