Congratulations to our WMM Filmmakers who took home ALL FOUR Hot Docs Pitch prizes! I, OF THE WATER, a new project from WMM filmmaker Kimberlee Bassford (WINNING GIRL, PATSY MINK: AHEAD OF THE MAJORITY), won the $50,000 CDN First Look top prize. I, OF THE WATER focuses on acclaimed Samoan writer Sia Figiel’s self-exile where she untangles her complicated past, revealing hidden trauma and initiating a journey toward healing. WMM-sponsored film THE SANDBOX (dir. Kenya-Jade Pinto, prod. Shasha Nakhai) won the second First Look prize of $15,000 CDN and won the audience prize. The 2023 CMF-Hot Docs Forum Canadian Pitch Prize of $10,000 CDN was awarded to WMM-sponsored film INTERCEPTED (dir. Oskana Karpovych, prod. Giacomo Nudi, Rocío Barba Fuentes, Pauline Tran Van Lieu, Lucie Rego and Darya Bassel) and is a journey through Ukraine that reveals the banality of evil behind the Russian invasion.
This is the second year in a row that a WMM filmmaker won the 1st place Pitch Prize at Hot Docs, the largest in North America! Last year, the first-place prize of $25,000 CDN was awarded to THE QUEENDOM (dir. Otilia Portillo; prod. Paula Arroio Sandoval & Oscura Producciones S.A. de C.V. (Mexico)).
The jury awards for premieres are still to come.
Executive Director Debra Zimmerman and Managing Director Kendra Hodgson were in Toronto to celebrate with the filmmakers.