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‘The Closer We Get’ Takes Top Award at Hot Docs

Domestic detective story “The Closer We Get,” U.K. director Karen Guthrie’s feature bow, has won the International Feature Documentary Award at the 2015 Hot Docs festival, where it had its world premiere earlier this week. The award comes with a CAN $10,000 ($8,223) cash prize.

At Friday’s award ceremony, the special jury prize for international doc feature was presented to Ukrainian director Ostap Kostyuk’s “The Living Fire,” with an honorable mention going to U.S. helmer Adam Lough’s “Hot Sugar’s Cold World.”

Evangelia Kranioti’s “Exotica, Erotica, Etc.” nabbed the Emerging International Filmmaker Award.

The Canadian feature documentary award went to Charles Wilkinson’s “Haida Gwaii: On the Edge of the World,” which looks at the lives, work and current challenges of aboriginal right activists, newcomer ecologists and islanders living on Haida Gwaii, the stunningly beautiful archipelago on Canada’s northwest coast.

Sophie Deraspe’s “The Amina Profile” took home the special jury prize for Canadian feature doc, while Ryan Mullins’ “Chameleon” nabbed the emerging Canadian filmmaker award.

“Warriors From the North,” Danish director Soren Steen Jespersen’s inside look at Western Muslim youth who join radical groups abroad, won the mid-length documentary prize. The jury also gave an honorable mention to Adam Benzine’s “Lanzmann.”

U.K. director Eleanor Mortimer’s “Territory” was named best short documentary, while Sona Kocharyan and Marine Kocharyan’s “How to Cross (From Jiliz to Jiliz)” received an honorable mention.

The Lindalee Tracey Award, which goes to an emerging Canadian filmmaker with a “passionate point of view, a strong sense of social justice and a sense of humor,” was presented to Yosef Baraki and his film “Mina Walking.”

Veteran Chilean director Patricio Guzman received the festival’s 2015 outstanding achievement award. Veteran Toronto producer Anne Pick was honored with the Don Haig Award, which recognizes the creative vision an independent Canadian producer with a film in the festival.

During the confab, which unfolded this past week, Takahiro Hamano, senior producer at Japan’s NHK, was honored with the 2015 Doc Mogul Award.

The Hot Docs audience award and the list of the top 20 favorite Hot Docs films in 2015 will both be announced on May 4.



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