We are live, with new project at nytimes.com/highrise

Indiewire sez “It’s the masterpiece behind Cizek’s larger ‘Highrise’ project.”

Fast Company sez “How Pop-Up Books inspired the Spectacular ‘A Short History of the Highrise’ Series”

CommArts sez: “The user experience is a mix of childlike charm and grown-up journalism”

Vice/Creator’s Project sez “Its accordioned approach to storytelling is also a style that fits a multi-leveled history more appropriately than the static silver screen ever could.”

Wired.com sez “Telling the whole story of the highrise is a tall order (pun-intended), but documentarian Katerina Cizek has created an innovative solution”.

FastCoCreate sez: “Buildings, production values run high…”

Planetizen sez: “Mesmerizing… short masterclass in the 2,500-year global history of vertical living”

NRC Handelsblad in Holland sez: “Indrukwekkende interactieve documentaire over hoogbouw” (“impressive interactive documentary about highrises”)

New HIGHRISE/New York Times collaboration covered by BBC Click, a mention in The Globe and Mail, CBC.ca, Playback, Chinokino, and idocs. See NYT Press Release here.


HIGHRISE cited by Anita Ondine, transmedia guru, as “cutting edge digital storytelling north of the border”  in Hollywood Reporter.

Katerina Cizek,  director of the HIGHRISE Project, listed as Reelscreen’s 12 Trailblazers of 2011, alongside Wim Wenders, and the Channel 4 Commissioning Team.

Screen shot 2011-11-06 at 4.16.16 PM


“The makers of One Millionth Tower reinvented the documentary format” — Angela Watercutter, wired.com

“Damned Cool” — Cory Doctorow, Boing Boing

webpick of the week, January 20, 2012 — Communications Arts

One Millionth Tower documentary elevates the art of HTML5″ — Donald Melanson, Engadget

“Watch This: Here’s how you make a documentary only using HTML5 and webGL graphics” — Adrian Covert, Gizmodo

“Remarkable” Marcus Gee, The Globe and Mail

“Visually spectacular” Indiewire blog, Thompson on Hollywood!

The ongoing collaborative aspects, through the amazing interfaces Cizek and her team have created, are surprising and enlightening.” — Bonnie Tsui, The Atlantic Cities

The Globe and Mail‘s Guy Dixon reports on the adaptation of One Millionth Tower into a public art installation in the Toronto subway system.

Fast Co Create reviews the NFB’s move to digital storytelling.

Spacing magazine on One Millionth Tower and Tower Renewal.

“Eyeopening” — Editorsweblog

Selected by Google as a Chrome Experiment.

“Excellent” — Very Short List

“Brilliant” — Creative Bloq lists 1MT as #6 in Top 25 Javascript projects on the web.

Showcased in a countdown of 2011 documentary news,  PBS’s POV Blog

A video report about One Millionth Tower, on the Electric Playground

“The NFB released a taste of the riches to come” — Metro News / Toronto Star

Interview on BBC’s flagship technology radio show on BBC world service: CLICK, in which Bill Thompson, BBC tech expert, says “It’s completely captivating.”

One Millionth Tower listed as one of the 7 best things of 2011 — AZURE Magazine

“Immeasurably unique” — Openideo

“Mais One Millionth Tower est de loin le plus ambitieux et le plus audacieux des épisodes [de HIGHRISE]. Non content de se laisser diriger par l’internaute, qui se déplace littérelement dans l’image 3D avec les touches fléchées de son clavier, il peut interagir avec l’Internet tout entier. — Ecran of Libération.fr

3-part series on Toronto’s top morning radio show, CBC: Metro Morning and then, an entire 3-hour show, boradcast live from the Kipling site on CBC radio.

“Won’t impress you until you see it in action, and action is what this …is all about.” — PhoneArena.com

Featured in the world’s most visited architecture website, ArchDaily

“Fun and energizing to walk through the virtual landscape”Ethnic Aisle

“Working in a medium that ‘hasn’t been invented yet’… [One Millionth Tower] is utterly compelling.” — Torontoist

One Millionth Tower is … put together beautifully and holds the viewer all the way through. At its core it contains some really simple and transformative ideas about not just documentary design, but community engagement and change.” — Julia Scott-Stevenson, sbs.com.au

“Striking… intriguing…”D-build.

… reveals how urban decay is everyone’s problem. There are a million stories in the high-rise city.” —Azure Magazine

“One Millionth Tower is a turning point for other filmmakers”The Conversation

“Set to revolutionize film as we know it”Urban Times

Cette prouesse technologique se marie admirablement bien avec le point de vue développé par les auteurs… [un] webdoc qui nous plonge dans une douce utopie” — 3WDOC

“At the forefront of… change” — Doc Geeks

These are works that derive their power from the collective weight of overlapping stories and insights” Harvard Crimson

Also reported in Realscreen, TechCrunch, webmonkey, Internazionale, ReadWriteWeb, Maclean’s, Communications Initiative Network, The H, Digital Journal, GNT, Journalism.co.uk, Documentary.net, Urbamedia, DLD, Forwardcities! LiquidTV Neighbourhood Arts Network, La Vanguardia, 150 Mediamakers, and Things are Good. Video of the Week at Cream. Interview at Innovative Interactivity and in french Blog Documentaire. Radio Interview on BBC Radio 5.


We’ve also had some good responses to our 360° documentary OUT MY WINDOW.

We won the International Digital Emmy for Non-Fiction, as covered by cbc.ca, by realscreen, by Variety, by Huffington Post, by CTV News, by Macleans. And another mention in Variety.

We were honoured with a U.K.-based One World Media Award, covered by RealScreen.

We got Boing-Boing-ed.

We’re nominated for a Webby Award, as covered by The National Post, cbc.ca, and The Canadian Press.

Yahoo! News quotes Cizek at Banff World Media Festival, and so does Realscreen.

The Globe and Mail sez: “the stories are so varied and interrelated, the approach so inviting, it seems that she could have gone on indefinitely. What traditional documentary could accomplish that?”

Huffington Post sez “More than 100 people from around the world came together on this project — watch it, be astonished and stay connected as they unveil more features in 2011 (maybe you want to tell your story?). And while “Out My Window” isn’t for sale, you can buy something from the NFB’s online store — help keep documentary filmmaking alive!

We were FWA site of the day.

At Forbes in his Buzz Boom and Sizzle blog, Bill Barol says: “In assembling like a mosaic the static images of tower-dwellers across the world, Cizek honors their stories and creates something that moves, in every sense of the word.”

Interactive Documentary academic, Sandra Gaudenzi, says ” Very frankly: there is no other project at the moment that has such freedom of exploration and uses it as well as Highrise does.”

Vancouver Sun calls Out My Window “the most adventurous [interactive] work the NFB  has been involved in.”

Chicagoist sez “ingenious… produced by the always-awesome National Film Board of Canada…”

Tracy Boyer, at Innovative Interactivity, sez: “It’s been cool seeing panorama technology integrated into multimedia storytelling, and I would argue that this is the best attempt at doing it seamlessly amidst a myriad of other multimedia elements. Make sure to have your volume on for this one – they know the importance of high quality sound and fitting music!”

UK’s Power to the Pixel does an in-depth case study.

The Polis blog sez: “Katerina Cizek’s documentary is a timely reminder that we separate the spatial from the social at our peril. The project wisely ignores a potential division of Global North and Global South, instead sampling stories from residents of diverse cities united by the highrise typology that continues to function as housing for urbanites across the socioeconomic spectrum, encapsulating their individual stories and experiences and offering a chance to take this new blueprint of information as a designer’s brief for the next concrete highrise.”

Nightlife.ca sez: “expansive and ambitious…”

Programmer for Bird’s Eye View Festival U.K., Jemima Gibbons sez: “This award-winning film is a beautiful, poignant mix of intimate stories: all told in the first person, and all revealing powerful emotions: varying degrees of love, hate, joy and despair.”

FlavorPill’s Daily Dose pick of the day: “The artfully arranged interface includes evocative and immersive sound design, offering the multi-sensory impression of being transported from your desktop to a different culture…”

The Hollywood Reporter explains how Out My Window leads off a new initiative at the NFB  to showcase and license interactive projects to other broadcasters around the world.

Carl Wilson, culture and music critic, makes us his web pick of the week at Back to the World, calling it “…beautiful, meditative… really gives meaning to interactivity. Prepare to spend some time exploring it.”

Important music blog, Said the Gramaphone, sez “It’s a brilliant, and very touching project. Go, with half an hour to spare, and check out (at the very least) some of my favourite stories…”

Lavraki blog sez: “This is one of the coolest things I’ve seen in a long while: part film, part sort of choose your own adventure.”

California Home + Design Resource Blog sez: “It’s a fascinating look at what part these architectural behemoths play in segregation and community building, and the effects of design on contemporary life.”

Great review in the popular educational blog, Open Culture.

In-depth interviews at MIT’s Collab Radio, Australia’s SBS Love Factually: part one and part two. Nice interview about the toronto highrise context at EyeWeekly.

Also reviews at Next American City, east of centre, telegraph21, Jawbone.tv, Public Radio Maker’s Quest, Playback Magazine, La Femme Architecte, PSFK, Bombay Flying Club, Sociolography, Visual Journalist, Things are Good, Collab Docs, U Chicago Blog, Stories of our City, Archiculture, Osocio, Curious Mind, Objects, buildings, Situations, 1loveTO, SCOPE, Canadian Centre for Architecture.

Matt Galloway, of CBC-Radio Metro Morning, sez Out My Window is “unbelievable, extraordinary… What I’ve been obsessed with for the last few days… Worth spending a couple of hours with.” Listen to the interview here.

At Forbes in his Buzz Boom and Sizzle blog, Bill Barol says: “In assembling like a mosaic the static images of tower-dwellers across the world, Cizek honors their stories and creates something that moves, in every sense of the word.”

Toronto Life sez: “stunning… Cizek’s project illustrates the power of new media to forge powerful human connections when used creatively. Out My Window rebukes the ethos of technology for technology’s sake: it is a beautiful example of what multimedia filmmaking can and should be. We had trouble tearing ourselves away from the screen.”

Torontoist sez: “Cizek’s project realizes the McLuhanist flattening of medium and message. It also gives life to another of McLuhan’s prophesies, in digitally compacting the experience of citizens of the world into what Cizek describes as a “global highrise.”

The Activist Writer Blog sez: “This is panorama-technology put to perfect use for social awareness.”

Sam Gregory at Witness.org, of NYC, writes about our 360º technology, about it’s potential for human rights advocacy, and the Phnom Penh stories in a post called “Learning from Innovations at the Highrise Project.

A thoughtful, thorough review at Yonge Street blog.

Ontrack blog sez: “Spend some time on the site and feel like you’ve traveled the world over without one airport security check.”

A nice (more academic) perspective at an Interactive Documentary Blog.

AOL tech blog, Switched, calls it a “documentary interactive event (“film” doesn’t quite do it justice).”

We were “one GOOD thing a day” in the city department.

BlogTO sez: “The result is a fascinating interactive mosaic made up of fragmented and non-linear stories that challenge traditional perceptions of the urban experience. Perhaps most admirable is Cizek’s ability to deftly address themes of migration, poverty, and environmentalism without ever losing sight of the lived experience of her film’s subjects.”

Holland’s NRC newspaper reviews us in dutch. Also in Holland, De Pers. In Germany, this blog.

Radio Prague interview in english here.