Teodora Ana Mihai’s documentary Waiting for August and Frederik Jan Depickere’s short film Adrift are selected for this year’s Canadian International Documentary Film Festival, aka Hot Docs (24 April – 4 May). Three more films co-produced with Flanders, Before The Last Curtain Falls, Ne me quitte pas and See No Evil, made the bill in Toronto.

Waiting for AugustWaiting for August portrays the gripping story of 15-year-old Georgiana, the eldest daughter of the Halmac family. She lives with her six siblings in a social housing condo on the outskirts of Bacau, Romania. As their mother, who works as an economic migrant in Italy, won’t be back until summer, Georgiana is involuntarily catapulted to the role of new head of the family.

Selected for Hot Docs’ International Spectrum, Waiting for August is in the running for the fest’s Jury Prize as well as the Audience Award. Also screening in competition is Jos De Putter’s See No Evil, which was co-produced by Flemish prodco Cobra Films.

The Canadian Spectrum of the festival welcomes Before The Last Curtain Falls, by German-Canadian director Thomas Wallner. The documentary joins a group of ageing travesty artists on their stage tour around Europe and Southeast Asia. Their hair has grown a little thinner, their bellies a little bigger and their butts a little slacker, but they set out one last time to live the glamorous life of the famous. The theatre play ‘Gardenia’, directed by Alain Platel and Frank Van Laecke, has given them a platform to express their feelings and experiences in front of an audience.

The script of Before The Last Curtain Falls was co-scripted by Eva Küpper (What’s in a Name, State of the Art), while the film was shot with a mainly Belgian crew. Bart Van Langendonck of Savage Film (Labyrinthus, Rain, Bullhead) acted as Flemish co-producer.

Frederik Jan Depickere’s Adrift can be found in the Hot Docs Short Film Programme. The nine-minute short follows a refugee, wandering aimlessly 150 kilometres above the arctic circle. Daniel De Valck of Cobra Films produced the film.

Finally, Ne me quitte pas by Niels van Koevorden and Sabine Lubbe Bakker is part of the Special Presentations section. It’s a drama about life on the brink of society; Bob and Marcel share their solitude, sense of humor and craving for alcohol. They have agreed that suicide is the best way out if worse comes to worst. In that case, they have chosen the perfect spot to do so: under Bob’s tree of life.

Hanne Phlypo and Antoine Vermeesch produced Waiting for August for Clin d’Oeil Films (Houses With Small Windows, The Art of Becoming). All films, except Adrift, could count on the support of the Flanders Audiovisual Fund/Film Fund of Flemish Cultural Affairs Minister Joke Schauvliege.

Published on Thursday 20 March 2014