Best of Hot Docs: I Am Big Bird

(USA, 2014, 85 mins, DCP)
Classification: PG


I Am Big Bird tells the extraordinary story of Caroll Spinney, the whimsical and endearing man behind Sesame Street’s beloved Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch. While inspiring generations of kids for more than 40 years, not much has been known about the man inside the bird. Now, with Spinney approaching 80, we get to peek at how the magic was made. With an epic love story, a life-changing adventure in China and an almost-trip to space aboard the Challenger, both Caroll Spinney and his feathered friend Big Bird have had some incredible adventures and tragedies. Through an extensive collection of home movies and behind-the-scenes Sesame Street footage, the filmmakers capture an intimate portrait. If your heart warmed to the big yellow bird that entertained generations, your heart will melt in this loving portrait of the creative genius who brought him to life. (Heather Haynes)

“3.5/4 stars: thoroughly entertaining…a joy to watch.” Globe and Mail

“The triumphant tearjerker of this year’s Hot Docs film festival…speaks to the heart of a viewer and brings out the softie in everyone” POV Magazine

“One of the most emotionally effective performing arts docs that’s ever been made." Dork Shelf