Hot Docs lines up “Children 404,” “The Sheik,” “Big Bird”

The world premieres of Anthony Baxter's The Dangerous Game and Askold Kurov and Pavel Loparev's Children 404 (pictured) will be among 14 special presentations at this year's Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival in Toronto.
March 5, 2014

The world premieres of Anthony Baxter’s You’ve Been Trumped follow-up A Dangerous Game, and Askold Kurov and Pavel Loparev’s Russia-set Children 404 (pictured), will be among 14 special presentations at this year’s Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival, which runs from April 24 to May 4.

The remainder of special presentations and the festival’s full selection of documentaries will be announced on March 18.

Hot Docs’ four world premieres  include Baxter’s Dangerous Game, in which protesters go up against Donald Trump and other tycoons; Kurov and Loparev’s Children 404, which follows the experiences of LGBT youth in Russia; Chad Walker and Dave LaMattina’s I Am Big Bird: The Caroll Spinney Story, a portrait of the man behind Sesame Street characters Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch; and Igal Hecht’s The Sheik, on Olympic wrestler and pop icon The Iron Sheik.

Award-winners from the international festival circuit screening in the special presentations program include Sundance Grand Jury Prize-winners Return to Homs and Rich Hill; and the Venice Film Festival Golden Lion winner Sacro Gra.

Other special presentations include Victor Kossakovsky’s Demonstration, in which the director sends 32 film students to document Barcelona’s violent anti-austerity street protest in 2012; Arash and Arman Riahi’s Everyday Rebellion, on creative non-violent protests; and Margaret Brown’s The Great Invisible, about the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

The remaining special presentations include Robert Nixon and Fisher Stevens’s Mission Blue, which profiles the career of oceanographer and eco-activist Sylvia Earle; Marshall Curry’s Point and Shoot, on Baltimore native Matthew VanDyke’s motorcycle trip across the Middle East; Kitty Green’s Ukraine Is Not a Brothel, on Ukraine’s topless feminist activists; and Joe Berlinger’s Whitey: United States of America v. James J. Bulger, which takes on the myths surrounding Boston gangster and FBI informant James “Whitey” Bulger.

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