Illusions of Control to Premiere at Hot Docs 2019

We’re delighted to announce that Illusions of Control will have its World Premiere in the Canadian Spectrum competition at Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival on April 28th, 2019.

Illusions of Control is the fourth documentary feature from award-winning director Shannon Walsh, who premiered H2Oil (2009), and St-Henri the 26th of August (2011) at previous Hot Docs Festivals.

A meditation on the resilience of the human spirit in the face of crisis, the film follows five women in different parts of the world as they navigate personal and environmental disasters.

Illusions of Control was scored by Oscar-nominated composer Owen Pallett.

We hope you’ll join us at Hot Docs.

For more information:

John Minh Tran Nominated for CSC Award

Congratulations to John Minh Tran, Director of Photography for Notwithstanding, who's been nominated for a Canadian Society of Cinematographers Award for his gorgeous work on the film in the Docudrama category. Notwithstanding was created by Patrick Reed and Andréa Schmidt for In the Name of All Canadians, a compilation of short films produced by Hot Docs.

John, we'll be cheering for you on April 14th.

Illusions of Control

We're delighted that Illusions of Control, written and directed by Shannon Walsh and produced by What Escapes Production, is among the films receiving support through Telefilm Canada's Theatrical Documentary Program. And we're proud to be in such fine company as we move into a new year. Thanks to Telefilm and to our distributor Cinema Politica.

Read the full Telefilm press release:

Illusions of Control  , a feature-length documentary written and directed by Shannon Walsh.

Illusions of Control, a feature-length documentary written and directed by Shannon Walsh.

The Rollback

My latest episode for Fault Lines examines the Trump administration’s sweeping rollback of environmental regulations, and asks what it might cost American communities. The full episode is linked below.

Thanks to correspondent Josh Rushing, DP Joel Van Haren and editor Warwick Meade, and to Paul Abowd for additional photography and a long drive. All credit to the members of team Fault Lines who lent support at crucial moments. There really is no kinder team in television.


Some press...

Our short speculative doc, Notwithstanding, premiered as part of the Hot Docs compilation In the Name of All Canadians earlier this week. 

From The Globe and Mail: " impressively curated selection of six short documentaries that take a serious, sometimes heartbreaking look at this country we call home [...]. A standout is Patrick Reed and Andrea Schmidt’s contribution, Notwithstanding, which imagines the potential casualties of the Charter’s now rarely discussed clause."

Full review: "In the Name of All Canadians is both Engaging and Difficult to Watch"


Speculative non-fiction is something I've been interested in making for a number of years. So I'm extremely happy to have the opportunity to do so with collaborator (and award-winning filmmaker) Patrick Reed. We're working on a short for a compilation commissioned by HotDocs, which is the first original film HotDocs has ever commissioned. 

It's a film inspired by Section 33 of Canada's Charter of Rights and Freedoms, the Notwithstanding clause.  Without getting into the details, we imagine a dystopian and unsettlingly familiar scenario in which the clause is used to weaponize the Charter against itself.

The entire compilation will premiere on June 28, 2017.

You can read more about the project here.