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19 October 2023 Forum RIDM

Canadian participants for Doc Lab Montréal announced

Press releases

Montreal, October 18, 2023 – Forum RIDM is delighted to announce the Canadian short and feature film projects selected for Doc Lab Montréal, presented by Warner Bros. Discovery Access Canada. These projects will enable participants to join international delegations and take part in mentoring sessions as well as Forum RIDM activities, in partnership with Netflix. 

These participants will also have the chance to compete for prizes provided by organizations such as ONF, NFB, CineGround, SLA Location, MainFilm and Rogers, among other partners.

Feature film projects

Filmmaker/producer duos will be given a unique opportunity to present their projects at a pitch session during Forum RIDM. 

Two of the selected projects tackle the issue of territory: Ruinas de Utopía by Julián Darby Carmona delves into the daily lives of the inhabitants of Mexico’s Jumil mountain, located near an ever-expanding Canadian mining concession, while Au-delà des vagues by Chadi Bennani, winner of the Regard sur Montréal Film Residency, paints an intimate and meditative portrait of the Magdalen Islands, the epicenter of a desperate fight against the climate crisis. As for Propolis by Lukas Maier, the film reflects on the current Anthropocene epoch through the prism of bees and a narrative about the director’s life and passion as a beekeeper.

In Geeks autochtones contre-attaquentWidia Larivière captures the emergence of an Indigenous geek creator movement and its quest for reappropriation and representation. Identity is also at the heart of two highly personal projects. Adam Mbowe’s Smiling Coast examines the political and cultural forces that have shaped Gambia’s welcoming reputation, and Noura, a new project by Myriam Ben Saïd, winner of the 2022 RIDM award for UQAM graduates, that takes us on an emotionally charged journey as she navigates between two worlds. 

Laurence B. Lemaire’s Les soeurs Albasha touches on themes of roots and exile through the intimate daily life of a Syrian family trying to settle in their new home in Trois-Rivières. With Les dimanchesJustine Martin continues to explore the subject of her last short film Oasis, this time looking back on the relationship between twin brothers as they enter adulthood and the disability experienced by one of them begins to shed light on their differences. 

Lastly, the following projects will be presented at pitch sessions that will be open to accredited Forum RIDM participants. Laurentides Projects by Benoît Massé probes the consequences of a deregulated real estate market through the lens of families living in motels in the heart of the Laurentians. The Bamboo Forest (Los Guaduales) by Bryan Angarita takes us to the border of Venezuela and Colombia to recount the consequences of the Venezuelan population’s exodus in the wave of the country’s economic crisis, through the story of a young man who dreams of becoming a rodeo star. And Workers Leaving by Daniel Araquiel Dietzel is a retelling of the Lumière Brothers’ Workers Leaving the Lumière Factory that highlights the status of work in the contemporary world.  

Short film projects

Among the short films, two were selected in collaboration with the Wapikoni mobile. Veillée funèbre en communauté by Isabelle Kanapé, winner of the Soirée de la relève Radio-Canada prize at RIDM 2022, which takes us on a journey into the lives of bereaved Indigenous families to discover the distinctive features of community funeral rites. With Ut: le silence des canotsManuel Kak’wa Kurtness recounts the journey of an 87-year-old mushum (grandfather) who wishes to pass on his knowledge to his grandchildren as he works to repair two old canoes.

In Racines (WT), director Camila Novais explores her South American ancestry and instigates a dialogue between North and South America, using the analogy of trees communicating with each other. Matters of identity are also at the forefront in Omar Elhamy’s A Walk in a Thistle Field, which charts his paternal lineage after discovering his Palestinian roots. 

Also selected are two sensitive and intimate works: Le déménagement by Amélie Barrette, which delves into the lives of her grandparents, an elderly couple faced with moving to a special care facility, and Orbites by Sarah Seené, which explores the mother-son relationship between Marie-Christine, who recently lost her sight, and Liam, both of whom suffer from congenital glaucoma. 

As for Clara Milo’s Madhaus, it offers a contemplative journey through the cycle of forest fires, depicting the absurdities that arise from our need to control nature. Temporaire by Ginger Le Pêcheur tells the story of Aya, Yasmina and Elena, three Uber Eats delivery drivers who question the likelihood of achieving the ambitions that brought them to Montreal in the first place. Ok Google by Félix Bouffard-Dumas examines the multilayered identity of today’s Quebecers through the playful conversations they have with their voice assistant. 

Rounding out the selection is Sédition tranquille by Adam-Gabriel Belley-Côté, which chronicles the life of artist Denys Tremblay, who became the first municipal monarch in North America in the aftermath of the Saguenay flood.

Doc Lab Montreal receives financial support from the Canada Council for the Arts.

About Forum RIDM

Forum RIDM, presented by Netflix, aims to stimulate the production and distribution of independent documentaries, both nationally and internationally, by promoting the exchange of information and meetings between the various professionals in the documentary industry. Roundtables, conferences and workshops on major current issues will bring together over 400 filmmakers and representatives of various production, broadcasting and distribution companies over six days.

About Netflix

Netflix is one of the world's leading entertainment services with 233 million paid memberships in over 190 countries enjoying TV series, films and games across a wide variety of genres and languages. Members can play, pause and resume watching as much as they want, anytime, anywhere, and can change their plans at any time.

Forum RIDM’s 19th edition, presented by Netflix, will take place from November 17 to 22, 2023.

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Media contact: Caroline Rompré | pixelleX communications | 514-778-9294 |


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