Back Home Again makes its world premier

Fort McMurray Wood Buffalo Economic Development and Tourism (FMWBEDT), together with project partners, is excited to share the world premier dates for Back Home Again. Back Home Again will debut on October 2nd & 3rd, 2021 at the 35th Edmonton International Film Festival (EIFF) – an OSCAR® qualifying festival.

The Back Home Again trailer was officially released by EIFF on September 18, 2021 and can be watched here:

Back Home Again, an animated short film with an all-star voice cast, aims to build mental health awareness across Canada and around the world. This film was inspired by Fort McMurray Wood Buffalo’s community resiliency after the 2016 Horse River Wildfire - one of the largest wildfire evacuations in Canadian history.

Local Writer and Director Michael Mankowski created Back Home Again to show the world how a community could come together and rebuild. “My intention was to have a local showing prior to the world premier; however, escalating COVID restrictions made it too difficult at this time,” says Mankowski. “The number one goal of this short film is to start conversations about mental health, resilience, hope and community – screening at EIFF will help as many people as possible watch the film safely.”

Following four live theatre screenings, Back Home Again will be available for virtual screening October 4-31, 2021. For the EIFF screening schedule and tickets visit:

“The world premier is an exciting milestone for this art project,” says Kevin Weidlich, President & CEO of FMWBEDT. “Through the film, the world will learn that Fort McMurray Wood Buffalo is a diverse place with families–full of compassion, kindness and strength. Back Home Again will help change the broader narrative of this region and share some of the reasons why we’re proud to call Fort McMurray Wood Buffalo home.”

“Sharing this story of resiliency with the global community is important,” says Amanda Holloway, Executive Director of Canadian Mental Health Association Wood Buffalo. “Natural disasters and COVID-19 continue to have a major impact on people’s mental health. World Mental Health Day is October 10th and Back Home Again is a powerful tool that can support mental health conversations.”

“I am humbled by the overwhelming support and all-star talent this project has been honoured with,” says Mankowski. “I would especially like to pay tribute to the late Ed Asner and Norm Macdonald for bringing to life the character voices of Edward Lionbridge and Grandpaws in the film.”

Back Home Again