Hot Docs 2022: Qs à la mode with… Gavin Fitzgerald (Million Dollar Pigeons)

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Director Gavin Fitzgerald’s Million Dollar Pigeons explores the world of competitive pigeon racing, and the efforts of assorted “pigeon fanciers” from around the globe hoping to take home top prize at an international event in South Africa. We posed our Qs à la mode to Gavin, and here’s what he shared!

If I had to describe my film using only five adjectives, they would be: “Charming, outlandish, dramatic, super-duper, pigeons!”

The thing that surprised me most about my film’s subject(s)/topic was: “The sky-high prices of these precious birds. When I started the project, the most expensive pigeon in the world was worth $300,000, but by the time I’d finished it was up to $2 mil.”

My favorite moment/scene/sequence in my film is: “I have a soft spot in my heart for the local Irish pigeon club. To watch those unique characters argue and talk ‘pigeon waffle’ was incredibly entertaining. They are the last of a dying breed.”

The toughest part of the whole shoot was: “Shooting half of the film remotely was incredibly challenging, but made possible with the help of talented filmmakers from around the world.”

My most invaluable piece of doc-making gear was/is: “Sun cream. Without it, I’d be scorched!”

My go-to, get-me-through snack of choice for long shoots or epic editing sessions is: “Protein bars help avoid hangry directors.”

Another Hot Docs 2022 film I’m excited to see is: “An incredible lineup, but shout out to fellow Irish filmmakers behind Sinead O’Connor: Nothing Compares. :)”

Ready to flock to Gavin’s film, or just learn more about it?
Get the scoop, and your tickets, here!


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