The Babz Chula Lifeline for Artists Society

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Vancouver Actor Babz Chula Passes Away

It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of beloved Vancouver actor, Babz

Chula. Ms. Chula was a multiple‐award winning actor of stage, screen and television. She has been fighting two

forms of cancer since 2002, and on May 7th, 2010 she passed away at home, surrounded by her family.

Ms. Chula was born in SPRINGFIELD, MASS, the eldest daughter of an amateur actress. She went on to a singing

career with the band “Streethearts,” and starred in The Vancouver Opera’s Threepenny Opera. She had regular

and leading roles in Vancouver‐shot television series like Madison, The Commish, Cold Squad, and These Arms

of Mine (which netted her a Gemini Award). The queen of independent film, her credits include: Bruce

Sweeny’s Dirty, Live Bait, and Last Wedding, Ben Ratner’s Moving Malcolm, and Carl Bassai’s Mothers and

Daughters (which won her a Leo Award), and Fathers and Sons (which is yet to be released).

Ms. Chula was first diagnosed with Breast Cancer in 2002, and in 2005, was diagnosed with a rare form of

blood cancer. She beat the Breast Cancer for several years, but in 2008, learned that it had returned. At that

time, a group of her friends formed The Babz Chula Lifeline for Artists Society, ostensibly to help with Babz’

medical expenses, but it was always her wish that the Society become her legacy. Recently, the Society has

undergone changes to allow it to support other artists. Ms. Chula continued to work during her Cancer

treatment, which encompassed traditional and alternative healing methods. She recently returned from an

Ayervidic healing centre in India, where she had spent 6 weeks with her friend,  filmmaker

Anne Wheeler, who filmed the process for an upcoming documentary about Babz’ journey.

Ben Ratner was Babz Chula’s close personal friend and colleague, and president of The Babz Chula Lifeline for

Artists Society. “Babz and her family are deeply grateful for the love and generosity the community showed her

throughout her illness. Though we have lost a true artist, friend, mentor, and matriarch, our beloved Babz will

never be forgotten.”

“She died like she lived; with dignity, grace, and humour,” says Babz’ son, Aziz, on behalf of the family. “We

thank her for being an inspiration, and she will be greatly missed and loved forever.”

Ms. Chula is survived by her husband, Larry Lynn, her children Jordana, Aviv, and Orpheo, and her

grandchildren Mason, Devon, Jake, and Kyler.

There will be a memorial service to celebrate Ms. Chula’s life on Sunday, May 23 at the Arts Club Theatre on

Granville Island. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to The Babz Chula Lifeline for

Artists Society:



Babz Chula on The Express

Celebrity Dinner: Callum Keith Rennie

On September 26th 2009, Chris Kelly and her guest Linda Bergstrom dined with Callum Keith Rennie at the BOA Steakhouse located in West Hollywood. Callum graciously donated his time for this dinner, and Chris Kelly donated more than $3400 to the Babz Chula Lifeline for Artists society for the pleasure!

Chris Kelly, Callum Keith Rennie, Linda Bergstrom

Chris Kelly, Callum Keith Rennie, Linda Bergstrom

Celebrity Dinner: Kandyse McClure and Tamoh Penikett

On May 24, 2009, Sean Koo and Marc Locquiao (Battlestar Gallactica fans), had a wonderful dinner graciously dontated by  the Regional Tasting Lounge in Yaletown with Kandyse McClure and Tamoh Penikett, and raised more than $2125 for the Babz Chula Lifeline for Artists Society. They were also joined by Society President, Ben Ratner.

24hrs May 25

Celebrity Dinner: David Duchovny and Nicholas Lea

On Saturday, May 16, 2009, Diane Renaud and her two daughters, Holly and Amy, had dinner with David Duchovny and Nicholas Lea at Tra De Noi in Malibu, California. They raised $7,600 for the Babz Chula Lifeline for Artists Society.

That night, we received this email from Diane:

I just wanted to thank you for all the help you gave me as you facilitated my dinner with David and Nick. I am very excited about tonight, and I am so glad to have the chance to actually interact with two men I’ve enjoyed watching over the past years, most specifically on X-Files. This was a fan’s lifetime-memory and I get to share it with them and with both my daughters. Thank you.

That having been said, the auction would not have been a draw for me had it not been for Ms Chula’s plight. I know that the chemo treatments she has been and will be receiving are unpleasant and very demanding on the body. I hope all is well with her, and I would love to read an update from her on her blog when she’s feeling well enough to do so. Amy and Holly and I were so happy to use some of my husband’s insurance money to help offset some of the medical costs. Her vision for Lifeline for Artists is a crucial one for all actors and artists.

I don’t know what the solution is for health care reform, but I live for the day when every person has access to the care they need at a cost that is not crippling.

Please let Ms Chula know that my thoughts will continue to be with her, that this dinner does not signal an end to the concern and care I have for her, and my hope is that she feels well and feels alive and feels energetic enough to LIVE every day she is given.

Diane Renaud (and Holly and Amy)

Diane Renaud, David Duchovny, Holly Renaud, Nick Lea,

Diane Renaud, David Duchovny, Holly Renaud, Nick Lea, Amy Renaud

First Annual BABZ Chula Event

First Annual BABZ, A Fundraising Event Benefiting Babz Chula

November 6, 2008


Live Performances by The Wet Spots, Wyckham Porteous, Steven Drake, Jim Byrnes, John Mann, Jenny Magenta, Rachael Chatoor, Laura Doyle & DJ Chris Kalhoon.

Babz, one of the most treasured matriarchal actresses in the Vancouver Film Community, is now engaged in her third battle with cancer. Babz is currently fighting two types of cancer; breast cancer that has metastasized to the liver, and a non Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, which lives in the blood. To ensure Babz has access to everything she needs to regain her health, close friends from the Canadian film industry (Ben Ratner/Moving Malcolm; Nick Lea/X-Files; Gabrielle Miller/Corner Gas and others) have banded together and formed a small charitable society, The Babz Chula Lifeline for Artists Society.

Space has been generously provided by The Caprice with additional support from the Union of B.C. Performers (UBCP), Wendy D Photography, ClubZone, Collingwood Management, Vancouver Actors Guide, Ultra Press Printing, & The Lyric School of Acting and a Special Thanks to Woody Jeffreys for event promotion.

The Society is presently focussed on raising funds to support Babz in her struggle to regain her health. It is the Society’s goal and Babz’ wishes that the Society continue on indefinitely. To support the very same community of artists who continue to give their support to her. Unfortunately though, the support we’ve received hasn’t been enough to fully cover her long-term treatments. As Babz is unable to continue with Chemotherapy, it’s of utmost importance that we meet the demand for alternative healing measures.

Click here to see photos from the event

Click here to see video from the event

Who is Babz Chula?

Reprinted from Production

Most of you by now, have met, worked with or heard of Babz Chula. Hopefully many of you have heard about the Babz Chula Lifeline for Artists Society and maybe even donated some of your hard earned cash tohelping save her quality of life, if not her life itself. For those of you who have not yet met her, this article is intended for you. And it was originally intended to be a one-on-one with the Babz herself. But as one can imagine, she’s a bit busy putting up the fight of her life, for her life, with naturopathic, chemo & Ukrain treatments.

But there’s more than one way to get to know a woman. Through her friends. And Babz has many. Many amazing, selfless, generous friends who have come together to support her in reaching two goals. One, to live. And two, to leave behind a legacy.

I intended to weave the responses I received from Ben Ratner, Bruce Ramsay, Suleka Mathew and Nick Lea into a story — A story about people coming together, creating something positive out of something bleak, the overcoming of obstacles, creating community around a cause, around Babz — until I read their replies, as their words speak for themselves.
How did you come to know Babz?

Ben: Everyone knows Babz. She’s one of those people who even if you’ve never met her, as soon as you do it feels like you already know her. She’s like a kid walking up to you on the playground saying, “Hi, I’m Babz, wanna play?” Then before recess is over she’s your new best friend.

Bruce: Love. I love Babz dearly. I’ve not known her long but have of course always seen the beauty in her. She’s the type of person who attracts others to her. I met her through Ben and I don’t even know when.

Suleka: Honestly, can’t remember. She’s one of those people if you talk to for awhile, you feel like you’ve known her your whole life.

Nick: I met Babz on a movie we did together in the late 1900’s called The Raffle. She was supportive and funny as hell.
How did you come to create/become a member of the society?

Ben: Babz has a very capable, loving husband and a supportive family, but raising the kind of funds necessary to cover her treatment is a major undertaking, and takes a whole crew. Getting started was very easy.

Suleka: As we are all her friends, we ended up getting together to discuss ideas, and within weeks, boom, the society was born.

Nick: I became a member of this society because I had to. I HAD to help. She deserves all the love and support that comes her way. We started the Society knowing that we could make a difference in Babz’s journey by trading on something that we were in contact with- recognizable people within the industry that we knew would lend a helping hand.

Bruce: Nick called me up and told me some people were getting together to help Babz. And I said, without pause. In.

Ben: The challenge now is keeping things running smoothly and professionally, so the dough can keep coming in, and everyone who contributes has a good time doing so. Although most of us don’t have experience with running charitable organizations, we reached out to experienced people and they guided us through every step. At our second meeting I got up to go to the bathroom, and when I came back three minutes later I was told they had voted me in as President of The Babz Chula Lifeline For Artists Society. It’s a great honour to have my friends’ trust me enough to have me represent us and what we’re doing. Nick Lea was made Vice President, but he insists on being referred to as “Mr. Senior Vice President.”
What are you aiming to accomplish in the short term? Long term?

Nick: We are trying, firstly, to accumulate enough funds to cover Babz’s VERY expensive treatment costs. Because her specific treatment is not covered by BC Med, she is essentially left to her own devices to pay for it. Medical will only pay for Chemotherapy.

Ben: Long term — all of us like the idea of this organization being on-going, something that can aide other artists who find themselves in serious medical crisis with nowhere to turn. But first, we have to focus on financing Babz healing process, and that alone is a huge challenge. Babz wants this to be her legacy, and we’re all determined to see that happen.
What kind of response have you received so far? From those offering auction items to those bidding, donating and visiting the site, sharing their stories?

Ben: Overwhelming. Inspiring. Uplifting.

Suleka: We’ve spent so much time in the past few months working out details of the auction, the website, the release to the press, I must admit, we had no idea of the huge wave of offers that came from all around the community of different fundraising ideas. So as we marvel about this generosity, we are starting to look at these new ideas and figure out how best to incorporate them.

Ben: Just read the message board and you can see how much one person’s journey can effect others’ lives and give them hope. Most of the stuff on the site has bids already, and the whole community has come forward offering their time, their wares, and their talents.
If you had to choose only one moment/memory of/with Babz to define your love for and friendship with her, what would that moment be?

Ben: It’s her laugh. She’s got a giggle that’s equal parts mischievous little girl, hippy stoner, and wise old lady. The thought of a world without that laugh is something it’s way too soon to imagine.

Suleka: I had the privilege of dressing her in her sari for her very beautiful wedding to darling Larry. Having those couple hours with her, talking, laughing and being quiet with her while negotiating five yards of cream silk around her on a truly significant day felt like a high honor.

Nick: When I see Babz at our dining room table during our strategy meetings for the Society, she is burned out and beat down not only by the burden of her disease but by the energy that she is robbed of her during her treatments and she still makes me laugh my ass off.

Check out to find out more about Babz, her fight, her friends, the online, the donations, the blog, the facebook…


Paul McGillion & Jewel Staite Celebrity Dinner

Paul McGillion, Jewel Staite and CinCin help Babz Chula, one of Canada’s most accomplished actors, in her fight to regain her health.


Corey Brookes, Jewel Staite, Sean Koo, Paul McGillion

On Wednesday, September 24, 2008, Paul McGillion (Stargate Atlantis, Star Trek, Cold Squad) and Jewel Staite (Stargate Atlantis, Da Vinci’s Inquest ) dined at the courtesy of acclaimed Vancouver restaurant, CinCin, with Celebrity Auction winners & Vancouver locals, Sean Koo and Corey Brookes.

Paul McGillion & Jewel Staite kindly donated their time and celebrity to the eBay auction block in April 2008 to raise over $1600 towards Babz Chula. Babz, in her third battle against cancer, has exhausted the conventional medical treatments supported through MSP. With the kindness and generosity of others, Babz is able to continue her fight for good health through alternative treatments.

The Paul McGillion & Jewel Staite dinner is the second in a series of Celebrity Dinners held at CinCin. The first celebrity auctioned dinner also took place at CinCin with musician Mathew Good. It is with thanks to CinCin’s continuously generous support that all monies raised from these dinners go directly to Babz’ ongoing treatments.

Other Celebrity Dinners on the auction table include; dinners with David Duchovny and Nicholas Lea (Californication, X Files), Chris Carter (X Files), Callum Keith Rennie (Normal, The X-Files: I want to Believe), Gabrielle Miller and John Cassini (Corner Gas, Robson Arms), Tahmoh Penikett and Kandyse McClure (Battlestar Galactica).

Says Ben Ratner, friend and President of the Babz Chula Lifeline for Artists Society, “Babz is continuing to fight the fight and living every day to the fullest. She’s indescribably grateful for the kindness and generosity that has come her way.”

The Babz Chula Lifeline for Artists Society continue to gratefully accept donations to help Babz through their website at

Celebrity Dinner: Matthew Good

Matthew Good & CinCin help Babz Chula, one of Canada’s most accomplished actors, in her fight for a life without cancer.

On Saturday, August 9, 2008, Matthew Good dined at the acclaimed Vancouver restaurant, CinCin with his Celebrity Auction winner.

CinCin generously provided the meal which included suggested wine pairings. Matthew Good and his guest, Stella, enjoyed CinCin’s Green Asparagus Soup & 1 year Aged Biodynamic Risotto of Sweet Pea with Mint.

Matt Stella

Matthew Good with celebrity dinner winner, Stella. Photo Credit: Dean Buscher

Canadian musician and local Vancouverite, Matthew Good, has just completed the Canadian leg of the Matthew Good and his Band tour following the 2007 release of his 11th album, Hospital Music. Matthew will continue the tour August 29th at Club Infinity in Buffalo, NY.

The Matthew Good dinner is the first in a long time of Celebrity Dinners auctioned to raise money for Babz Chula’s treatments. The Babz Chula Lifeline for Artists Society held the Celebrity Auction on eBay, April 2008. A large component of the auction included Celebrity Dinners. The winning bid for Matthew Good’s dinner helped to raise over $2000.00. The total value of the dinner is in excess of $2500 with special thanks to the Top Table Group and CinCin.

Other Celebrity Dinners on the auction table included; dinners with David Duchovny and Nicholas Lea (Californication, X Files), Chris Carter (X Files), Callum Keith Rennie (Normal, The X-Files: I want to believe), Gabrielle Miller and John Cassini (Corner Gas, Robson Arms), Paul McGillian and Jewel Staite (Stargate Atlantis),Tahmoh Penikett and Kandyse McClure (Battlestar Galactica).

Chula’s breast cancer has recurred and spread to her liver, and she now finds herself in a very rare and challenging situation. Says Dr. Lemmo, her naturopathic oncologist, “this is a chronic disease but overall, Babz is doing remarkably well. That’s because of her determination, commitment to healing, the support of her integrative team, and the benefits she has shown from naturopathic cancer care. She represents an individual treatment plan, pioneering a new framework for cancer care. Because her case is so unique, we need to explore new methods of care and treatment.”

Chula is revered as a generous mentor to young artists and a tireless volunteer to countless charity causes. Now, facing two types of cancer, she once again needs our help to stay alive and continue to give back to the community that has so warmly supported her in the past. Says Chula, “True healing begins with gestures of generosity and actions that we take to alleviate the suffering of others. My hopes for the future include using my energy to support other artists facing similar challenges to mine. I’d like to collect and organize all the information and revelation that I’ve experienced on this journey and get it out to others in a comprehensive fashion.”

Actors Hold Charity eBay Auction for Actress Babz Chula


Babz Chula is an award-winning Canadian actress and crucial presence in Vancouver’s independent film scene. She is also a cancer survivor who recently discovered that her breast cancer, that was thought to have been defeated, has traveled to her liver. In the face of increasing medical bills, a group of Canadian actors have formed the Babz Chula Lifeline for Artists Society.

The Society, whose members include Nicholas Lea, Suleka Mathew, Gabrielle Miller and Ben Ratner, will conduct an eBay auction April 2 though April 12 to raise funds for Chula’s medical fees. Up for bid will be dinners with actors such as David Duchovny, Nicholas Lea, Chris Carter, Callum, Keith Rennie and Peter DeLuise as well as collectible movie memorabilia including an autographed slate from the upcoming “X-Files” movie and original shooting scripts for the Burt Lancaster film Atlantic City and the Robert Altman flick Quintet.

The Society is looking to raise $250,000 for Chula’s treatment, which, in addition to traditional chemotherapy, will include naturopathic treatment that is not covered by her health insurance. Throughout her treatment Chula plans to maintain a blog, which she has already used to introduce visitors to the cause and detail her situation with extraordinary grace and honesty. In addition to the auction, the Society is also accepting donations.

More for information on how to donate visit


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