Hot Docs Forum Wraps - $10K Canadian Forum Pitch Prize Awarded to Wilfred Buck

The Hot Docs Forum, our key international co-financing market event, has wrapped after two successful days of pitching. The Forum saw a total of 20 projects representing 16 countries, with women representing 20 of the 25 directors and 36 of the 58 producers, pitched to a virtual roundtable of more than 50 key funders and decision makers, as well as filmmakers and prize juries.

Registered All-Access Online Pass holders can watch a selection of Hot Docs Forum pitches and feedback on the Swapcard event platform. Log in now >>

“We are deeply humbled by the success of this year’s Forum,” said Lisa Valencia-Svensson, acting industry programs director. “Thanks to the tenacious filmmakers and bold decision makers who made the 22nd edition—and our second annual online event—a huge success!”

“While we were not expecting to mount another edition while physically disconnected from our international documentary community, we are tremendously inspired by the artists who persevered in finding creative approaches to filmmaking,” said Dorota Lech, Hot Docs industry programmer and Forum producer. “Congratulations to all the filmmakers—we are in awe of your perseverance!”

The Canadian Forum Pitch Prize, presented in partnership with DGC National and DGC Ontario, was awarded to Wilfred Buck (D: Lisa Jackson; P: Lisa Jackson, Alicia Smith; Door Number 3 Productions, NFB, Canada), which follows a man who has been called the Indiana Jones of Indigenous star knowledge, weaving his harrowing past and present to explore colonization’s impact on Indigenous ways of knowing. The $10,000 CAD cash prize is awarded to the best Canadian pitch at the Forum as voted on by attending international buyers.

This year, the jury gave an honourable mention, with a $2,000 CAD cash prize, to Made in Ethiopia (D: Xinyan Yu, Max Duncan; P: Tamara Dawit, Xinyan Yu, Max Duncan; Made in Ethiopia, LLC, USA; Gobez Media Inc, Canada), which tells the story of three trailblazing women who navigate the bumpy expansion of the biggest Chinese industrial park in Ethiopia.

The winners of the first look Pitch Prize and $110,000 in cash awards, along with the recipient of the SunnySide of the Doc Pitch Prize, will be announced on May 10.

Curated one-on-one pitch meetings arranged through Hot Docs Deal Maker and Distribution Rendezvous programs continue throughout the month.

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