THE ADVOCATE 89
VOL. 77 PART 1 JANUARY 2019
By R.C. Tino Bella
The Honourable Mr. Justice Christopher Giaschi
Christopher Joseph Giaschi, who was sworn in as a
justice of the Supreme Court of British Columbia on
September 7, 2018, may be the only judge in Canada
to hold a film projectionist licence. If not, he is
surely the only superior court justice and licenced
projectionist in the country who is a past president of
the Canadian Maritime Law Association, a titular
member of the Comité Maritime International, a speaker of Danish and a
skier of the black runs at Courchevel.
But a brief sidebar before proceeding with his story. Chris, as will be seen
soon enough, possesses computer skills matched by few in our profession.
In the late 1990s, before the ubiquity of digital cameras, he conceived a
device to store, catalogue and display digital photographs. he did not pursue
the project, however, and the closest this idea came to production was when
someone in the office proposed to call his invention the “Joss-Key”. This is
how to pronounce our new judge’s name.
Chris was born in Bracebridge, Ontario, population 2,900, and lived
there for all of his first 18 years but one. Chris likes to speak of his humble
origins. He began his working life when he was 11 selling candy in the
hamlet’s only movie theatre. By dint of hard work he graduated from candy
seller to ticket taker to, after years of apprenticeship and a strenuous written
and practical exam, licenced film projectionist. It must be noted, however,
that he did not start work at so tender an age to support an
impoverished family. In fact, his father owned the theatre, having taken it
over from Chris’s grandfather, who taught Chris to splice film when he was
five. Chris’s sister Gina now runs the “show”, as it was referred to around
the dinner table.