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Press Release

In celebration of its 20th Anniversary, Reelworld Film Festival
announced its largest 100% Canadian lineup. The festival runs on a digital platform from
October 14-19th, and puts Canadian racially diverse talent front and centre. Films will be made
available across Ontario and Festival goers will be able enjoy the films on ROKU and high
performance video on demand. Audiences will be able to support 38 Canadian directors
identifying as Black, Indigenous, Asian, South Asian, Middle Eastern and Latin American. Now,
as for the past 20 years, Reelworld works to change the face of the industry, literally.
“Back in 2000, when I started the festival, no one in the industry was talking about racial
diversity on our screens.” says Executive Director and Reelworld Founder, Tonya Williams. “In
fact, there were those who told me we had no problems in Canada in this regard. The systemic
racism was so deep that people appeared deaf and blind to the issues. We've really come a
long way when I see everyone is now making this a top priority and they have finally come to
recognize the inequities that have been present in our industry since its inception in 1896.”
This year’s lineup includes 36 films which reflect the importance of ensuring diversity in the
industry. Diversity gives rise to complex narratives and perspectives unique to racially diverse
communities. These insights are necessary to help generate new understandings about the
world around us, challenge dominant narratives, and generate socially relevant dialogue. The
lineup boasts a creative make up of 38 Canadian directors identifying as Black, Indigenous, and
People of Colour. The lineup also includes the hundreds of racially diverse Canadian
producers, writers, actors and crew members involved in the creation of these films. This year’s
films were selected by programmers, Marina Hanna, Reza Sameni, Aisha Evelyna, Ella
Cooper, and Suri Parmar.
Programming Manager, Suri Parmar states, “We have an incredible selection of films this year
that can only be described as unprecedented. A daring, dynamic program that pushes
boundaries and viewers out of their comfort zone. The roster is iconoclastic and dynamic with
storylines and themes that empower historically marginalized communities.”
Festival awards winners will be announced at Reelworld’s curated online award ceremony. The
Juror panel features industry professionals Mariah Inger, Ian Steaman, Kathleen
Newman-Bremang, Tiffany Hsiung, Hayden Wazelle, and Jeff Barnaby. The awards to be given
include the Outstanding Feature Film Award, Outstanding Short Film Award, Audience Choice
Award, Standout Feature Film Producer, Standout Short Film Producer, Standout Feature Film
Director, Standout Short Film Director, Standout Feature Film Actress, Standout Short Film
Actress, Standout Feature Film Actor, Standout Short Film Actor, Standout Feature Film Writer,
Standout Short Film Writer, Standout Feature Film Cinematographer, and the Standout Short
Film Cinematographer.
Reelworld’s free and nationally accessible industry programme will run alongside the festival
and feature 10 bold and insightful panels and webinars. The Industry program spotlights
seasoned professionals and creatives and provides professional development in areas such as
directing, screenwriting, producing, funding, distribution, and marketing. Industry giants Telefilm
Canada, and Canadian Media Fund will be presenting case studies, and Reelworld’s new
partner Shaftesbury will be presenting a webinar, “How to Engage an Audience”. Award winning
writer, producer, and director Clement Virgo, will also be engaging in a “one-on-one”
conversational webinar sharing his insights and answering audience questions.
Wrapping up the festival is the Emerging 20 Face2Face where up and coming filmmakers will
have the chance to pitch their projects to leading decision makers in the Canadian
screen-based entertainment industry. The Emerging 20 Program, now in its 19th year, is
Reelworld’s prestigious incubator and talent discovery initiative. Its primary focus is to
accelerate the commissioning and production of otherwise undiscovered projects by racially
diverse Canadian artists. This year’s participants will take part in an intense training program
from September to October 2020 where they learn valuable skills such as story development,
marketing, audience development, and focused pitch preparation for their projects. The
Face2Face event on October 20th will give participants invaluable exposure.
The Reelworld Film Festival would not be possible without the help of our Platinum Partners,
TD Bank, Telefilm, and Bell Media. Thank you to all our returning and new Partners and
Funders including CBC/Radio-Canada, Ontario Creates, The Canada Council for the Arts,
Ontario Arts Council, and Channel Zero.
Below is the full programming list for the event:
The feature films confirmed for the 2020 Reelworld Film Festival are:
KENBE LA: Until We Win / Canada (Director: Will Prosper)
Le Coupable (Guilt) / Canada (Director: Onur Karaman)
Time Sleeper / Canada (Director: Bisong Taiwo)
The Greatest Country in the World / Canada (Director: Ky Nam Le Duc)
Killer Queen / Canada (Director: Ramin Fateh)
My Dearest Sister / Canada (Director: Kyoka Tsukamoto)
Vagrant / Canada (Director: Caleb Ryan)
White Elephant / Canada (Director: Andrew Chung)
Curse of Willow Song / Canada (Director: Karen Lam)
Nolan: Here Nor There / Canada (Director: Wilfred Dieter)
The Corruption of Divine Providence / Canada (Director: Jeremy Torrie)
The short films confirmed for the 2020 Reelworld Film Festival are:
Signal Fire / Canada (Director: Alice Shin)
Grey / Canada (Director: Jack Li)
Turkish Mesir Macunu / Canada (Director: Sibel Guvenc)
Vest / Canada (Director: Samir Mallal)
The Onyx Butterfly / Canada (Director: Yasmin Evering-Kerr)
My Favourite Food is Indian Tacos, My Favourite Drink is Iced Tea, and My Favourite
Thing is Drumming / Canada (Director: Derius Matchewan)
Wearing My Culture / Canada (Director: Ulivia Uviluk)
An Uninvited Guest / Canada (Director: Richard B. Pierre)
Clebs / Canada (Director: Halima Ouardiri)
Promise Me / Canada (Director: Alison Duke)
Plantonic / Canada (Director: Krit Komkrichwarakool)
Déraciné / Canada (Director: Rolla Tahir)
Baby Blue / Canada (Director: Cindy Hojung Hah)
To Kill a Secret / Canada (Director: Jevon Boreland)
D. N. A. / Canada (Director: Alpha Nicky)
Idols Never Die / Canada (Director: Jerome Yoo)
Cranberry Flirt / Canada (Director: Marianna Phung)
Tesfaye (Hope) / Canada (Director: Daniel D Negatu)
A Love Letter to Doctor Theresa Tam / Canada (Director: Maninder Chana)
The Greatest Horror Film Ever Made / Canada (Director: Brandon Jordan)
Kanockatonanok / Canada (Director: Nicolas Jimy Awashish)
Object of Merit / Canada (Director: Amanda Ann-Min Wong)
The Sky is Blue, Kalthoum / Canada (Director: Darani Urgessa)
The web series confirmed for the 2020 Reelworld Film Festival are:
NEXT STOP / Canada (Director: Jabbari Weekes, Tichaona Tapambwa & Phil Witmer)
Somnius: Pilgrims of Centauri / Canada (Director: Denver Jackson)
The Industry Panel Schedule is as follows:
Show Me the Money! Presented by Rogers / Oct. 15, 1:30PM
Telefilm Canada Case Study / Oct. 15, 3:00PM
DGC - In Conversation with Canadian Screen Award Winners / Oct. 15, 4:30PM
One-on-One with Clement Virgo / Oct. 16, 3:00PM
Creating a Production Company 101 / Oct. 16, 4:30PM
Web Series Screening / Oct. 16, 7:00PM
Get on that Roster and Direct in BC! / Oct. 17, 3:00PM
Canada Media Fund Case Study - Tokens / Oct. 18, 2:00PM
One-on-One with Shirley Cheechoo / Oct. 19, 12:00PM
How to Engage and Keep Your Audience! / Oct. 19, 2:00PM
All films will be accessible virtually with an all-access pass available here. Industry panels and offerings are free. To stay up to date with the many exciting things Reelworld has to offer in the weeks to come,
be sure to subscribe to the newsletter for updates and follow us on social media.



For media inquiries, please contact:

Reelworld Communications Director

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Founded in 2000 by Tonya Williams, The Reelworld Film Festival and Reelworld Screen Institute are the largest national platforms dedicated to supporting Canadian filmmakers and artists from the Black, Indigenous, Asian, South Asian, Middle Eastern, and Latin American communities. Since its inception Reelworld has been at the forefront in creating access and inclusion for racially diverse Canadian talent.

Reelworld Announces Its Largest All Canadian Film Lineup Yet

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