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Hot Docs for the Holidays - Hot Gift Ideas

Find the perfect gift for the doc lover on your list. Avoid crowded malls and long lines while supporting Hot Docs and the Bloor Hot Docs Cinema.

Passes and packages for the 2015 Festival are now on sale, with two amazing passes and four incredible ticket packs to choose from. BUY EARLY AND SAVE

We also have many other ways you can give the gift of docs, including:

  • New Bloor Hot Docs Cinema Memberships: Choose from our new bronze, silver and gold memberships, each with special discounts and exclusive benefits tailored just for you.
  • Bloor Hot Docs Cinema Gift Cards and Certificates: Redeemable for tickets, memberships, merchandise and concessions at the Bloor Hot Docs Cinema.
  • Hot Docs Merchadise: Bring Hot Docs home with you with our great selection of Criterion Collection and Festival hits on DVD, as well as commemorative t-shirts, coffee mugs, notebooks, bike bells and water bottles.

   Posted: Thu, December 18, 2014 - 4:20 | #

Keep Hot Docs in Your Heart This Holiday Season

Hot Docs is a charitable, not-for-profit organization committed to advancing the art of documentary, and to supporting creative development, financing and distribution opportunities for independent filmmakers. Hot Docs issues full tax receipts for donations $25 and over.


   Posted: Thu, December 18, 2014 - 4:15 | #

Hot Docs and Shaw Media Launch New Diverse Voices Training Program

Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival and Shaw Media are pleased to announce the Shaw Media Diverse Voices Program, which will provide six to eight emerging Canadian filmmakers of diverse backgrounds with training in documentary and factual television production.

Taking place during the 2015 Hot Docs Festival, the program will guide participants through an intensive training module and seminar series, career management workshops, and networking events with industry professionals.

Applications are now open, with a final deadline of January 26, 2015.


   Posted: Thu, December 18, 2014 - 4:10 | #

Hot Docs-Blue Ice Group Fund Grants $118,000 to African Film Projects

Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival and Blue Ice Group are pleased to announce that nine African film projects have been chosen to receive a total of $118,000 in development, production and completion grants from the Hot Docs-Blue Ice Group Documentary Fund in its fourth round of disbursements. Four projects will receive development grants, three projects will receive production grants, and two projects will receive special completion grants, all selected from 75 submissions from 19 different African countries. Development and production grant recipients will also receive support to attend Hot Docs 2015, where they will take part in a creative filmmakers’ lab, attend Hot Docs screenings, conference sessions, the Hot Docs Forum and various networking events, and participate in a year-round peer-to-peer mentorship program. They will also receive support to attend and participate in the Durban International Film Festival and Durban Film Market.

The $1-million Hot Docs-Blue Ice Group Documentary Fund was created in 2011 to help enable more African documentary filmmakers to tell their own stories, and contribute to the African documentary community’s next generation. To date, the Hot Docs-Blue Ice Group Documentary Fund has awarded a total of $501,000 to 32 projects.

Applications for the next round of disbursements will open in June 2015 and close in August 2015.


   Posted: Thu, December 18, 2014 - 4:05 | #

THE ENEMY WITHIN at January’s Doc Soup Toronto

January’s Doc Soup will present the international premiere of THE ENEMY WITHIN. Winner of the Audience Award at the 2014 Sheffield Doc/Fest, THE ENEMY WITHIN weaves together the powerful and raw first-hand stories of coal miners and supporters who spent a year on the frontline of the 1984-85 British Miners’ Strike and changed the shape of history forever.

THE ENEMY WITHIN will screen at the Bloor Hot Docs Cinema on Wednesday, January 7, at 6:30 p.m. and 9:15 p.m., and Thursday, January 8, at 6:45 p.m. Director Owen Gower will be in attendance to introduce the film and answer questions following the screenings.


   Posted: Mon, December 08, 2014 - 1:50 | #

KEEP ON KEEPIN’ ON at January’s Doc Soup Calgary

January’s Doc Soup Calgary will feature KEEP ON KEEPIN’ ON, the powerful story of jazz legend Clark Terry’s mentorship of piano prodigy Justin Kauflin that celebrates the wonder of music, perseverance and friendship.

The film will screen at 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday, January 7, at the The Globe Cinema, 617 8 Avenue Southwest.
Learn more >>

   Posted: Mon, December 08, 2014 - 1:45 | #

Eight Hot Docs Alumni Make Oscar Shortlist

Hot Docs Forum alumnus FINDING VIVIAN MAIER and seven Hot Docs 2014 Official Selections, including ART AND CRAFT, THE CASE AGAINST 8, KEEP ON KEEPIN’ ON, THE KILL TEAM, THE OVERNIGHTERS, VIRUNGA and 2014 opening night film THE INTERNET’S OWN BOY, have been shortlisted for the Academy Award® for Best Documentary Feature.

   Posted: Mon, December 08, 2014 - 1:35 | #

Submit a Film to Hot Docs 2015 Festival

Hot Docs is now accepting submissions for the 2015 Festival! Newly revised submission guidelines and FAQs are available online.

Late Deadline: January 7, 2015


   Posted: Mon, December 08, 2014 - 1:25 | #

Submit a Project to the 2015 Hot Docs Forum

Submissions are now open for the 2015 Hot Docs Forum. Regarded as the most effective international documentary market in North America, the Hot Docs Forum is a dynamic pitching event that stimulates international co-production financing for projects at various levels of completion. This year’s Forum takes place April 29 and 30, during the Hot Docs Festival, April 23 to May 3.

Deadline: January 12, 2015


   Posted: Mon, December 08, 2014 - 1:20 | #

Hot Docs 2015 Made In Program to Showcase India

Hot Docs is pleased to announce that it will feature films from India in its Made In program at the 2015 Festival, April 23 to May 3. Each year the Made In program celebrates a country or region’s contribution to documentary, offering revealing glimpses into the social, political, economic and cultural issues facing those societies. The 2015 Made In India program will highlight the remarkable work and incredible cinematic legacy from the Indian documentary community. Film titles in this program will be announced in March.

In preparation for Made In India, Hot Docs president Chris McDonald will join the OMDC and Telefilm Canada delegation at the Film Bazaar and the International Film Festival of India (IFFI) in Goa, and looks forward to forging new relationships and building foundations for future collaboration with the Indian film industry.

   Posted: Mon, December 08, 2014 - 1:15 | #

documentary Channel Free November Preview

Penis Museum. Beckham. Identical Twins. Terrorism. Don’t miss these stories and more on the documentary Channel, FREE for the month of November!


   Posted: Tue, November 11, 2014 - 9:20 | #

Hot Docs Presents Learning from Documentary Audiences Study at RIDM

Hot Docs is pleased to release a French-language version of Learning from Documentary Audiences: A Market Research Study, a major survey of documentary viewing habits in Canada supported by the Ontario Media Development Corporation (OMDC), Telefilm Canada, the National Film Board (NFB) and the Canada Media Fund (CMF).

The study will be presented by Hot Docs industry programs director Elizabeth Radshaw on Wednesday, November 19, at the Coffee With Hot Docs: Audience Report session at RIDM. The presentation will focus on how the results of the study impact the French-language market.

The English-language version of the study was presented at the 2014 TIFF Doc Conference.


   Posted: Mon, November 10, 2014 - 10:25 | #

2015 Outstanding Achievement and Focus On Honourees Announced

The Hot Docs Board of Directors is pleased to announce that it has chosen masterful Chilean documentary filmmaker Patricio Guzmán as the recipient of its 2015 Outstanding Achievement Award. As part of the honour, Hot Docs will screen a retrospective during the 22nd annual Festival, April 23 to May 3, celebrating Guzmán’s distinguished career as a director and writer. Hot Docs will also pay tribute to Canadian filmmaker Carole Laganière, subject of this year’s Focus On retrospective.

Patricio Guzmán was born in 1941 in Santiago, Chile, and studied filmmaking at the Film Institute at the Catholic University of Chile, and at the Official School of Film in Madrid. Guzmán has worked on over 20 films, which are regularly selected and awarded prizes at international festivals, throughout a career spanning more than 40 years. His most recent feature-length film NOSTALGIA FOR THE LIGHT (2010) won Best Documentary at the 2010 European Film Awards, Best Feature at the 2011 International Documentary Association Awards, Best Documentary at the Toronto Film Critics Association Awards in 2012, and was nominated for the 2012 Writers Guild of America Best Documentary Screenplay Award and the 2013 Best Documentary Emmy. Guzmán’s credits as director include THE BATTLE OF CHILE (1975-79), winner of six grand prizes in Europe and Latin America and declared one of the 10 best political films in the world by Cineaste; IN GOD’S NAME (1987), winner of the Grand Prize, Festival dei Popoli; THE SOUTHERN CROSS (1992), winner of the Grand Prize, Marseille International Festival of Documentary Film; CHILE, OBSTINATE MEMORY (1999); THE PINOCHET CASE (2001), winner of the Grand Prize, Marseille International Festival of Documentary Film; SALVADOR ALLENDE (2004); and MY JULES VERNE (2005). Guzmán currently chairs the International Documentary Film Festival (FIDOCS) in Santiago, Chile, which he founded in 1997.

Hot Docs will also pay tribute to Carole Laganière with this year’s Focus On retrospective, an annual program showcasing the work of a mid-career Canadian filmmaker. After directing prize-winning fiction films such as JOUR DE CONGÉ (1989) and ALINE (1992), Carole Laganière dedicated herself to documentary, a genre that allows her to combine her social and artistic concerns. She won two consecutive Best Canadian Feature Documentary awards at Hot Docs: THE FIANCÉE OF LIFE (2002) and THE MOON AND THE VIOLIN (2003). Her credits as director include EAST END KIDS (2004); COUNTRY (2006), an official selection at Hot Docs; EAST END FOREVER (2010); and ABSENCES (2014), which was directed during Laganière’s two years in the National Film Board’s Filmmaker-in-Residence program and was an official selection of Hot Docs 2014.

Films in the 2015 Outstanding Achievement Award Retrospective and Focus On Carole Laganière programs will be announced in March. Industry registration will open in January 2015.

   Posted: Mon, November 10, 2014 - 10:20 | #

Wrongfully Imprisoned Subject of Hot Docs Hit DAVID & ME Freed!

The Hot Docs team is elated by the recent news of David McCallum’s release from prison after being wrongly convicted and held for almost 30 years. Toronto audiences may know of David’s story from the heartrending film David & Me, which received its world premiere at the 2014 Hot Docs Festival and which was supported by the Shaw Media-Hot Docs Documentary Fund.

David & Me was one part of a larger team effort, championed by Rubin ‘Hurricane’ Carter, to secure David’s release. Directors Ray Klonsky—whose relationship with David inspired the film—and Ray’s friend Marc Lamy laboured for nearly a decade on the cause and the documentary. During filming, they worked closely with a private investigator hired by Toronto-based Markham Street Films to seek new evidence in the case, which was eventually uncovered, turned over to the Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office and became part of a larger case file that helped determine David and his co-accused’s innocence.

David & Me was embraced by Hot Docs audiences, who voted it into the top 15 favourites at the Festival, and was screened for hundreds of students as part of the Docs for Schools program.

Hot Docs applauds the producers, filmmakers and David’s legal team and advocates who worked tirelessly to tell his story, uncover the truth and right this terrible wrong.

Support the filmmakers’ campaign to help David’s transition to life as a free man.

   Posted: Mon, November 10, 2014 - 10:20 | #

Hot Docs Showcase at Windsor International Film Festival This Week

The Windsor International Film Festival (WIFF) has teamed up with Hot Docs to present an outstanding selection of Hot Docs Showcase films at WIFF 2014, running November 1 to 9. The program features 12 unique and provocative films that were selected for Windsor audiences by Hot Docs president Chris McDonald who will be in attendance at the festival.

The films include:

  • ADVANCED STYLE (D: Lina Plioplyte | USA | 2014)
  • BEFORE THE LAST CURTAIN FALLS (D: Thomas Wallner | Belguim, Canada, Germany | 2014)
  • BRONX OBAMA (D: Ryan Murdock | USA | 2014)
  • HARMONTOWN (D: Neil Berkeley | USA | 2014)
  • LOVE ME (D: Jonathon Narducci | USA, Ukraine | 2014)
  • POINT AND SHOOT (D: Marshall Curry | USA, Canada, 2014)
  • WRITE DOWN, I AM AN ARAB (D: Ibtisam Mara’ana-Menuhin | Israel, Palestine | 2014)
  • THE BACKWARD CLASS (D: Madeleine Grant | Canada, India | 2014)
  • THE BEIJING ANTS (D: Ryuji Otsuka | China | 2014)
  • THE STARFISH THROWERS (D: Jesse Roesler | USA, India | 2014)
  • VESSEL (D: Diana Whitten | USA | 2014)


   Posted: Mon, November 10, 2014 - 10:15 | #

Hot Docs Releases Learning from Documentary Audiences Study

Hot Docs is pleased to release Learning from Documentary Audiences: A Market Research Study, a major survey of documentary viewing habits in Canada supported by the Ontario Media Development Corporation (OMDC), Telefilm Canada, the National Film Board (NFB) and the Canada Media Fund (CMF).

Drawn from thousands of completed questionnaires and a five-city focus group tour, results of the study were presented at the 2014 TIFF Doc Conference by Hot Docs industry programs director Elizabeth Radshaw.


   Posted: Tue, November 04, 2014 - 9:20 | #

Congratulations to Hot Docs Alumni at IDFA

Congratulations to the recent Hot Docs Forum and Deal Maker alumni, and Shaw Media-Hot Docs Funds and Hot Docs-Blue Ice Group Documentary Fund recipients screening at this year’s International Documentary Festival Amsterdam (IDFA) from November 19 to 30. Projects include CHAMELEON (2013 Hot Docs Forum and 2013 Shaw Media-Hot Docs Funds Completion Fund), MOTHER OF THE UNBORN (2013 Hot Docs Deal Maker and 2012 Hot Docs-Blue Ice Group Documentary Fund Development Grant), and THE SHORE BREAK (2013 Hot Docs Deal Maker and 2013 Hot Docs-Blue Ice Group Documentary Fund Completion Grant).

   Posted: Tue, November 04, 2014 - 9:10 | #

Hot Docs Welcomes Bell Media’s Scott Henderson to its Board

Hot Docs is pleased to welcome Scott Henderson, Vice-President, Communications for Bell Media, to the organization’s Board of Directors.

About Scott Henderson

As Vice-President, Communications, Scott Henderson leads the strategic, day-to-day operations of program and talent publicity, corporate communications, public affairs, community investment, and special events for Bell Media.

Henderson is responsible for all communications efforts for the company’s two conventional networks, CTV and CTV Two; Bell Media’s stable of entertainment, factual, sports, news, specialty and pay channels; as well as the company’s radio stations, digital properties, and Out-of-Home division.

A 16-year veteran of the company, Henderson began his career at The Comedy Network (now Comedy) shortly after its launch. He became Director, Communications in 2004 and Vice-President, Communications in 2007. An industry trailblazer and advocate for strategic and fulsome communication strategies surrounding original Canadian content, he has overseen the publicity campaigns for some of the Canada’s most-watched and successful original programs, including CORNER GAS, CANADIAN IDOL, FLASHPOINT, THE JUNO AWARDS, MUCH MUSIC VIDEO AWARDS, DEGRASSI, SAVING HOPE, and, most recently, ORPHAN BLACK, MASTERCHEF CANADA, BITTEN, and THE AMAZING RACE CANADA.

See the full Board of Directors.

   Posted: Wed, October 29, 2014 - 4:05 | #

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   Posted: Wed, October 29, 2014 - 4:00 | #

Films Announced for Hot Docs Showcase 2014-15 Season

Hot Docs is pleased to announce the 2014-15 season of Hot Docs Showcase, a program that offers independent cinemas, film societies, student associations, museums, libraries and other non-traditional screening venues across Ontario access to a catalogue of recent, high-quality Canadian and international documentary films. The 18 films specially selected by Hot Docs offer audiences unique viewing experiences through engaging and provocative true-life stories from around the globe.


   Posted: Mon, September 29, 2014 - 1:25 | #

Hot Docs Hits VIFF

Hot Docs senior Canadian programmer Lynne Fernie will be in attendance at the Vancouver International Film Festival, September 25 - October 10. While there she will serve as a member of the Impact Award jury.

   Posted: Wed, September 24, 2014 - 10:00 | #

Friend of Hot Docs: Create a Doritos Ad for a Chance to Win $1,000,000 US

Create a 30-second Doritos commercial to Crash the Super Bowl. You could win $1,000,000 (US), see your ad air during the Super Bowl broadcast, and score a dream job with Universal Pictures in Hollywood. Head to to get started!

   Posted: Tue, September 23, 2014 - 11:40 | #

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