On the Job

From hi-jinx and camaraderie, to danger and death, On The Job explores the more human elements of firefighting from the perspective of four GTA firefighters.

  • Mike Onley
  • Mike Onley
  • Andrew Newton
  • Project Type:
    Documentary, Short, Student
  • Runtime:
    10 minutes 48 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    July 18, 2017
  • Production Budget:
    500 USD
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  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - Mike Onley

Mike Onley is a writer/director also trained in camera and lighting. He often employs his understanding of cinematography to create a unique and cinematic aesthetic. His background in comedy writing is evident in the subtle charm and levity present even in his more sensitive and dramatic projects.

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Director Statement

Making this film was very important to me not only because I think the subject matter itself deserves some recognition, but also because the people we interviewed for the film are all personal friends and family of mine. My father, and my grandfather, Wayne and Fred Onley, make up half of the cast of the film. I grew up around firefighters, hearing the stories and smelling the smoke on my dad when he would come from a shift. I was always aware of how passionate my family was about firefighting, and as I got older, two of my good friends, Ryan Kennedy and Kevin Katchanoski, decided to chose firefighting as a career as well.

I am often asked why I didn't chose to go down the same path as my father, and his father before him. The honest answer is that I don't share their passion for firefighting, although I am humbled, and intrigued by it. I do, however, feel passionately about storytelling- and this film serves to connect the two worlds of firefighting and film making that exist within my family.