February 22, 2023 – Montreal – National Film Board of Canada (NFB)
For the 18th year in a row, the National Film Board of Canada is participating in the Rendez-vous de la Francophonie (RVF), which is marking its 25th anniversary with the theme of celebration. For this wide-ranging tribute to Canada’s Francophonie, taking place March 1 to 31, the NFB has compiled six programs of documentary and animated films celebrating “the music of French.” Available free of charge to francophone communities and francophiles across the country, both in venues and online, these programs offer a variety of stories that will help us all to connect with each other and better understand one another. Over 250 screenings in more than 90 cities are planned, from the East Coast to the West Coast and from the Great Lakes to the Arctic.
The spokesperson for this year’s event is well-known Fransaskois singer-songwriter Alexis Normand, director of the short film Assez French (French Enough), which the NFB is presenting at the RVF. Alexis will be embarking on a cross-Canada tour featuring her music and the film during the RVF. The event will also offer renowned Acadian filmmaker Phil Comeau’s new feature documentary, L’Ordre secret (The Secret Order), which shines a light on a powerful secret society that infiltrated every part of Canadian society and forged the fate of French-language communities.
The NFB at the 2023 RVF: six programs in venues or online
At the NFB, we’re celebrating “the music of French” through cinema and diversity. You’ll find full details of our six programs here, but below is a brief overview:
- Program 1 opens with Alexis Normand’s film about her family’s francophone identity, Assez French (French Enough), and then takes us on a musical journey throughout Canada’s Francophonie with seven other short films.
- Program 2 also features Assez French (French Enough). The film can be presented on its own, followed by a discussion after the screening, or it can be paired with two other films—including Marie Cadieux’s Éloge du chiac – Partie 2 (Celebrating Chiac – Part II)—that address language-related identity issues.
- For younger audiences, Program 3 offers a selection of song-filled, lively animated films, while Program 4 features Francis Papillon’s web series La liste des choses qui existent – saison 2 (The Great List of Everything – Season 2).
- Program 5 presents Phil Comeau’s feature-length film L’Ordre secret (The Secret Order), about the Ordre de Jacques-Cartier, active between 1926 and 1965. The doc paints a gripping portrait of the social and political struggles of Canadian francophone-minority communities.
- Program 6 shines a spotlight on various francophone identities in Canada: Indigenous youth (Le chemin rouge – Red Path by Thérèse Ottawa), women of various backgrounds and origins (Femmes debout – Standing Tall by Marie Ka), and the Deaf community (Les mots qui dansent – The Dance of Words by Yves Étienne Massicotte).
The screening schedule—in venues and online—can be found on the NFB Events page and at RVF.ca in the Calendar section. Search by city to find a screening near you.
RVF opening and closing
Along with RVF 2023 spokesperson Alexis Normand, the new Government Film Commissioner and Chairperson of the NFB, Suzanne Guèvremont, will be in attendance on opening night. For the RVF closing ceremonies, an online event will feature video excerpts of Alexis Normand’s tour, a screening of the film Assez French (French Enough), and a Q&A session with the director.
A year-round space dedicated to the Francophonie
Immerse yourself in the richness and diversity of Canada’s Francophonie all year long with a playlist of 59 films entitled Francophones across Canada, available at nfb.ca.
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French version here | Version française ici.