A new hope in the movement
to end violence against women

About the Film

A Better Man is a documentary that compels us to reconsider the root causes of violence against women and expand our focus to include men, if we hope to prevent violence.

“The man who abused me when we were teenagers is now taking responsibility for his actions. One of the things he said was, ‘Attiya, I wish I could have been a better man.’ I’m making this documentary because I believe he, and people like him, can change, and I want to create a space for that to happen. I see our conversation as a starting point to advance the movement to end violence against women.”

– Attiya Khan, Co-Director

Filmmakers

The production team for A Better Man brings years of experience on award-winning, high-quality documentaries. The team includes:

ATTIYA KHAN (Co-Writer, Co-Director) is a Toronto-based feminist, intimate partner violence survivor, and long-time advocate and counselor for abused women and children. Attiya has worked in women’s shelters in Canada and the United States, including running the Child and Youth Services Program at Transition House in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Most recently she worked at YWCA Toronto where she served in a variety of frontline, program management and advocacy roles, including supporting the communications and advocacy team, running a training program on crisis intervention, and administering the December 6th Fund, which offers interest-free loans for women fleeing domestic violence. As a writer, activist and speaker, she has become a presenter and panelist for numerous events and conferences related to domestic violence.

LAWRENCE JACKMAN (Co-Writer, Co-Director) is a Toronto-based filmmaker. Over the past fifteen years he has worked on many award-winning films, focusing primarily on independent documentaries and dramas. He often works as an editorial consultant that includes a long-standing association with the National Film Board of Canada, and is experienced working at critical stages to creatively and structurally bring films to completion.  Both as an editor and in his own filmmaking, he is interested in creative storytelling and pushing genre boundaries.  In 2011 he directed the award-winning How Does It Feel, a documentary musical about the importance of creative fulfillment told through the musical pursuits of a singer with cerebral palsy.

CHRISTINE KLECKNER (Producer) is a producer whose short film Barefoot (2012) premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival, received honourable mention at The Berlinale, and was selected for the Not Short on Talent Showcase at the 2012 Cannes Film Festival.  Prior to that, she produced Wapawekka (2010) which screened at the Toronto International Film Festival, Sundance and the Berlinale. During her time with the National Film Board of Canada, she collaborated on groundbreaking projects including Stories We Tell and the multi-platform Filmmaker-in-Residence. She is an alumni of the National Screen Institute of Canada’s Drama Prize Program. Christine resides in Toronto working freelance in documentary and drama.

JUSTINE PIMLOTT (NFB Producer) is a multi-award-winning producer who began her film career interning with the NFB’s legendary women’s studio, Studio D. She was a co-founder of Red Queen Productions before joining the NFB’s Ontario Studio as a producer. Justine’s productions include Derby Crazy Love, which had a European premiere at Sheffield Doc/Fest 2014; the NFB co-production The Mystery of Mazo de la Roche (recipient of the Yorkton Film Festival’s Golden Sheaf Award for Best Social Issue Documentary), Dish: Women, Waitressing & the Art of ServiceCat City, the Gemini-nominated Girl InsideFag Hags: Women Who Love Gay Men and Punch Like a Girl, as well as Laugh In The Dark, winner of Best Social Issue Doc at Hot Docs.

IRIS NG (Director of Cinematography) is a cinematographer with over a decade of experience collaborating with award-winning filmmakers and artists on over sixty projects in documentary, art, narrative films, series television, commercials, and music videos. Her credits include Stories We Tell directed by Sarah Polley, Herman’s House directed by Angad Bhalla (Emmy Award for Outstanding Arts & Culture Program), and The Ghosts In Our Machine directed by Liz Marshall, as well as films directed by Fredrik Gertten, Rama Rau, Min Sook Lee, Michael McNamara, Martha Burns, Fisher Stevens, Vikram Jayanti, and artists Chris Curreri, and Oliver Husain. Soon to be released are Storyline Entertainment’s League of Exotique Dancers, the NFB’s The Apology, Yap Films’ American Masters, Loretta Lynn: Still A Mountain Girl, and a multi-episode documentary series produced in the U.S. iriscinematography.com

SARAH POLLEY (Executive Producer) is a writer-director whose dramatic features include Away from Her (nominated in 2007 for an Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay, and winner of the 2008 Genie Awards for Best Motion Picture and Achievement in Direction) and Take This Waltz, starring Seth Rogen, Michelle Williams and Sarah Silverman. Her most recent film, Stories We Tell, was awarded Best Documentary by the Toronto Film Critics Association, the New York Film Critics Circle, the National Board of Review and the Los Angeles Film Critics Association. It was also on the shortlist for the 2013 Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature.

ANITA LEE (NFB Executive Producer) leads development and production at the NFB’s Ontario Studio. Anita is a multi-award-winning producer with 20 years’ experience in the industry and founder of the Toronto Reel Asian International Film Festival. As NFB producer since 2005, her credits include some of the most acclaimed and inventive works in recent NFB history, including Sarah Polley’s Stories We Tell. Prior to joining the NFB, Lee produced a slate of award-winning independent films that premiered at international festivals including TIFF, Sundance and Berlin and were theatrically released.

JANE JANKOVIC (TVO Executive Producer) originally joined TVO as senior producer of its Gemini-award winning daily current-affairs program Studio 2 and has been commissioning documentaries since 2007. TVO is a public media organization that informs, inspires, and stimulates curiosity and thought. Commissions focus on social-issue and current-affairs documentaries and digital media projects that focus on contemporary social, political and cultural issues that are of direct relevance to Canadian audiences and promote citizen engagement. Recent examples include Lowdown TracksDavid and MeThe Polar SeaThe Defector: Escape From North KoreaThe Lost HighwayOut of Mind Out of Sight.

JANICE DAWE (Executive Producer) brings to A Better Man years of expertise in producing and financing award-winning documentaries for Canadian and international buyers. Most recently she executive produced Michèle Hozer’s 2016 Canadian Screen Award nominated documentary Sugar Coated which was pre-sold to TVOntario, Canal D and ZDF. From 2005 – 2013 Janice held the senior role of Vice-President Production at White Pine Pictures, one of Canada’s most respected documentary production companies. Her credits as EP include, The Experimental Eskimos (Allan King Award for Excellence in Documentary”), Fight Like Soldiers Die Like Children, and the Gemini-nominated mobile app released documentary series City Sonic. Over her career, Janice has formed strong relationships with the creative community, broadcasters, buyers, financiers and lenders. Janice currently serves on the OMDC Screen-based Industry Advisory Committee and the CMPA’s documentary working group.

KATHY AVRICH-JOHNSON (Executive Producer) – Creative producers turn to Kathy for her valuable insights as well as straightforward and practical approach to addressing the issues, challenges and opportunities of rights acquisitions, co-production, financing, delicate clearances matters and domestic and international distribution. In addition to producing hundreds of hours of drama including the series Rookie Blue and Saving Hope, Kathy was executive producer of Allan King’s last three feature documentaries including the award winning Dying at Grace, Memory for Max Claire Ida and Company and Empz 4 Life. Kathy produced two comedic documentaries through her production company Canadian Accents for the CBC arts strand “Opening Night”. Kathy is the author of two much-appreciated and well-thumbed producer handbooks: Development and Other Production Challenges (published by Telefilm Canada, 2003) Canadian Production Finance (published by the Ontario Media Development Corporation & Telefilm Canada, 1998; revised 2001).

Supporters

Endorsements

Press Room

See the Indiegogo Press Kit HERE
DOWNLOAD PRESS KIT
DOWNLOAD PHOTOS

News Releases

February 26, 2016
Principal photography on the Intervention Productions/National Film Board of Canada (NFB) co-production A Better Man is underway in Toronto

March 8, 2015
Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation donates $25,000 to A Better Man

December 17, 2014
Indiegogo campaign for A Better Man enters its final hours

November 12, 2014
Feist Pledges $10,000 to Indiegogo Campaign for A Better Man

Media Coverage

Torontoist
The Film A Better Man Challenges Abusive Partners to be Accountable
By Rhiannon Russell
August 17, 2016

The Globe and Mail
Film campaign asks women to tweet questions they would ask their abusers
By Zosia Bielski
August 11, 2016

Realscreen
“A Better Man” set for 2017 release
By Kevin Ritchie
February 26, 2016

Playback
Khan nets another $25K for domestic violence doc
By Etan Vlessing
March 9, 2015

The Loop
Words of wisdom from 12 inspiring women who make us proud to be Canadian
By Kevin Naulls
March 6, 2015

The Loop
This woman’s boyfriend abused her for two years, and what she did about it is remarkable
By Corrina Allen
December 5, 2014

Ottawa Citizen
Without Men, Feminism Can’t Stop Violence Against Women
By Angelina Chapin
December 5, 2014

Maclean’s
#Project97
‘I think some men who use violence can change’
As told to Rachel Browne
December 4, 2014

The Toronto Star
How to make a better man
By Edward Keenan
November 30, 2014

SheKnows United Kingdom
How can we help abusive men change?
By Claire Gillespie
November 24, 2014

The Strombo Show with George Stroumboulopoulos
Magnificent 7: #1 Choir!Choir!Choir! / Better Man (1:58:00)
November 23, 2014 

Huffington Post Canada
HuffPost Living, HuffPost Impact
I Asked My Abuser To Talk on Film.  He Said Yes
By Attiya Khan
November 21, 2014

NOW Magazine
T.O. Music Notes: Feist Donates to Documentary about Domestic Abuse
November 19, 2014 

Toronto Film Scene
Crowdfunding Project of the Week: A Better Man
By Prerana Das
November 17, 2014

The National
CBC News
New documentary looks at both sides of domestic violence
By Eli Glasner
November 16, 2014

CBC News
Canadian filmmaker, Attiya Khan, gets celebrity support for film on violence against women
November 15, 2014
Aired on CBC News Network
Also on MSN Entertainment, Yahoo! Canada News

The Purple Fig
“A Better Man” Focuses on the Abuser in the Fight To End Domestic Violence
By Trish Bentley
November 14, 2014

Shedoesthecity.com
‘A Better Man’ Turns the Lens on Abusers
November 13, 2014

Strictly Docs
1, 2, 3, 4…Feist Gave 10,000 More
By Steve Gow
November 13, 2014

Realscreen
Sarah Polley, Leslie Feist back domestic abuse doc
By Etan Vlessing
November 13, 2014

ET Canada
Feist pledges $10,000 To Support a Documentary That Focuses on Violence Against Women
By Dan Macrae
November 12, 2014 

Playback
Sarah Polley, Feist back doc on violence against women
By Etan Vlessing
November 12, 2014 

NOW Magazine
Feist donates $10,000 to film about violence against women
By Kate Robertson
November 12, 2014

The Hollywood Reporter
Feist Backs Indiegogo Campaign for Canadian Sex Abuse Doc
By Etan Vlessing
November 12, 2014

Here and Now Toronto with Gill Deacon
CBC Radio
November 10, 2014
Re-aired on Metro Morning with Matt Galloway on November 13, 2014, and Big City, Small World on November 22, 2014

Resources

Hotlines for men and women:

Toronto Distress Centre for people experiencing emotional distress or in need of crisis intervention and suicide prevention
416-408-4357

Gerstein Crisis Centre Hotline for people who are experiencing a mental health crisis
416-929-5200

Hotlines for women:

Assaulted Women’s Helpline for women who have experienced any form of abuse
1-866-863-0511

Fem’aide for Francophone women experiencing violence
1-877-336-2433

The Toronto Rape Crisis Centre/Multicultural Women Against Rape Crisis Line will assist anyone who has been raped, sexually assaulted or abused, anyone who has had unwanted sexual touching, incest survivors, survivors of childhood and adult sexual assault and family or friends
416-597-8808

Hotline for kids:

Kids Help Phone for young people who want to talk about a wide range of issues that include everything from struggles with relationships, to moving to a new school, to cyberbullying, abuse, and mental health concerns
1-800-668-6868

Canadian intervention programs for men:

Bridges Institute

Violence against women resources:

Ontario
Canada

Links for men who want to take action and be part of the solution to ending violence against women:

Male Allies Against Sexual Violence

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