GAT at HOT DOCS 2017

GAT at Hot Docs – April 27 – May 7, 2017



Representing Blue Ice Docs, Coast to Coast Films, DesignLand, EyeSteel Film, KinoSmith, Fathom Film Group, and H2L Productions.


78/52 – Directed by Alexandre O. Philippe

Canadian Premiere – Nightvision – USA  |  Distributor, KINOSMITH

From the mind of director Alexandre O. Phillippe (Doc of the Dead) 78/52 takes an unprecedented look at the iconic shower scene in Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho, the “man behind the curtain”, and the screen murder that profoundly changed the course of world cinema. With commentary from all ends of Hollywood, including Guillermo del Toro, Danny Elfman, Jamie Lee Curtis, and Elijah Wood, as well as a cadre of sound editors, musicians, and Marli Renfro (Janet Leigh’s Playboy Bunny body double), this doc takes viewers deep into the making of film’s most legendary death.

Attending Hot Docs: Director Alexandre O. Philippe
Clip: Melons:

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Date Time Venue
Thu, May 4 9:30 PM Ted Rogers Hot Docs Cinema
Fri, May 5 3:00 PM Scotiabank, Cinema 13


A CAMBODIAN SPRING – Directed by Chris Kelly

World Premiere – International Spectrum –  United Kingdom  – EYESTEEL FILM

An intimate and unique portrait of three people caught up in the chaotic and often violent development that is shaping modern-day Cambodia. Shot over six years, the film charts the growing wave of land-rights protests that led to the ‘Cambodian spring’ and the tragic events that followed. This film is about the complexities – both political and personal, of fighting for what you believe in.

Attending Hot Docs: Director Chris Kelly, Subject Venerable Loun Sovath

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Date Time Venue
Wed, May 3 6:00 PM Scotiabank Theatre, Cinema 3
Thu, May 4 12:30 PM HART HOUSE Theatre
Sun, May 7 6:15 PM Toronto Centre for the Arts


ASK THE SEXPERT – Directed by Vaishali Sinha

World Premiere – Singular Sensation(s) – USA  – H2L

A story of a highly popular sex columnist for a daily newspaper in India. Despite sex being a taboo topic in that country, the column’s brand of non-moralistic advice and humor has emboldened many to write in with their questions, the vast majority of whom seek basic information. The columnist gains popularity even while a ban on comprehensive sex education in schools is adopted by approximately a third of India’s states.

Attending Hot Docs: Director Vaishali Sinha, Producer Mridu Chandra  –  COAST TO COAST FILMS


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Date Time Venue
Mon, May 1 9:00 PM TIFF Bell Lightbox 2
Tue, May 2 4:30 PM TIFF Bell Lightbox 1
Wed, May 3 3:00 PM TIFF Bell Lightbox 1


DO DONKEYS ACT – Directed by Ashley Sabin and David Redmon

North American Premiere – World Showcase – United Kingdom/Canada/Ireland/United States   –  Distributor BLUE ICE DOCS

Do Donkeys Act’s ethno-poetic-animal-fiction takes its playfully self-reflexive cues from Jean Rouch and Chris Marker. Encouraging us to respect a major language barrier we might not otherwise consider––the mystery and intrigue of donkey utterances––DO DONKEYS ACT invites us to “step into their shade, listen closely” as we attune to a series of dramatic performances in which we eavesdrop on donkeys speaking amongst themselves. Reclaiming the donkey from the indignity of a centuries old master slave relationship in which the dominant image of the donkey has been negative (stubborn, buffoon, jackass, laborer, trickster and fool), DO DONKEYS ACT elevates a denigrated and degraded beast to the role of lead actor and performance artist. To paraphrase Marina Abramovic, the donkey is present. Narrated by Willem Dafoe.

Attending Hot Docs: Co Director David Redmon


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Date Time Venue
Thu Apr 27 7:00 PM TIFF Bell Lightbox 4
Fri Apr 28 3:30 PM TIFF Bell Lightbox 3
Sun May 7 8:30 PM Scotiabank, Cinema 7

Directed by Joseph Clement

World Premiere – Canadian Spectrum – Canada – DESIGNLAND

Jim Stewart is the most published mathematician since Euclid, a man of unparalleled ambition. He set out to create one of the most renowned pieces of residential architecture in North America and succeeded.

Unbeknownst to Jim however, an unexpected turn of events is set to unfold.

Attending Hot Docs: Director Joseph Clement

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Date Time Venue
Tue, May 2 7:15 PM Isabel Bader Theatre
Wed, May 3 10:00 AM TIFF Bell Lightbox 1
Fri, May 5 4:30 PM Fox Theatre

– Directed by Mila Aung-Thwin & Van Royko

Canadian Premiere  – Canadian Spectrum – Canada/France/Italy/Switzerland/USA  –  EYESTEEL FILM

Can mankind create a small sun on Earth?

Clean, safe and unlimited power has been an obsession for scientists and inventors for centuries, and an underlying preoccupation for our society as a whole. For decades, fusion has been delayed and thwarted by failure, miscalculation, fraud and politics. But today, fusion is being pursued with a renewed zeal, mostly because we’ve never needed it like we do now. 37 countries are currently collaborating to build the biggest experiment ever, in order to prove that fusion is viable. Will we finally succeed, or will the project collapse under its own massive complexity? The film chronicles the work of the passionate scientists who are struggling to make it work.

Attending Hot Docs: Director Mila Aung-Thwin


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Date Time Venue
Fri, Apr 28 9:30 PM HART HOUSE Theatre
Sat, Apr 29 10:00 AM Scotiabank, Cinema 3
Fri, May 5 12:30 PM HART HOUSE Theatre

Directed by Kalina Bertin

World Premiere – Canadian Spectrum – Canada  –  EYESTEEL FILM

Manic chronicles filmmaker Kalina Bertin’s struggle to make sense of the mental illness wreaking havoc over her family’s household. Convinced he holds a piece to the puzzle, she sets out to find the truth about their father, a man known alternately as a cult leader, a scam artist, a prophet, and a father of 15 children around the world. Manic takes the viewer on an intimate journey through the legacy of mental illness.

Attending Hot Docs: Director Kalina Bertin

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Date Time Venue
Sun, Apr 30 6:30 PM Scotiabank, Cinema 3
Mon, May 1 10:15 AM TIFF Bell Lightbox 3
Sat, May 6 8:00 PM TIFF Bell Lightbox 4

– Directed by Ann Shin

World Premiere – Canadian Spectrum –  Canada  –  FATHOM FILM GROUP

A real life story about two former enemies who become blood brothers for life: Zahed Haftlang was an Iranian boy who ran away from home to join the army. Najah Aboud was a 19-year old Iraqi who had been conscripted to fight in the war, leaving behind his wife and son. Both men fought in the Iran-Iraq war where Zahed found Najah critically injured in a bunker and decided to risk his own life to save him. Because of Zahed, Najah’s life was spared. Their lives diverged and they didn’t see nor hear of one another for 20 years, until one fateful day.

Attending Hot Docs: Director Ann Shin, Producer Hannah Donegan

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Date Time Venue
Sat, Apr 29 9:00 PM TIFF Bell Lightbox 3
Mon, May 1 4:00 PM Scotiabank, Cinema 4
Sat, May 6 6:30 PM Scotiabank, Cinema 3

Directed by Neasa Ní Chianáin & David Rane

Canadian Premiere – Special Presentation – Ireland/Spain  –  Distributor, BLUE ICE DOCS

A year in the life of two passionate and inspirational teachers in the only primary-age boarding school in

Ireland. Headfort School, housed in an 18th Century Hogwarts-like estate, embraces tradition and

modernity, and this is John and Amanda Leyden’s life. For John, rock music is just another subject

alongside Maths, Scripture and Latin, taught in a collaborative and often hilarious fashion. For Amanda

the key to connecting with children is the book and she uses all means to engage the minds of her young

charges with literature. For nearly half a century these two have shaped thousands of minds but now they

must start making preparations for their retirement. Will their intimate and caring cultivation of future

generations live on, or will it vanish like so many community-centered practices?

Attending Hot Docs: Directors Neasa Ní Chianáin & David Rane


Social Media Web: | Twitter: @LocoParentisDoc |


Date Time Venue
Mon, May 1 6:15 PM TIFF Bell Lightbox 2
Wed, May 3 12:15 PM Scotiabank, Cinema 4
Sun, May 7 3:45 PM TIFF Bell Lightbox 2

SHINERS – Directed by Stacey Tenenbaum

World Premiere – Canadian Spectrum – Canada  –  Distributor, FILMOPTION INTERNATIONAL

Meet the men and women who make their living cleaning our shoes. From New York to Tokyo and beyond, Shiners travels the world to give you an insider’s view of this overlooked profession. People around the world have turned to shoe shining to provide for themselves and their families. These are their stories. Enter their universe. You’ll never look at a shoe shiner the same way again!

Attending Hot Docs: Director Stacey Tenenbaum, subject Vincent Zacharko

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Date Time Venue
Sat, Apr 29 7:30 PM Isabel Bader Theatre
Sun, Apr 30 1:00 PM HART HOUSE Theatre
Thu, May 4 9:30 PM HART HOUSE Theatre

– Directed by Jian Fan

Canadian Premiere – Artscapes –  China  –  EYESTEEL FILM

When one of her poems is shared more than a million times on Chinese social media, Xiuhua Yu’s life changes overnight. Disabled by cerebral palsy, Yu has worked her entire life on her parents’ small rural farm, stuck in an unhappy arranged marriage. Her poetry initially serves not only as a means of exploring feelings of desire and longing, but as an escape from the drudgery of day to day life. As she gains in popularity, her poems become a gateway to fame, wealth and greater independence. We follow Yu over the course of a year on this transformative journey, at once moving and painful, towards greater artistic and personal freedom.

Attending Hot Docs: Director Jian Fan


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Date Time Venue
Sat, Apr 29 4:00 PM Scotiabank, Cinema 4
Sun, Apr 30 10:30 AM Scotiabank, Cinema 3
Sun, May 7 1:45 PM Scotiabank, Cinema 13

– Directed by Kyoko Miyake

Toronto Premiere – Magnificent Obsessions -Canada/UK  –  EYESTEEL FILM

Girl bands and their pop music permeate every moment of Japanese life. Following an aspiring pop singer and her fans, Tokyo Idols explores a cultural phenomenon driven by an obsession with young female sexuality, and the growing disconnect between men and women in hyper-modern societies.

Attending Hot Docs: Director Kyoko Miyake


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Date Time Venue
Mon, May 1 9:15 PM Scotiabank, Cinema 4
Wed, May 3 10:30 AM TIFF Bell Lightbox 3
Sun, May 7 10:00 AM TIFF Bell Lightbox 1