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The folk music documentaries Joan Baez I Am a Noise and Alexandria Bombach’s Indigo Girls documentary It’s Only Life After All are getting international premieres as part of the Hot Docs Festival, which unveiled its 2023 lineup on Tuesday.
Co-directors Miri Navasky, Karen O’Connor and Maeve O’Boyle’s portrait of Baez, the American folk singing legend and civil rights activist, bowed in Berlin. Bombach’s film about Amy Ray and Emily Saliers, who became folk-rock duo Indigo Girls and eventually environmental activists, premiered at Sundance.
The Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival’s 30th edition will be filled with a host of films about activists, as the festival is set to open with a screening of Twice Colonized, Danish director Lin Alluna’s film about Greenlandic Inuit lawyer and protector of her ancestral lands, Aaju Peter.
The Danish film, which had a world premiere at Sundance, will also launch the Copenhagen documentary film festival CPH:DOX.
There’s also world bows for We Are Guardians, co-directed by Edivan Guajajara, Chelsea Greene and Rob Grobman and co-produced by Fisher Stevens, which follows Indigenous guardians of the Amazon rainforest in Brazil, and Joe Piscatella’s Who’s Afraid of Nathan Law?, about a young politician and pro-democracy activist in Hong Kong.
214 films from 72 countries will screen in Toronto from April 27 to May 7 at North America’s largest documentary festival. Other titles headed to Hot Docs include Food and Country, director Laura Gabbert’s film about celebrity American chef and food writer Ruth Reichl; Frédéric Tcheng’s Invisible Beauty, about fashion revolutionary Bethann Hardison; Nicole Newnham’s The Disappearance of Shere Hite, the author of the 1976 bestseller The Hite Report centered on the sexual experiences of women that ignited an unforgiving backlash; and Benoît Bringer’s The Rise of Wagner, a film about ties between the Wagner Group mercenaries and Russia.
Besides returning as an in-person festival in Toronto, Hot Docs will also stream films online to audiences across Canada on its Hot Docs at Home virtual platform.
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