Expired June 28, 2020 6:59 AM
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2 films + livestream in package
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In 2013, when Canadian documentary luminary Peter Wintonick passed away, he left behind a dusty box of over 300 tapes. Labelled “Utopia,” the tapes were shot by Peter over a period of 15 years as he traveled the world alone, in between projects. When his daughter Mira uncovers the tapes, she begins to trace her father’s footsteps in an attempt to complete his final film. In the archival footage, we see a curious Peter, bulky old version of Don Quixote in hand, as he interviews people around the world. His quest to discover places where anyone might find happiness is a poetic and playful one.

Given the uncertainty around us, made even more pressing by the recent pandemic, Wintopia offers a rare glimpse of hope. Expertly weaving her father’s collection of video tapes with thoughtful and candid narration, and highlighted by a whimsical score, Wintopia is many things at once: an ode to documentary filmmaking, a celebration of family, and the beginnings of a road map generating a new vision for the future. Reflecting on her process, Mira says, “Normally when someone dies, our conversation with them comes to an end. With Wintopia, a new conversation between me and my dad began. It felt like one last chance to understand him. To be close to him. What a gift.” A gift for us, as well. 

A filmmaker as passionate about his work as he was about social change, Peter Wintonick remains a pillar of the Canadian documentary scene. Perhaps most famous for his 1992 film Manufacturing Consent: Noam Chomsky and the Media, he received the Governor General’s Award in Visual and Media Art in 2006 among many other accolades. Ahead of his time, when dial-up internet speeds were the norm, Peter founded what he dubbed the Virtual Film Festival in the mid-1990s. We’re honoured to open our very own “virtual film festival” with Burt-Wintonick’s heartfelt ode to her father.   

Wintopia begins streaming on June 18 and a live moderated Q+A with director Mira Burt-Wintonick and special guests is planned for June 20 at 7:00 pm. To access the live stream go to "Wintopia Q&A" on the right hand side menu of this page. The livestream will also be available on Facebook Live on DOXA's Facebook page.


As our festival comes to an end, on Friday June 26 at 7pm PT, we’d like to invite the documentary community to join us in raising to glass for Peter. Please bring your anecdotes and let’s come together to celebrate Peter and the documentary community that he so fiercely loved and advocated for. For more information and register, click here.

  • Year
  • Runtime
    88 minutes
  • Country
  • Director
    Mira Burt-Wintonick