Meet our featured documentary film makers:
Alanis Obomsawin, of Abenaki descent
YouTube -Dr. Alanis Obomsawin, O.C. – UBC Vancouver 2010 Honorary Degree Recipient
Q: What are your thoughts on Aboriginal filmmaking today? Do you think these films are being used effectively as a tool for social change?
A: A lot of young people are working in film now, and there’s a lot going on in the communities and in the cities. And there’s APTN (Aboriginal Peoples Television Network), which shows everyone’s work if it’s broadcast quality. It’s a very exciting time.
Just the fact that APTN exists, and that Aboriginal films air on other channels, proves that storytelling is very much out there. And it does create change. More and more people are watching APTN, even those who are not necessarily First Nations people. They learn so much by watching these different stories. It’s a way of educating.
Full NFB interview: “Alanis Obomsawin Retrospective”
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Audrey Huntley, of Anishinabe descent
When I was 18 years old I went on a two month backpacking trip through Europe that turned into 18 years. I discovered free education in Germany and ended up writing my masters on Native women’s writing as a tool of resistance in decolonisation. After a while I knew that I needed to come back to Turtle Island. I initially was just going to come back for a year but then I ended up in Vancouver’s Downtown East Side and started working with the Aboriginal Women’s Action Network. One of the amazing things we did was the Journey for Justice in 2000. We rafted from Prince George to Vancouver over two weeks and we held focus groups on violence against women and children in communities along the Fraser River.