Home Vancouver Monthly Calendar Festivals and Events in Vancouver in 2023 DOXA Documentary Film Festival

DOXA Documentary Film Festival

Doxa Film Festival

The DOXA Documentary Film Festival features screenings of captivating documentaries in Vancouver. Last year it happened as both a virtual and drive-in event.

Dates for the festival in 2022 were May 5th to 15th. That year the festival took place as a hybrid event with both in-person and online films. In 2023 the films run from May 4th to 14th.


Vancouver’s DOXA Documentary Film Festival

The DOXA Documentary Film Festival is an annual event that showcases creative documentaries to audiences in Vancouver. The event is put together by The Documentary Media Society which is a non-profit organization based in Vancouver.

The festival has been running since 2001. In normal years it features public screenings, live discussions, forums and more. Various awards are usually up for grabs too, as a panel of judges critique all the documentaries and decide on the winners each year.

In 2021, the DOXA Documentary Film Festival happened as an online and drive-in event between May 6th and 16th. The festival took place from May 5th until the 15th in 2022, with both online and in-person screenings.

In 2023 the DOXA Documentary Film Festival runs from May 4th to 14th. Additional details are to be confirmed. For an idea of what to expect, continue reading for information from last year.


DOXA Film Festival
Drive-in Movies During the Pandemic


Hybrid DOXA 2022 Festival

Similar to the last couple years the 2022 DOXA Documentary Film Festival took place in a modified format due to the coronavirus pandemic.

In 2022 there were nearly 80 films with 55 feature documentaries as well as a number of short documentaries. Live and pre-recorded special events like question and answer sessions and social events were also available.

All of the films were available to watch online during the run of the festival. They were also all shown in-person at various venues including at the Vancity Theatre (a.k.a. the VIFF Centre or Vancouver International Film Festival Centre).


Tickets and How to Watch

It was possible to watch any and all of the 2022 DOXA films both online and in-person. Because the movies screened had not been assessed by Consumer Protection BC, everyone who saw them in-person had to be ages 18+ and a member of The Documentary Media Society. A membership cost $2 and the card had to be shown at the theatre.

On top of the membership (which you needed to just buy once) tickets for in-person screenings cost $15 for adults. Seniors and students cost $13. You could have also bought a five-ticket pack for $65 which was valid for any five non-special presentation screenings.

The online screenings worked a little differently in 2022. Each film could be watched at any point from May 5th to 15th, but once admission was purchased it was only valid for 48 hours. It cost $10 to watch a film or $8 for seniors and students.

For those who wanted to see as many movies as possible there was the online pass. This cost $75 and included access to every movie the festival offered in 2022. For each one you had 48 hours from when you pushed play to finish it and the films were all available for one viewing.

Note: Online content of the 2022 festival was only accessible to people in Canada. Prices above excluded additional fees and were subject to change.


2022 Special Presentations

There were four special presentations in 2022. These films were screened along with a Q&A discussion with the filmmakers, giving more insight into their content and the production process.

Below were the special presentation films in 2022.

  • Fire of Love – the story of two volcanologists who explore potentially dangerous sites all over the world.
  • Love in the Time of Fentanyl – a documentary covering the work of the Overdose Protection Society in Vancouver over the last few years.
  • Dear Jackie – an exploration of Black life in Montreal, filmed in black and white and created as an ode to Jackie Robinson.
  • Doug and the Slugs and Me – a biography of Doug Bennett, an East Vancouver musician, created by a childhood best friend of one of Bennett’s children.


Doxa Film Festival Outside Vancity Theatre
Vancity Theatre / VIFF Centre


2022 Full Programming

The 2022 in-person screenings took place at four different venues in Vancouver. They were the Vancouver Playhouse, the Cinematheque, the VIFF Centre (Vancity Theatre) and the SFU Goldcorp Centre for the Arts.

Within the dozens of films on offer there were multiple curated programs. One of them was French French, which showed work by directors Mariana Otero and François Caillat as well as newer French artists. Another was MÈRE. GRANDMOTHER. BABUSHKA., which explored the role and various representations of the “Grandmother Figure” in film.

There were also various in-person events held throughout the run of the festival. The majority of them took place at either the SFU World Arts Centre or The Post at 750. These included panel discussions, lectures, workshops and more with filmmakers and other festival members.

For the full schedule of in-person film screenings and events click 2022 programming.


Other Information

For more information about the festival, visit the official DOXA Festival website.

Other film festivals that take place at other times of the year in Vancouver include the following:

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