The Suicide Tourist Goes Inside the World Of Legally Assisted Suicide, Nov. 24 on CTV
— Academy Award-Winning filmmaker John Zaritsky directs CTV Original Documentary —
Toronto, ON (November 16, 2007) – How far would you go to die? CTV examines the controversial issue of assisted suicide in the broadcast premiere of the award-winning CTV Original Documentary The Suicide Tourist on Saturday, November 24 at 7 p.m. ET (visit CTV.ca to confirm local broadcast times). The two-hour feature documentary from acclaimed Canadian director and Academy Award winner John Zaritsky was named the top Canadian film by audiences at Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival earlier this year.
Over the course of a year, Zaritsky had exclusive access to the controversial Swiss organization Dignitas – a place foreigners turn to when seeking legally assisted suicide. While Swiss law allows anyone to be helped to die, Dignitas is the only place that extends this right to foreigners. No matter where they are from, or their state of health, Dignitas believes that everyone of sound mind should have the right to kill themselves – if their wish to die has been held a significant period of time.
In The Suicide Tourist, Zaritsky follows the stories of several people who have made the controversial decision to end their lives, and have decided that Dignitas can help them achieve their wishes. This includes a Vancouver couple in their early 70s who have travelled to Dignitas with the desire to end their lives together. George has a deteriorating heart condition and Betty has decided to die with her husband – despite her perfect health. Also at Dignitas, is American Craig Ewert. Fighting a motor-neuron disease, the 59-year-old is determined not to live in a state of deteriorating health and, with his wife at his side, wants to end his life on his own terms. .
“Assisted suicide is a tremendously sensitive and emotional issue, and the people at the centre of the storm tend to be ignored,” said filmmaker John Zaritsky. “These stories have touched me on a personal level and I hope this film will help others to better understand the difficult choices these people have made.”
The Suicide Tourist is a production of Point Grey Pictures in association with CTV. Producer is Terence McKeown and Director is John Zaritsky. Louise Clark is CTV’s Vice President of Program Development. Bob Culbert is Vice-President of CTV Documentaries. Robert Hurst is President of CTV News and Current Affairs. Susanne Boyce is President, Content, Creative and Channels, CTV Inc.
CTV, Canada’s largest private broadcaster, offers a wide range of quality news, sports, information, and entertainment programming. It has the number-one national newscast, CTV National News With Lloyd Robertson, and is the number-one choice for prime-time viewing. CTVglobemedia Inc. is Canada’s premier multi-media company which owns CTV Inc. and The Globe and Mail. CTV Inc. also owns radio stations across the country, and leading national specialty channels. Other CTVglobemedia investments include an interest in Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment, and in Dome Productions, a North American leader in the provision of mobile high definition production facilities. More information about CTV may be found on the company website at www.ctv.ca.