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The NFB at the 2021 Montreal International Documentary Festival.


October 20, 2021 – Montreal, Quebec – National Film Board of Canada (NFB)

The 24th edition of the Montreal International Documentary Festival (RIDM) is featuring two NFB co-productions, one making its world premiere and the other its Quebec premiere. These moving and profoundly human feature-length docs chronicle their protagonists’ trials and hopes. RIDM will take place in theatres from November 10 to 21, 2021, and online November 14 to 25, 2021.


  • Making its WORLD PREMIERE in the “Family topographies” section, Dear Audrey, by Montreal director Jeremiah Hayes (Reel Injun, 2009), is a tribute to acclaimed Canadian filmmaker Martin Duckworth and his undying love for his wife and family.
  • Making its QUEBEC PREMIERE and competing in the national feature competition in the “Gesture of resistance” section, Kímmapiiyipitssini: The Meaning of Empathy, by Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers, a filmmaker from the Kainai Nation, paints an intimate portrait of her community and the impacts of the substance use and overdose epidemic.


“Even though Martin [Duckworth] has become my mentor and role model, this film isn’t a glorifying homage to a man, nor is it a retrospective of his many films. This is a raw and honest depiction of a sometimes-flawed human being, who’s fighting the toughest battle of his life, and selflessly struggling to do the right thing.” – Jeremiah Hayes, director, Dear Audrey


Dear Audrey by Jeremiah Hayes – WORLD PREMIERE
(2021 | 90 min)
Co-produced by Cineflix Media and the NFB
Press kit (synopsis, biographies, images and credits): mediaspace.nfb.ca/epk/dear-audrey

  • Acclaimed activist-filmmaker Martin Duckworth, 2015 recipient of Quebec cinema’s highest honour, the Albert-Tessier award, puts down his camera to fight for the most important cause of his life—caring for his wife through the final stages of Alzheimer’s disease. Martin’s love deepens for her as he looks back on an epic life and career.
  • In addition to animation, Dear Audrey includes a stylized, impressionistic blend of excerpts from films Martin Duckworth directed and other films he’s worked on as a camera operator or DOP, along with countless family photos and archival footage.
  • The film will have its world premiere screening, with French subtitles, at 6 p.m. on Friday, November 19, 2021, at Montreal’s Cinéma du Musée; it will be available online from November 22 to 25, 2021.
  • Jeremiah Hayes is an award-winning director, editor and writer. He is best known as the co-director, co-writer and editor of the film Reel Injun, for which he won a Gemini Award and a Peabody Award. Hayes is also recognized for his work on the Emmy-nominated and Sundance award-winning feature documentary Rumble: The Indians Who Rocked the World, for which he was honoured with the Canadian Screen Award for Best Editing in a Documentary Program.

NATIONAL FEATURE COMPETITION – Gesture of resistance section

Kímmapiiyipitssini: The Meaning of Empathy by Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers – QUEBEC PREMIERE
(2021 | 124 min 50 s)
Co-produced by Seen Through Woman Productions and the NFB
Press kit (synopsis, biographies, images and credits): mediaspace.nfb.ca/epk/kimmapiiyipitssini-the-meaning-of-empathy

  • A portrait of a community facing radical change, the film brings humanity and compassion to the substance-use crisis and drug-poisoning epidemic on the Kainai First Nation in southern Alberta. Filmmaker Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers, herself a member of the Kainai First Nation (Blood Tribe, Blackfoot Confederacy) as well as Sámi from Norway, welcomes viewers to witness the collective work of her community.
  • The film will have its Quebec premiere, with French subtitles, at 2:15 p.m. on Saturday, November 20, 2021, in the main theatre of Montreal’s Cinémathèque québécoise, and will be available online from November 22 to 25, 2021.
  • Awards: Emerging Canadian Filmmaker Award and Rogers Audience Award for Canadian Feature Documentary, Hot Docs 2021; Colin Low Award for Best Canadian Director, DOXA 2021

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Associated Links

Montreal International Documentary Festival
Cineflix Media
Cinéma du Musée
Cinémathèque québécoise

French version here | Version française ici.

Media Relations

  • Nadine Viau
    NFB Publicist – Montreal
    C.: 514-458-9745

  • Lily Robert
    Director, Communications and Public Affairs, NFB
    C.: 514-296-8261

  • About the NFB

    The NFB is Canada’s public producer and distributor of award-winning documentaries, auteur animation, interactive stories and participatory experiences, working with talented creators across the country. The NFB is taking action to combat systemic racism and become a more open and diverse organization, while working to strengthen Indigenous-led production and gender equity in film and digital media. NFB productions have won more than 7,000 awards, including 12 Oscars. To access this unique content, visit NFB.ca.