I met John at BARGE in 2005 and interacted with him on RGP, so I was very saddened to see this on RGP this morning. For those who didn't know him, John was a top film critic in Toronto and a helluva smart and nice guy. We'll miss you John.
Here is the article:
Toronto film critic found dead
Globe and Mail Update
December 18, 2007 at 6:56 PM EST
John Harkness, the film critic for NOW Magazine since its beginning on Sept. 10, 1981, was found dead in his home in Toronto on Tuesday, according to Michael Hollet, the tabloid's editor and publisher. Mr. Harkness, who was 53 had been suffering from high cholesterol. "He had never missed a deadline in 26 years," Mr. Hollet said Tuesday fternoon, "so we sent somebody to his house when his copy didn't arrive." That is when they found his body and called the police.
Born in Montreal in 1954, Mr. Harkness grew up in Halifax and Sarnia. He earned a degree in English literature from Carleton University in Ottawa before doing graduate work in Cinema Studies at Columbia University in New York City, where he studied under critic Andrew Sarris.
"John Harkness was simply the best film critic in Canada over the last 26 years," said Mr. Hollet in a press release. "He has been an essential element of NOW magazine's success and his unique vision and bravery and art in expressing it inspired all of us at NOW to strive."
Mr. Harkness also wrote for Sight And Sound, Take One, and the Cinematheque Ontario program and spent several years as a trade reporter for Screen International and Cinema Canada. His book on the Oscars, The Academy Awards Handbook, is currently in its eighth edition.