Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Hot Docs 2012 to Open With Canadian Premiere of Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry

Toronto, March 20, 2012 – Hot Docs is excited to announce that the Canadian premiere of Alison Klayman’s AI WEIWEI: NEVER SORRY (USA, China; 91 min) will open the 2012 Festival on Thursday, April 26, at 6:30 p.m. The film will have an encore opening night screening immediately following at 9:30 p.m. Director Alison Klayman will be in attendance at both screenings at the Bloor Hot Docs Cinema, 506 Bloor Street West, to introduce the film and participate in post-screening audience discussions.

“AI WEIWEI: NEVER SORRY is a perfect story of art as a means for change,” says Charlotte Cook, Hot Docs director of programming. “It is an incredibly appropriate opening night selection as it encompasses so many ideas we wanted to highlight throughout this year’s program: from one person standing up for something they believe in, to the power of technology to drive change, to the strength of creativity as a whole. The fact that Ai Weiwei’s wonderfully inspiring nature is so brilliantly captured by a first-time filmmaker just encapsulates so beautifully the importance of supporting people who create art.”

Blurring the boundaries between activism and art, Ai Weiwei has gained international acclaim and a devout following. Artistic consultant for the Beijing National Stadium for the 2008 Olympics and named the most powerful contemporary artist by ArtReview magazine, he gained worldwide attention after his arrest and two-month detention by Chinese authorities last year. With unprecedented access, AI WEIWEI: NEVER SORRY follows China’s most renowned artist and activist; his art, politics and humour revealing a man of unrelenting spirit and defiance, who inspires millions across the world.

AI WEIWEI: NEVER SORRY is director Alison Klayman’s debut feature documentary and it was awarded a Special Jury Prize Documentary at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival. A 2011 Sundance Documentary Fellow, Klayman has been named one of Filmmaker Magazine’s “25 New Faces of Independent Film.”

AI WEIWEI: NEVER SORRY is produced by Alison Klayman and Adam Schlesinger, and executive produced by Karl Katz, Andrew Cohen and Julie Goldman.

Tickets for Hot Docs’ opening night activities, which include a pre-screening reception, the Canadian premiere of AI WEIWEI: NEVER SORRY, and entrance to Hot Docs’ opening night party, are available for purchase at www.hotdocs.ca. In addition to its opening night screenings, the film will also screen on Saturday, April 28, at 4:15 pm at the TIFF Bell Lightbox.

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