Master Series Class with Editor Nick Hector

Wednesday, November 23

This intimate professional development series focuses on the craft and art of documentary media. Celebrated documentary filmmakers and other acclaimed pros (including editors, cinematographers and sound design) share their expertise and experiences. For more on the DOC Institute’s Masters Series, click here

Turning Chaos into Story

“I’ve come to see the editing room as a place where dreamers, artists and visionaries attempt to reverse the laws of thermodynamics, wrestling film chaos into order.” – Nick Hector

As a frequent collaborator of preeminent documentarians such as Allan King, Yvan Patry, and Sturla Gunnarsson, award-winning producer/editor Nick Hector brings a unique approach and powerful sense of story to the edit suite. His working notes, journals, and anecdotes offer an essential, behind-the-scenes view into the messy, complicated creation of some of the seminal films in the documentary canon.

With 30 years of editing and more than 100 films under his belt, Nick’s Master Class will take us through the beats of a film’s life cycle, including putting on the director’s glasses, playing the role of “first audience” and revealing the story’s spine through a careful reduction process. Using practical advice, editing theory, war stories, and personal journal excerpts, Nick Hector will give a fascinating look at his working process with some of Canada’s visionary filmmakers – each with vastly different styles, approaches, and sensibilities.

Don’t miss this rare look into the mind and process of an editing master.

The Master Class will be moderated by award-winning filmmaker, journalist and author Sun-Kyung Yi.

Date: Wednesday, November 23, 2016,  7:00pm – 9:00pm (Doors at 6:30pm)
Location: Camera Bar, 1028 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6J 1H6
Price: DOC Members: $40 / Non-members: $55  / Students (with valid I.D.): $30  / LIFT Members: $40 /  CCE Members: $40


Nick Hector is a HotDocs and multi-Gemini, DGC and CCE Award winning Canadian film editor and Genie Award nominated producer. An inaugural member of the Canadian Cinema Editors, Hector’s work has been screened at TIFF, Sundance, The Museum of Modern Art, Berlin, The Smithsonian, HotDocs and many more.

Hector collaborated with legendary filmmaker Allan King and exclusively cut his films during the last decade of King’s career. He won a Gemini for editing King’s Top Ten Canadian Film and Gemini Award winning Dying at Grace which TIFF described as “one of the best films ever made in this country”.  Grace and Memory (another collaboration with King) have been added to the prestigious Criterion Collection. 

In 1986 Hector began his career as the youngest editor in the 40-season history of CBC’s current affairs flagship program The Fifth Estate. Hector focused on long form non-fiction in the early 90’s and won the Hot Docs Best Editing Award for Yvan Patry’s Hand of God in 1996. He received a Gemini in 1998 for his work on Patry’s Hot Docs Best of Festival and Chalmers Award winner Chronique d’un genocide announce. In 2009, he won a Gemini for Sturla Gunnarsson’s Air India 182, making him the only editor to be awarded three Gemini Awards for documentary editing.

Hector cut Gunnarsson’s Force of Nature in 2010 which won the People’s Choice Award at TIFF, the CCE Award for Best Doc Editing and the DGC Award for Excellence in Documentary. Hector won his 2nd CCE award in 2012 for Sun Kyung Yi’s Echoes. In 2015, Hector edited his 10th TIFF presentation, Avi Lewis’s adaptation of the Naomi Klein best seller This Changes Everything. Most recently, Hector edited Matt Gallagher’s How to Prepare for Prison, Hector’s 15th film at HotDocs.


Sunny is an award-winning independent filmmaker, journalist and author. President of Aysha Productions Inc., Sunny and husband John Haslett Cuff have together written, produced and directed more than fifteen films, including Thai Girls, Divorce What I See, Crimes of the Heart: Adultery, and Actuality: The Art and Life of Allan King — all of which have premiered at the Hot Docs Film Festival. Her latest documentary Echoes — premiering at the Montreal Film Festival and later broadcast on TVO — features stories of mothers in China who were forced to give up their babies under the country’s one-child policy.

In 1994, Sunny was the first Canadian journalist to gain unprecedented access to North Korea, which she chronicled in her book Inside the Hermit Kingdom. She also contributed several radio documentaries for CBC’s IDEAS. In 2009, in the spirit of giving back to the community that continues to generously support her work, Sunny founded and created the Documentary Filmmaking Institute (DFI) for Seneca College to mentor and train future generation of storytellers.

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