January 4, 2023
Vancouver, B.C. – KDocsFF returns to in-person events for the first time since 2020, and this year is the biggest festival to date. The festival is Metro Vancouver’s premier social justice film festival.
“It feels wonderful to be back in theatre. We have missed our audience, speakers, exhibitors, and partners so much,” says Janice Morris, founder and festival director of KDocsFF. “While the last two years were a unique challenge and much was learned, going back to an in-person event is re-energizing.”
KDocsFF will screen 25 films from February 22 to 26 at the Vancouver International Film Centre (Vancity Theatre) in Vancouver. The five-day span makes it the longest in-person KDocsFF to date.
“Our last face-to-face festival in 2020 featured 12 films over four days. Even our virtual festivals capped out at 20 films,” says Morris.
After undergoing a renovation during 2020, Vancity Theatre now has the capacity to feature more than one film at a time. In addition, this year, there will be double-feature presentations as well as joint panel discussions.
The theme of the 2023 KDocsFF is People. Places. Power.
“Many people ask me if I choose the films first or the theme. Every year, it’s the films first, and the theme somehow finds a way to emerge all on its own. There is so much synergy amongst this year’s official selections, in fact, that it led to the idea for the double features and joint panel discussions and Q&As,” adds Morris.
Some notable double features this year include:
- Unarchived and Writing with Fire
- The YouTube Effect and Backlash: Misogyny in the Digital Age
- The Scattering of Man and End of the Peace
- The Doctrine of Recovery and Returning Home
- The Monopoly of Violence and The Cost of Freedom: Refugee Journalists in Canada
Alice Street and Jean Swanson: We Need a New Map are both features that will return this year after much success last year. The films brought together the film subjects and has lead to joint projects in the DTES and the Vancouver Mural Festival.
“This film combo is one that simply must be viewed in person. Furthermore, while we had a successful screening of these films last year, the story didn’t end there. As our audience knows, KDocsFF exists to do much more than be an excellent film festival. We are proud of being an outstanding film festival, but that has never been the end goal. The end goal has always been creating awareness, engagement, and community solution-building.”
Some notable figures are scheduled to attend this year’s festival: Carol Todd, the mother of teen Amanda Todd who lost her life due to bullying; Phyllis Jack-Webstad, the creator of Orange Shirt Day; and Dewayne Lee Johnson, who is the subject of one of the films and a successful plaintiff against Monsanto.
Farhana Yamin, international lawyer and the subject of Rebellion, is a keynote speaker at the festival. Alex Winter, the director the YouTube Effect, will also attend. The former actor turned award-winning documentarian is best known for starring in Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure.
Tickets start at $5 a film and are on sale starting January 5. Find the full schedule here.