Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers wins best Canadian director and Father wins best feature documentary at DOXA festival

Tailfeathers's film, Kímmapiiyipitssini: The Meaning Of Empathy, will be screened tonight at the DOXA Drive-In

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      The DOXA Documentary Film Festival documentaries will remain available for streaming until midnight May 17, as well as at selected screenings at the Pacific National Exhibition Amphitheatre.

      One of those screenings tonight is Kímmapiiyipitssini: The Meaning Of Empathy, whose Vancouver director, Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers, has just been honoured by the festival.

      She won the Colin Low Award for Best Canadian Director for her examination of how Kainai First Nation in the Blackfoot Reserve in southern Alberta is addressing addiction. Her mother is a physician there and Tailfeathers spent five years filming her picture.

      DOXA fest jurors Julia Aoki, Selwyn Jacob and Kim Hsu Guise offered this explanation: "Tailfeathers draws on personally held relations, community connections, and carefully compiled social histories to render the complexities of colonialism, substance use, and the politics of health through intimate portraits of the people most affected. The stories of healthcare workers and people who use substances are woven together with rigorous compassion, conveying the significant challenges posed by the opioid crisis and the healing that is made possible through community leadership and care.”

      DOXA's best feature documentary award went to Father, which was directed by Deng Wei about a Chinese family with a keen interest in fortune telling and real estate.

      The Nigel Moore Award for Youth Programming was presented to Jamie Leigh Gianpoulos and Cláudio Cruz’s What About Our Future?; the Short Documentary Award went to Ain't No Time for Women, directed by Sierra El Abed.

      Honourable mention in the Nigel Moore category went to Yael Bridge's The Big Scary "S" Word, which focuses on socialism in America.