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This short doc collection, commissioned by Hot Docs, highlights ordinary Canadians doing extraordinary things to make their communities better places. Launched in 2021, eight filmmaking teams from across the country were selected to create short films about bold and unlikely changemakers who inspire us to jump in and get involved in civic issues close to our homes and hearts. Citizen Minutes premiered at the 2021 Hot Docs Festival before screening at several Canadian and international festivals and being broadcast on Crave.

View Citizen Minutes Series 1

Series 2 Projects

The second Citizen Minutes series will launch at the 2023 Hot Docs Festival, and then screen across Canada and internationally.  It will then join the Citizen Minutes collection for year-round streaming.

D: Sean Stiller
Joleen Mitton, a Néhiyaw woman and the founder of Vancouver Indigenous Fashion Week (VIFW), shows how she build community using fashion, as she works to undo years of trauma–in herself and others.

D: Cat Mills
A couple of activists try to put the mute button on Noise Pollution in Toronto.

D: Kelly Zemnickis, Cass Gardiner
Despite a tumultuous upbringing that would break most, Janelle Niles confronts being Black and Mi'kmaw head-on, embracing her biracial experience and two-spirit identity, while using stand-up to heal and usher in a new era of inclusive Canadian comedy.

D: Josiane Blanc
Teen youth activist collective La Voix des Jeunes Compte try to make meaningful change to school board policy across Quebec.

MIND CHECK 1,2 1,2
D: Ian Keteku
A viral rapper uses his voice to uplift young people struggling with mental health.

D: Sara Ben-Saud
A portrait of the Dépanneur Sylvestre, an atypical place that aims to break down isolation for members of the displaced Gatineau community.

D: Farhiya Ahmed
The first all-female Muslim softball league in North America empowers women through sports in a community where women traditionally don't take part.

Series 2 Producers

Hot Docs is thrilled to welcome John Choi and Lisa Rideout as producers of the second series of Citizen Minutes

John Choi  최성호  Seong-ho (he/him) is a Canadian Korean filmmaker, producer and director telling stories for over 25 years. John is a critical thinker who believes in the ability for film to impact positive societal change. He is an advocate for equality, diversity and inclusion, and works to advance the careers of new, emerging film directors through mentorship and guidance in helping them to hone their craft. He is a member of the Directors Guild of Canada (DGC) and his advocacy work includes the Hot Docs/Netflix Accelerator Program as a mentor working with emerging fellows. He was also selected to contribute to the 2022 Creative Producers Accelerator Think Tank (CPATT) responsible for creating a federal report to surface systemic discrimination witnessed in marginalized BIPOC & disabled groups in the film industry. John was also recently guest panel and juror for the 2022 DMZ Industry Docs Film Festival and juror for 2022 Tokyo Docs Documentary Film Festival. John recognizes how privileged he is to be immersed in the global documentary film community and to be able to support new and exciting talent and stories being told all around the world. 

John’s experience in both scripted films, series and documentaries includes The Eleven A&E's six-part factual true crime series and CBC Docs POV Spaceman. His passion project is the feature documentary film Lost & Found, co-produced by NHK Japan, SBS Australia, Shaw Media, and the doc series YouTube Originals K-Pop Evolution. John’s latest work is Netflix Originals three-part docu-series The Raincoat Killer and the new VICE series, which premiered in August 2022, Dark Side of Comedy.

Lisa Rideout 
is an award-winning director who makes character-driven films with a focus on women who have forged their own paths outside of societal norms. She has directed content for NETFLIX, CRAVE, CBC and VICE. Alongside Banger Films and Corus Entertainment, Lisa recently finished directing and producing the documentary feature Sex with Sue about renowned sex expert Sue Johanson. She previously directed an episode for Netflix’s series This is Pop with Banger Films. Her films have garnered multiple Oscar qualifying awards including Best Short Documentary at the LA Film Festival, Best Documentary Short at the Brooklyn Film Festival, the Canadian Screen Award for Best Documentary Short and a Grand Prize at the Rhode Island International Film. Lisa founded her production company Lifted Eyes Media in 2013. She has her MFA in Documentary Media from Ryerson University and her MA in Critical Media and Cultural Studies from the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS). Lisa is currently represented by Meridian.

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