100 Stories

Marc Gervais, S.J., B.A. (Loyola), Ph.L (St. Mary's), M.F.A. (The Catholic University of America), M.Th. (Regis), Ph.D. (Paris-Sorbonne)

(1929-2012)

Marc Gervais, S.J.

Professor of Film at Loyola College and Concordia University (retired)

Father Marc Gervais, S.J., delivered the inaugural Nash Memorial Lecture, and was a visiting scholar at Campion College in the 2003 and 2004 fall semesters.

Well-known and well respected in the film industry, Marc shared with others a passion for film, and Westerns in particular. Many have noted his contagious energy that made it very difficult not to share his love of great cinematography. What many may not realize is the number of students he taught who went on to become award-winning directors.

Marc was born and raised in Quebec, earning his Bachelor Arts degree from the Jesuit-run Loyola College in Montreal in 1950. He then entered the Jesuit order at the Stanislaus Novitiate in Guelph, Ontario. Throughout these years, he studied philosophy and taught English Literature and drama. Marc went on to earn a Master of Fine Arts in drama from The Catholic University of America in Washington, DC, and then studied theology at Regis College, where he began to develop a key interest in film studies.

Upon completing his tertianship in 1965, the final formal period of formation within the Society of Jesus, Marc relocated to Paris where he studied communication arts at University of Paris-Sorbonne. He took his final vows on February 2, 1968 in Montreal.

Marc joined the faculty at Loyola College, and then Concordia University, where he would teach film courses until his retirement in 2003. Marc was a well respected academic in the film community, and regular attendee of the Cannes Film Festival. In her 2012 memorial tribute to Marc Gervais, author Diana Thebaud Nicholson quotes veteran Montreal film critic John Griffin, “His influence was all pervasive, his knowledge of film was prodigious, and his enthusiasm was infectious... Film to him was more important than petty cantor or dogma. He raised at least one generation of important Canadian film makers.” (sic)

Marc was Campion College’s inaugural speaker for the Nash Memorial Lecture series, which was founded in 1979 by Joseph B. Gavin, SJ, to honour the first president of Campion College at the University of Regina. The lecture was held in January of that year, at which Marc presented a talk on his book Cries and Whispers: Voices Old and New in the Liberal Arts Tradition. Marc also taught at the college in 2003 and 2004 as a visiting lecturer.