Christy Garland


Christy Garland has directed documentary features, drama and comedy shorts and several short documentaries. She is based in Toronto, but has co-produced her last three feature documentary films with the Nordic countries. She focuses on compelling, intimate, character-driven stories that unfold over time, with very little use of interviews or voice over. Her films fuse observational documentary storytelling with narrative technique, following stories that deliver strong dramatic development, universally felt themes and poignant character transformation.

She is currently directing the feature length documentary WHAT WALAA WANTS, produced by twice Academy Award nominated producers Final Cut for Real in Denmark (The Act of Killing, Look of Silence). It is supported by the Danish Film Institute and the National Film Board of Canada, and just received the prestigious Gucci Tribeca Documentary Fund (AOL Charitable Foundation Award) and will premiere in 2018. 

Christy also worked with Final Cut on the award-winning documentary THE BASTARD SINGS THE SWEETEST SONG (Canada/Denmark) which garnered rave reviews at its theatrical premiere appearing on the documentary Channel and Netflix: Globe&Mail: “unclassifiable...echoing the work of Bresson and the Dardennes”; Film Threat: the most poignant true story ever told”, National Post: “heart shattering” and Now Magazine : “cinematic gold.”

CHEER UP (Finland/Canada), her third feature documentary, a coming-of-age film about teenagers
on the worst cheerleading team in Finland, premiered to sold-out audiences at Hot Docs 2016, and has so far appeared at 20 international film festivals including DOC NYC, Edinburgh IFF, Reykjavik IFF, Calgary IFF, Helsinki IFF , soon at SF Indiefest, and Tempo Doc Fest in Stockholm, among others.
iD-VICE called it “a biting portrait of young womanhood” Indiewire: Top 13 not to miss at DOC NYC” Extensive features/interviews in New York Times/Women in the World called it “deliberate and gentle”; Globe and Mail: “a great deal of courage in the film’s refusal of pat stories about underdog victoriesToronto Star “far from a zero to hero story there is nothing predictable in Cheer Up...”