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IMAX film fest returns to the biggest screen of its kind in B.C.


Where: Royal B.C. Museum, 675 Belleville St.

When: March 3-26

Tickets: $11.95 per screening ($49 for a festival pass) from

IMAX Victoria is home to the largest movie screen in the province, but it’s also a technological marvel with 12,000 watts of power and 12 channels of surround sound.

Now, after a two-year break, a festival designed to showcase the theatre’s vast capabilities has returned.

The IMAX Victoria Film Festival opens Friday. Eight films are on tap through March 26, including three feature-length documentaries. Animal Kingdom: A Tale of Six Families, will have its IMAX Victoria première during the three-week event.

The festival has come a long way in recent years. The theatre inside the Royal B.C. Museum upgraded to a 4K laser-projection system in 2016, becoming the first IMAX theatre with such a system in the province and one of only 14 in the world at the time. The theatre has long been a popular attraction for both IMAX-specific productions and big budget Hollywood fare, and tickets sales for the festival are expected to be strong.

Adding to the interest is one of the most popular films to ever screen at IMAX Victoria, the 1988 documentary, Beavers, which is being included on the program at the upcoming festival. Beavers won the People’s Choice Vote in an online contest leading up to the event. “We’re certainly seeing a huge buzz around this year’s film festival,” box office manager Colin Hardie said in a statement. “It’s exciting to welcome it back.”

Other films that will be shown March 3–26 include Oceans: Our Blue Planet, Hidden Universe and Superpower Dogs.

A trio of feature-length films, The Scattering of Man (March 3, 11 and 19), Haida Modern (March 4, 12 and 17), and Unarchived (March 5, 10 and 18) are big additions to the program, and will feature guest speakers during opening night of each full-length documentary.

The Scattering of Man director Luke Gleeson and director of photography Tim Cote will appear March 3, while Haida Modern director Charles Wilkinson will attend March 4. There is a big buzz surrounding Unarchived — a film largely shot on Vancouver Island —as co-directors Hayley Gray and Elad Tzadok will join Dr. Tzu-I Chung (Curator of History, Royal B.C. Museum), Genevieve Weber (Archivist, BC Archives), and artist Lou-Ann Neel (Artist, Arts Advocate) at the screening on March 5.

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