April 14, 2021 – Vancouver – National Film Board of Canada
Vancouver and Calgary creators explore powerful themes of love, identity and human rights in four National Film Board of Canada (NFB) documentaries premiering at the 20th-anniversary edition of the DOXA Documentary Film Festival, streaming online across Canada from May 6 to 16.
The NFB selection at DOXA features the world premiere of the feature-length film Love: The Last Chapter by Dominique Keller, a documentary director based in Calgary.
There are three British Columbia premieres—including two special-presentation feature docs:
- Someone Like Meby Sean Horlor and Steve J. Adams, a directing duo from Vancouver who created work that shines a spotlight on misunderstandings—queer and otherwise. Someone Like Me is a special presentation in the Rated Y for Youth program.
- Spotlighted in DOXA’s Justice Forum, Kímmapiiyipitssini: The Meaning of Empathy is directed by Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers, a Vancouver-based filmmaker and actor, and member of the Kainai First Nation in southern Alberta and the Sámi in Norway, whose recent work includes the acclaimed feature The Body Remembers When the World Broke Open.
DOXA is also hosting the BC debut of Into Light, a short doc shot in Yellowknife by West Vancouver’s Sheona McDonald, a Canadian Screen Award-winning director, writer and producer.
Love: The Last Chapter by Dominique Keller
On the outside, it looks like any ordinary seniors’ facility. But on the inside, a series of remarkable love stories is unfolding. With startlingly intimate access, director Dominique Keller follows three different couples as they navigate the delights and challenges of late-in-life romance. Following the daily routines in the facility, Keller peers into the kingdom of old age and brings each couple’s journey into tender focus. Despite health concerns, mobility issues, and interference from concerned families, the need for intimate connection and closeness remains steadfast. Quietly observational, Love: The Last Chapter builds fully embodied portraits of each individual in all of their indelible humanity.
Produced by David Christensen and Coty Savard for the NFB’s North West Studio in Edmonton, and by Dominique Keller and Karen Pickles for Keller Media Inc. The executive producers are David Christensen and Dominique Keller.
Produced with the participation of the Canada Media Fund and made possible through the Alberta Provincial Tax Credit Program. Produced in association with Super Channel with the participation of Canadian Film or Video Production Tax Credit, with the assistance of the Hot Docs Ted Rogers Fund, in association with Accessible Media Inc. and with the assistance of Good Pitch Vancouver, Alberta Foundation for the Arts, Director’s Guild of Canada and Writer’s Guild of Canada.
Synopsis, biographies, images: mediaspace.nfb.ca/epk/love-the-last-chapter
BC premiere | Special Presentation, Rated Y for Youth:
Someone Like Me by Sean Horlor and Steve J. Adams
Drake, a young gay man from Uganda, leaves behind everything he knows to attain the universal freedoms everyone deserves: to be who he is and love whomever he chooses without fear of discrimination, persecution, or violence. A group of queer strangers unite to resettle Drake in Vancouver, but they are tasked with a year-long commitment to someone they’ve never met, and struggle with the challenging conditions of this support. Together, Drake and his sponsors embark on an emotional journey in search of personal freedom, revealing how in a world where one must constantly fight for the right to exist, survival itself becomes a victory.
Produced by Teri Snelgrove and Shirley Vercruysse, and executive-produced by Shirley Vercruysse for the BC & Yukon Studio.
Synopsis, biographies, images: mediaspace.nfb.ca/epk/someone-like-me
BC premiere | Special Presentation, Justice Forum:
Kímmapiiyipitssini: The Meaning of Empathy by Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers
Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers’ film is an intimate portrait of survival, love and the collective work of healing in the Kainai First Nation in southern Alberta, a Blackfoot community facing the impacts of substance use and a drug-poisoning epidemic. Community members active in addiction and recovery, first responders and medical professionals implement harm reduction to save lives. This work is contextualized within the historical and contemporary impacts of settler colonialism; Kímmapiiyipitssini: The Meaning of Empathy draws a connecting line between the effects of colonial violence on Blackfoot land and people and the ongoing substance-use crisis. Held in love and hope for the future, the film asks the audience to be a part of a radical and profound change in Tailfeathers’ community.
Produced by Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers and Lori Lozinski (Seen Through Woman Productions) and NFB producer and executive producer David Christensen (North West Studio), with the participation of Telefilm Canada and the assistance of the Hot Docs CrossCurrents Canada Doc Fund.
Synopsis, biographies, images: mediaspace.nfb.ca/epk/kimmapiiyipitssini-the-meaning-of-empathy
Into Light by Sheona McDonald
When a child reveals who they truly are on the inside, how does a parent set aside their own expectations to help them become their most authentic self? Set against the northern landscape of Yellowknife, Sheona McDonald’s new documentary captures a season of change as a mother and child navigate the complexities of gender identity together. As elemental changes parallel this extraordinary journey, the return of brighter days uncovers a confident and social little girl with an encyclopedic knowledge of dinosaurs, a deep love of animals, and a parent who fully embraces this magical person.
Produced by Teri Snelgrove and executive-produced by Shirley Vercruysse for the BC & Yukon Studio.
Synopsis, biographies, images: mediaspace.nfb.ca/epk/into-light-short-film
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Electronic Press Kit | Images, trailers, synopses: Into Light | Kímmapiiyipitssini: The Meaning of Empathy | Love: The Last Chapter | Someone Like Me
DOXA Documentary Film Festival
Love: The Last Chapter – website
Canada Media Fund
Alberta Provincial Tax Credit Program
Canadian Film or Video Production Tax Credit
Hot Docs Ted Rogers Fund
Accessible Media Inc.
Good Pitch Vancouver
Alberta Foundation for the Arts
Director’s Guild of Canada
Writer’s Guild of Canada
Hot Docs CrossCurrents Canada Doc Fund
French version here | Version française ici.