Richard Poplak, Diana Neille’s “Agents of Influence” among Hot Docs Forum picks

EyeSteelFilm?s copro with South Africa?s Fireworx Media and Chronicle Productions is one of 20 projects selected for the annual pitch event.
March 14, 2018

Four Canadian projects and coproductions have been selected for this year’s Hot Docs Forum, an international documentary market and pitching event.

All told, 20 projects from 18 different countries were selected from 250 submissions. The docs will be presented to a round table of leading commissioning editors, film fund representatives, financiers, programming executives, sales agents and delegates during the May event.

Among the selected projects is EyeSteelFilm’s Agents of Influence, produced with South Africa’s Fireworx Media and Chronicle Productions. The doc, directed by Richard Poplak and Diana Neille, investigates the architects of the post-truth era and the growing global misinformation complex they’ve helped create.

Director Alejandro Bernal’s Cristian and Yimarly: Rebel Love, produced by Canada and Colombia’s Lulo Films, was also selected. Other Canadian productions heading to the forum are Oh Raftface Films’ climate change doc The Hottest August, produced with U.S.-based Walking Productions and directed by Brett Story, and Liz Marshall’s Meat The Future, which asks whether sustainable lab-grown created meat can replace slaughtering living animals.

Decision makers confirmed for this year include BBC, Al Jazeera, CBC, Discovery Communications, Field of Vision, Film Independent, HBO Documentary Films, Knowledge, The New York Times Op-Docs, NHK, PBS, Redford Center, Sundance Institute, SVT, TVO, yesDocu, YLE, VICE, and others.

For the second consecutive year, the First Look Pitch Prize will award three projects a total of CDN$140,000. The competition is aimed at supporting documentaries that examine social justice. First, second and third prizes receive $75,000, $40,000 and $25,000, respectively with winners announced at the market’s closing ceremony on May 2.

For the 10th consecutive year, the Hot Docs Corus Pitch Prize will also be awarded to the best Canadian pitch at the event, determined by a committee of non-Canadian international commissioning editors. The $10,000 cash prize must be used towards the production and completion budget for the winning doc.

The Hot Docs Forum will take place on the mornings of May 1 and May 2.

The full list of participants follows below:

Agents of Influence
Production companies: EyeSteelFilm Inc.(Canada), Fireworx Media Pty (South Africa), Chronicle Productions Pty (South Africa)
Directors: Richard Poplak, Diana Neille

Balloon Wars
Production Companies: ?House of Real Aps? (Denmark), GROUPE DEUX (France)
Director: Sissel Morrell Dargis

Born in China
Production Companies: Motto Pictures Inc. (USA), Pumpernickel Films (France), Next Generation Production, LLC (USA)
Directors: Nanfu Wang, Lynn Zhang

Case 993
Production Company: KTF Films (USA)
Director: Shareef Nasir

Cristian and Yimarly: Rebel Love
Production Companies: Lulo Films Incorporated (Canada), Lulo Films SAS (Colombia)
Director: Alejandro Bernal

Cuban Dancer
Production Companies: INDYCA s.n.c. (Italy), MICRODOCUMENTARIES, LLC (USA), Valdivia Film (Chile)
Director: Roberto Salinas

Joyce Carol Oates: I’ll Take You There
Production Companies: Mantaray Film AB (Sweden), East Village Entertainment, LLC (USA)
Director: Stig Björkman

Meat the Future
Production Companies: Meat the Future Inc. (Canada)
Director: Liz Marshall

Mirror Mirror on the Wall
Production Companies: DOCDAYS Productions GmbH (Germany), CNEX Foundation Limited (China)
Director: Sascha Schöberl

Nobody Loves Me
Production Company: NLM Movie LLC (USA)
Directors: Farihah Zaman, Jeff Reichert

Production Company: Moving Documentary ApS (Denmark)
Director: Mira Jargil

Production Companies: Lightbox Ltd. (Kenya), We are not the Machine Ltd. (USA), DUOfilm AS (Norway)
Director: Sam Soko

The Future of Forever
Production Company: Unlimited Film Operations Sp. z o.o. (Poland)
Director: Ana Brzezi?ska

The Hottest August
Production Companies: Oh Raftface Films Inc. (Canada), Walking Productions, LLC (USA)
Director: Brett Story

The Last Year of Congo Mirador
Production Companies: Sancocho Publico A.C. (Venezuela), Spiraleye Productions Ltd. (UK), Pacto Audiovisual Prod. Assoc. (Brazil)
Director: Anabel Rodriguez

The Queen’s Man
Production Company: Abstract LLC (USA)
Directors: Daniel Claridge, Andrew Coffman

The Rashomon Effect
Production Companies: Stories Seldom Seen Films, LLC (USA), Multitude Films, LLC (USA)
Director: Lyric R. Cabral

Uluru & the Magician
Production Companies: Brindle Films Pty Ltd. (Australia), The Doc Book Co. (Australia), The Finch Company Pty Ltd. (Australia)
Director: Anna Broinowski

Wishing on a Star
Production Companies: Videomante soc. coop. (Italy), Mischief Films & Co KG (Austria), Artcam Films, s.r.o. (Czech Republic), Peter Kerekes s.r.o. (Slovak Republic)
Director: Peter Kerekes

You Won’t Kill Me
Production Company: Alpha Bear Productions Ltd. (UK)
Director: Leslie Lee

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About The Author
Barry Walsh is editor and content director for realscreen, and has served as editor of the publication since 2009. With a career in entertainment media that spans two decades, prior to realscreen, he held the associate editor post for now defunct sister publication Boards, which focused on the advertising and commercial production industries. Before Boards, he served as editor of Canadian Music Network, a weekly music industry trade, and as music editor for As content director, he also oversees the development of content for the brand's market-leading events, the Realscreen Summit and Realscreen West, as well as new content initiatives.