Hot Docs Wraps 2021 Edition, $244K Awarded to Festival Films & Projects

Hot Docs has wrapped its 28th annual Festival, which was presented online from April 29 to May 9 to audiences across Canada. The 11-day event streamed 222 films from 66 countries, 129 recorded filmmaker Q&As, five Curious Minds events centered on film topics, and 11 live events, including a Q&A for opening night selection A.rtificial I.mmortality with director Ann Shin and guest subject Dr. Deepak Chopra, five Big Ideas discussions presented by Scotia Wealth Management, four NFB-hosted filmmaker Q&As, and a livestream of a special keynote interview with Questlove on his film Summer Of Soul (…Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised).

During the Festival, over $244,000 CND in cash and prizes was awarded to Festival films in competition, the industry pitches, and audience award winners (below).

During a special livestream on Sunday evening, the winners of the Rogers Audience Award were announced. Honouring the top five Canadian feature documentaries as determined by audience poll, each winning film this year came from a different Canadian province. Each coming from a different province, the winners are: FANNY: The Right to Rock (Quebec), Kímmapiiyipitssini: The Meaning of Empathy (Alberta), Someone Like Me (British Columbia), Still Max (Ontario), and Hell or Clean Water (Newfoundland). Each film’s director will receive a cash prize of $10,000 CDN.

At the close of audience voting, it was determined Dear Future Children received the highest overall rating and won the Hot Docs Audience Award, while the top short documentary was A Concerto Is a Conversation and the top mid-length film was Spirit to Soar.

Check out the full list of Top 20 audience picks.

Hot Docs’ popular Docs For Schools education program was also presented during the Festival, offered a selection of Festival and other documentaries for free to 363 schools in Ontario and other provinces. After student votes were tallied, With Drawn Arms (D: Glenn Kaino, Afshin Shahidi; P: Glenn Zipper, Sean Stuart, Glenn Kaino, Afshin Shahidi;USA, Mexico), was named the winner of the Scotiabank Docs For Schools Student Choice Award. The award comes with a $5,000 CDN cash prize, courtesy of Scotiabank.

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