Montreal International Documentary Festival

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6 December 2016 Festival

Sold-Out Screenings and Packed Events at the 19th Annual RIDM

Réalisation de Jonathan Brisebois 
Musique de PAUL JACOBS 


The 19th annual Montreal International Documentary Festival ended on November 20, and many of its screenings and activities were major successes. Discussions, round tables, filmmaker panels, happy movie lovers and successful sponsorships represented the soul of the 19th edition, which opened with Fire at Sea by Gianfranco Rosi, winner of the Golden Bear at the Berlin International Film Festival and one of the year’s major documentaries. The festival concluded with the world premiere of Freelancer on the Front Lines by Santiago Bertolino, an immersion in the heart of journalism in conflict zones.


This year’s festival had 18 sold-out screenings. Le goût d’un pays, directed by François Legault, received a standing ovation and won the People’s Choice award, presented by TV5. The North American premiere of Another Year, directed by Shengze Zhu, won the Grand Prize for Best International Feature. Screened to full houses, Resurrecting Hassan by Carlo Guillermo Proto and Gulîstan, Land of Roses by Zaynê Akyol were respectively awarded the Grand Prize for Best Canadian Feature and the Student Award for the first one, and Best New Talent from Quebec/Canada for the second one.


The newly created section dedicated to Canadian Short or Medium-Length Films highlighted new local talents, with Maxime Lacoste-Lebuis and Maude Plante-Husaruk receiving the award for their first documentary, The Botanist. Once again, the festival’s bold, high-quality programming was internationally acknowledged.




This year, the RIDM honoured animated documentaries as well as the work of Pierre-Yves Vandeweerd and Deborah Stratman. Presented in collaboration with the Sommets du cinéma d’animation and the Cinémathèque québécoise, the Animating Reality retrospective included nine programs celebrating Canadian talents. As part of the retrospective dedicated to Pierre-Yves Vandeweerd, a master class and a cinematic art installation created especially for the event gave audiences a better understanding of the unique career of a poetic and deeply committed artist. Organized jointly with VISIONS and presented in collaboration with the Cinémathèque québécoise, a selection of Deborah Stratman’s films revealed the importance of this major American artist’s work.


For a fifth straight year, the UXdoc space presented virtual reality projects and interactive experiences. Jerusalem, We Are Here and S.E.N.S VR were both sold out. Projet Archipel, by local artists Guillaume Côté and Guillaume Campion, was a sonic journey to the heart of Montreal. The creators led a sold-out assisted navigation session.


The RIDM’s 19th edition presented 128 films from 35 countries in a total of 144 screenings. There were 14 world premieres, 18 North American premieres, 25 Canadian premieres and 31 Quebec premieres. The festival welcomed 128 guests from outside Quebec, including 27 filmmakers and 89 decision makers and speakers. 22 local filmmakers attended, including 7 first-time directors. Festival headquarters, located in the Ancienne École des beaux-arts, hosted exhibitions, receptions, free concerts and the Soirée de la relève. The latter event, presented in collaboration with Radio-Canada, was a presentation of short films by local up-and-coming filmmakers. The jury presented four awards.


Thanks to the support of its loyal partners, the RIDM was able to present 11 awards to deserving filmmakers, including four awards presented to local directors.


Doc Circuit Montréal (DCM) took place from November 11 to 16, welcoming more than 355 industry professionals among the total of 2000 attendees. DCM 2016 included 35 presentations, 4 pitch sessions, 4 specialized workshops, 2 master classes, 1 rough cut session, 14 networking activities, 5 grants, 160 guests (including 89 from outside Quebec) and 1089 business meetings. The market also featured a KINO VR – a three-day virtual reality laboratory – as well as the third edition of its Talent Lab, which concluded with the awarding of a $10,000 mentorship grant presented by Canal D to a Canadian French-language project. DCM was more popular than ever, attracting not only a diverse group of professionals but prominent guests and more than 40 new decision makers including 2M TV Maroc, Kino Lorber, IFP - Independent Filmmaker Project, The Globe and Mail, and the Sundance Institute’s Art of Nonfiction documentary initiative.

The RIDM has a rich and original year‐round program. In January 2017, we will launch the sixth annual series of RIDM+ monthly screenings, presented at Cinéma du Parc.

The 20th edition of the Montreal International Documentary Festival will take place from November 9 to 19, 2017.




Discover the best in documentary, take part in our year-round activities, and make the most of your festival!


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Discover the best in documentary, take part in our year-round activities, and make the most of your festival!

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Discover the best in documentary, take part in our year-round activities, and make the most of your festival!