‘Time for Ilhan’ Takes Lead in Hot Docs Audience Award Contenders

Time for Ilhan


By Pat Mullen

Another day another leader! This dynamic year for Hot Docs contenders gets another shuffle as Silence Breakers doc Time for Ilhan debuts at #1. Directed by Norah Shapiro, the film is a portrait of Ilhan Omar, the Muslim Somali-American up-and-coming politician fighting the adversity and xenophobia to land a seat in the House of Representatives. The film bumped the Canadian short doc Prince’s Tale down to #2, while Won’t You Be My Neighbor? and Transformer hold steady at #3 and #4, respectively.

Also new to the race, and debuting somewhat lower than expected given its energetic premiere last night, is the guide dog doc Pick of the Litter. The film had the audience clapping throughout the screening as puppies Phil, Poppet, Patriot, Potomac, and Primrose tackled the coursework required to become guide dogs for the blind. The film debuted at #13.

On the Canadian front, Transformer continues to hold a steady lead over The Accountant of Auschwitz while Primas debuts in third (#7 overall).

The top 20 films in the Hot Docs Audience Award rankings are:

  1. Time for Ilhan
  2. Prince’s Tale
  3. Won’t You Be My Neighbor?
  4. Transformer
  5. A Woman Captured
  6. On Her Shoulders
  7. The Accountant of Auschwitz
  8. Primas
  9. Bathtubs over Broadway
  10. The Game Changers
  11. The Oslo Diaries
  12. The Silver Branch
  13. Pick of the Litter
  14. Minding the Gap
  15. The Silence of Others
  16. Letter from Masanjia
  17. Exit Music
  18. The Guardians
  19. Warrior Women
  20. Slut or Nut: The Diary of a Rape Trial

Hot Docs runs April 26 to May 6. Please visit hotdocs.ca for more info.

Visit the POV Hot Docs Hub for more coverage from this year’s festival!