Eric “Roach” Denis
Before deciding to run for office, Roach had never voted in his life. Refusing to participate in the formal electoral system, Roach preferred his own style of direct democracy – protesting, rioting, filming, being a punk and living out loud.
Roach learned what he knows about politics from the streets. At the age of 14, Roach ran away from a youth detention centre and lived for six years in parks, abandoned cars, homeless shelters, and jail. A self-proclaimed anarcho-punk, Roach’s career as a documentary filmmaker began when he met filmmaker Daniel Cross and started making S.P.I.T.: Squeegee Punks In Traffic. He started off as an activist street-kid junkie, and over three years spent working on the film Roach develops into a filmmaker with a unique voice and a RoachCam. His first solo film, RoachTrip, played at numerous festivals including Hot Docs in Toronto and the Kino Glaz Festival in Russia where it won a prize for its take on two punks looking for freedom in the West of Canada.
Roach’s political platform focuses on one key issue: that the Canadian electoral system needs serious reform, the main need being proportional representation. If we don’t do this, then marginal voices will never have a say in what’s going on. For example, there are tens of thousands homeless Canadians living a third-world version of Canada. Because they are disparate and not unified their vote is meaningless even though they are in the most need of government help.
Roach has been working at EyeSteelFilm for the past several years now, trying to pay off the thousands of dollars of Squeegee tickets he’s accumulated over the years. This is, coincidentally, the subject of his upcoming film, Les tickets.