Organizers of the Hot Docs International Documentary Festival have revealed that this year’s industry market will move to an online format, replacing the live industry event that was canceled earlier this month due to the current COVID-19 pandemic.
The digital edition will offer same market events and services made available at the live event, including the Hot Docs Forum, Hot Docs Deal Maker, Distribution Rendezvous and the Doc Shop.
All industry passes will be filtered into one Hot Docs Industry All Access Online Pass, which will provide delegates access to all digital offerings.
Industry content will be available during the festival window until May 31.
This year’s Hot Docs Forum will allow pitch teams to present their projects digitally to top decision makers, who will then provide their comments and feedback. All pitches and feedback will then be made available on the Doc Shop for pass holders to view.
One-on-one pitch meetings Hot Docs Deal Maker and Distribution Rendezvous will both proceed virtually with organizing staff facilitating match-made meetings between participants.
Elsewhere, the Doc Shop – the online market that offers industry players access to doc titles on-demand — will house recorded Close Up With… sessions, which provide updates from commissioners and funders; and Micro-Meetings, offering insider knowledge from broadcasters, funders and tech leaders.
This year’s event will also include specified sessions geared toward examining the effects COVID-19 are having on the film industry, while also offering strategies to support business and providing resources on emergency funding and mental health.
The live version of Hot Docs 2020 was scheduled to take place in Toronto from April 30 to May 10.
“Hot Docs is committed to supporting documentarians and our film community during this unprecedented time,” said Elizabeth Radshaw, industry programs director for Hot Docs, in a statement. “Although it will never replace the powerful human connection of coming together in community, we’re grateful to be able to host our industry activities virtually, allowing all of us to support outstanding and outspoken films get made.”