Three TVO-Commissioned Documentaries to Premiere at the 2014 Hot Docs Festival

Earlier this morning, the Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival announced their lineup for the 2014 edition. I’m excited to share that three TVO-commissioned documentaries were selected to screen at the festival:

  • Out of Mind, Out of Sight by four-time Emmy-winning filmmaker John Kastner, who spent 18 months at the Brockville Mental Health Centre chronicling the lives and treatment of four highly special-needs patients, some of whom have committed violent crimes
  • David & Me, about a young Toronto filmmaker’s journey through the American criminal justice system, and his attempt to help exonerate a man he believes was wrongly convicted of murder almost 30 years earlier
  • Mugshotabout society’s fascination with mugshots, what these tiny snapshots of history reveal about who we are and what their cultural value is to contemporary society

As a long-time supporter of emerging and established Ontario filmmakers, TVO is extremely proud to play a role in these thought-provoking documentaries, which will make their world premiere at Hot Docs alongside some of the world’s best point-of-view films.

As well, a preview of TVO’s groundbreaking interactive iPad documentary, Avatar Secrets, will be showcased in a large touch-screen installation at the TIFF Bell Lightbox throughout the duration of the Hot Docs festival. In Avatar Secrets, director Ramona Pringle explores what she describes as our addiction, not to technology, but to each other, and how the virtual world is a new frontier for finding meaningful connections and community in the 21st century. As part of the festival, Ramona will also be a panellist in an industry talk on tablet documentaries.

Our own Jane Jankovic, TVO’s Commissioning Editor for documentaries, will take part in an industry talk of her own, to discuss the priorities of TVO’s documentary strands, offer insights into the commissioning process, and provide an overview of TVO’s digital media strategy.

And I’m excited to be moderating a panel discussion following the film I Am Big Bird: The Caroll Spinney Story, featuring the man behind two of Sesame Street‘s most iconic characters.

TVO is also the exclusive sponsor of Hot Docs’ Canadian Spectrum Screening Program, highlighting the best in Canadian documentary cinema from the past year.

The Hot Docs festival runs April 24 – May 4. If you’re interested in checking out TVO’s films, visit And watch for their premieres on TVO later this year.