Media Room


Toronto, February 15, 2012 – Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival and Blue Ice Group are pleased to announce that the newly renovated Bloor Hot Docs Cinema will have its grand opening on Wednesday, March 14, amidst a celebratory week of special screenings and events for both the general public and invited guests.

“This partnership is a game-changer for Hot Docs and great news for Toronto’s film lovers,” says Chris McDonald, executive director of Hot Docs. “Investors were anxious to purchase and develop the property but the Bordonaro family was determined to leave the Bloor in cinema-loving hands. Hot Docs and Blue Ice are anxious to meet this challenge. In an era where arts and culture are at risk of funding cuts and indifference from some quarters, this is one of Toronto’s good news stories of the year. We are thrilled.”

“Toronto has amazing film audiences, many of whom make up Hot Docs’ enormous community of documentary fans,” says Blue Ice Group principal Neil Tabatznik. “We are happy that this partnership will rejuvenate the Bloor as a home for docs, where Toronto’s film-lovers will have the chance to experience incredible stories year-round.”

The grand opening on March 14 will offer invited guests a secret sneak peek at an exciting new film premiering at this year’s Hot Docs Festival, April 26 - May 6. It will be followed on Thursday, March 15, by special screenings of a classic documentary for invited Hot Docs friends, colleagues, and supporters.

Prior to the grand opening, the public are invited to experience the new cinema at two free open-house screenings of Hot Docs 2010 hit WASTE LAND (D: Lucy Walker; UK, Brazil; 2010) on Monday, March 12, and Tuesday, March 13, at 7:00 p.m. A multiple award winner, WASTE LAND follows acclaimed visual artist Vik Muniz and his remarkable work with pickers at the world’s largest landfill site in Brazil.

The Cinema’s scheduled public programming commences on Friday, March 16, with screenings of BEING ELMO: A PUPPETEER’S JOURNEY (D: Constance Marks, USA, 2011), the heart-warming story of Kevin Clash, the shy puppeteer behind everyone’s favourite Muppet; and the Toronto premiere of CORMAN’S WORLD: THE EXPLOITS OF A HOLLYWOOD REBEL (D: Alex Stapleton, USA, 2011), a star-studded tribute to Hollywood’s most prolific writer-director-producer and his cult-film empire. Both films begin their limited theatrical engagements at the cinema.

The opening of the Bloor Hot Docs Cinema marks a new chapter in the much-loved, century-old film house located in Toronto’s Annex neighbourhood. Toronto-based film company Blue Ice Group purchased the independent repertory cinema in June of 2011 when it was under threat of closure and redevelopment. Under renovation for the past seven months, architects Hariri Pontarini have enhanced the building’s accessibility and atmosphere while respecting its grandeur and architectural details. Finding inspiration in the venue’s past incarnations, the expanded lobby will feature a large, transparent wall enabling an open view from the street into the auditorium, and the refreshed facade will feature a marquee with a large, vertical sign rising along the front of the building. Additional improvements include new plush seating, expanded washroom facilities, a larger screen, and state-of-the-art projection and sound equipment.

An open house for media is tentatively scheduled for late February/early March. Interested members of the media can be in touch with V. Kelly and Associates to receive an update once a date is confirmed.


Hot Docs (, North America’s largest documentary festival, conference and market, will present its 19th annual edition from April 26 – May 6, 2012. An outstanding selection of 150+ documentaries from Canada and around the world will be presented to Toronto audiences and international delegates. Hot Docs will also mount a full roster of conference sessions and market events and services for documentary practitioners, including the renowned Hot Docs Forum and The Doc Shop.

The Bloor Hot Docs Cinema ( is an historic, century-old cinema located in Toronto’s vibrant Annex neighbourhood. Operated and programmed by Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival, the 727-seat venue is a year-round home for first-run Canadian and international documentaries, as well as special documentary presentations and showcases, including the popular Doc Soup screening series. Continuing its longstanding role as a community cinema, it also hosts many of the city’s independent film festivals and offers audiences some repertory and specialized fiction film programming. The Bloor Hot Docs Cinema is a joint Blue Ice Group-Hot Docs project.

Media Contact for Hot Docs:
Virginia Kelly
V Kelly & Associates
Phone: 416-466-9799

Media Contact for Bloor Hot Docs Cinema:
Heather Belot
Marketing and Communications Manager
Bloor Hot Docs Cinema
Phone: 416-203-2155 ext. 284

The Bloor Hot Docs Cinema

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