Black Ice film still
Black Ice film still

Black Ice

by Hubert Davis
This stunning film about systemic discrimination in Canadian sports is an astounding work of political art that moves gracefully between athletes’ lived experiences and resistance.
2022  ·  1h37m  ·  Canada, United States
About the Film

This incisive, urgent documentary examines the role of Black players in Canadian hockey, from pre-NHL contributions to the game to the struggles against racism that continue to this day. Directed by Oscar nominee Hubert Davis (Hardwood) and executive produced by LeBron James, Drake, and Maverick Carter, Black Ice is a sobering survey of systemic marginalization within one of the world’s most beloved team sports. 

From its formation in Nova Scotia in 1895 to its dissolution in 1930, the Coloured Hockey League was the home for Canada’s best Black players, and the stage for their innovations in how the game was played. The CHL was the first league to see goalies dropping to their knees to make a save, while Eddie Martin of the Halifax Eureka was the first player to deploy the slapshot. Decades after the league dissolved, when Black players finally became part of the NHL, the sense of triumph that accompanied that overdue inclusion was rapidly tempered by racist incidents both on and off the ice — sometimes by toxic fans, sometimes by those within the industry, including fellow players and even coaches.

Davis brings together an incredible roster of players to offer insight and testimony — women and men from both major and minor leagues, including Akim Aliu, Saroya Tinker, Mark Connors, and Wayne Simmonds. Their stories are eye-opening and often painful, but their bravery in sharing their stories, along with their faith in the fundamental beauty and excitement of hockey, infuse Black Ice with a galvanizing sense of hope for a more inclusive future.

Source: Toronto International Film Festival

Upcoming Screenings

Stay tuned for upcoming screenings!

Festivals and Awards
Toronto International Film Festival, People’s Choice Documentary Award
Executive Producer
Aubrey “Drake” Graham, LeBron James, Maverick Carter, Adel “Future” Nur, Noah Segal, Adrian Love, Ajay Virmani, Pauline Dhillon
Vinay Virmani, Scott Moore, Karen Volden, Karen Zylak
Hubert Davis
Chris Romeike
Eamonn O’Connor, Aden Bahadori
Original Music
Simon Poole
Akim Aliu, Wayne Simmons, Matt Dumba, Anthony Duclair, Saroya Tinker, Sarah Nurse, P.K. Subban
Film Related
About the Director

Hubert Davis

Hubert Davis

Hubert Davis received a BA in Film and Communications from McGill University and studied Creative Writing at the University of British Columbia.
His directorial debut Hardwood was nominated for an Academy Award® for Best Documentary (Short Subject) in 2005. The critically acclaimed film aired on PBS P.O.V. and was nominated for an Emmy® in 2006.

Davis’ short film Aruba had its world premier at the 2006 Sundance Film Festival, and won the Grand Jury Award at the Palm Springs International Festival of Short Films 2006.

In 2007, Davis was the recipient of the Don Haig Award given to an emerging filmmaker whose work has bridged the documentary and fiction genres. Davis’ most recent project, Invisible City won the Best Canadian Feature Documentary at the 2009 Hot Docs Film Festival.

Davis’ recent feature documentary, Giants of Africa, premiered at the 2016 Toronto International Film Festival. Hubert has directed commercials and short form docs with clients such as Coca-Cola, Ford, Nike, Pfizer and won Cannes Lions with his work for Volkswagen, Special Olympics Canada, and Hewlett-Packard.

Other films by Hubert Davis