November 29, 2021

Winnipeg, Man. – On Dec. 1, 2021, Indigenous-focused streaming service APTN lumi, will be adding 11 of Alanis Obomsawin’s films to its lineup. A member of the Abenaki Nation, Obomsawin is an award-winning director and producer, and a distinguished Canadian filmmaker. Obomsawin’s filmography consists of 53 films made throughout her 54-year career at the National Film Board of Canada.

APTN is honoured to feature Officer of the Order of Canada and two-time Governor General Award recipient Obomsawin’s world-renowned documentaries on APTN lumi. These important and relevant films chronicle the lives of, and injustices faced by Indigenous Peoples. APTN lumi’s Alanis Obomsawin collection will feature a compilation of films created over a span of 35 years between 1984 and 2019.

“Whether the film was created in 1984 or 2019, Obomsawin’s documentaries address important Indigenous matters that remain relevant today,” said Monika Ille, CEO of APTN. “From fishing and land rights to water and residential schools, her films address an array of topics that give viewers insight into the lives of Indigenous Peoples in Canada. Audiences will be both moved by Obomsawin’s work and educated about issues that are important to all Canadians.”

“I am very honoured and happy that APTN will be screening a collection of my work,” said filmmaker Alanis Obomsawin. “It’s really wonderful for us to have APTN, which can reach so many of our people all over the country, allowing them to hear our stories. Thank you.”

The collection includes:

1. Jordan River Anderson, The Messenger – Director/Writer/Producer, 2019

The story of Jordan River Anderson, a young Cree boy whose lifelong hospitalization spurred a political fight over the cost of his care. In response to his death, Jordan’s Principle was established, ensuring healthcare access for Indigenous children in Canada.

2. Our People Will Be Healed – Director/Writer/Producer, 2017

Alanis Obomsawin reveals how a Cree community in Norway House has been enriched through the power of education. At the Helen Betty Osborne Ininiw Education Resource Centre, students learn about their history and culture, developing their sense of pride.

3. We Can’t Make the Same Mistake Twice – Director/Writer/Producer, 2016

Documenting a tense nine-year-long legal battle where child and family welfare services of Canada is accused of discrimination, this powerful documentary guides us through the legal system while advocating for Indigenous children’s welfare and rights.

4. Trick or Treaty? – Director/Writer/Producer, 2014

Trick or Treaty? follows the story of Indigenous leaders in Ontario who fight to enforce their treaty rights and protect their lands. In doing so, they honour the memory of their descendants and reveal the complexities of contemporary treaty agreements.

5. Hi-Ho Mistahey! – Director/Writer/Producer, 2013

Alanis Obomsawin tells the story of Shannen’s Dream, a national youth-driven campaign named in honour of Shannen Koostachin. The movement advocates for equitable access to education and safe schools for First Nations children across Canada.

6. The People of the Kattawapiskak River – Director/Writer/Producer, 2012

Residents of Attawapiskat First Nation shed light on the dire living conditions in their community, the history of colonial dispossession behind these circumstances and the ongoing disputes they have with the Canadian government about addressing the crisis.

7. Waban-Aki: People from Where the Sun Rises – Director/Writer/Producer, 2006

After having spent decades tirelessly recording other people’s stories, filmmaker Alanis Obomsawin returns to the village where she was raised to craft a lyrical account of her own people.

8. Is the Crown at War with Us? – Director/Writer/Producer, 2002

In the summer of 2000, Canadians watched in disbelief as federal fisheries waged war on Mi’kmaq fishermen in Burnt Church, N.B. This film outlines the complex roots of the conflict between the Crown and the Mi’kmaq over traditional fishing rights.

9. Kanehsatake: 270 Years of Resistance – Director/Writer/Co-Producer, 1993

When members of the Mohawk Nation in Oka protest a golf course project on their lands, a tense 78-day standoff with provincial police ensues. This historic confrontation grabbed international headlines and seared itself into the Canadian consciousness.

10. Richard Cardinal: Cry from a Diary of a Métis Child – Director/Writer/Co-Producer, 1986

After spending most of his life in foster homes and shelters, Richard Cardinal died by suicide at 17. In this film, excerpts from his diary are woven into a tribute that exposes the systemic neglect of Indigenous children in Canada’s child welfare system.

11. Incident at Restigouche – Director/Writer, 1984

In June of 1981, the Quebec Provincial Police raided Restigouche Reserve on two occasions as part of their efforts to impose fishing restrictions on the Mi’kmaq. This film follows the rising conflicts that ensued over the salmon-fishing rights of the Mi’kmaq.

APTN lumi offers viewers inspiring, enlightening and entertaining stories by, for and about Indigenous Peoples. Audiences can enjoy unprecedented access to an extensive and ever-expanding catalogue of original programming, documentaries, kids’ shows and much more – all told from Indigenous perspectives. Select programs are available in English, French and, unlike other streaming services, a variety of Indigenous languages.

Canadians can subscribe to APTN lumi for $4.99/month for unlimited access to the entire library of content, commercial-free. A free trial is available for all new members. APTN lumi’s monthly fee helps support APTN’s mission to share our Peoples’ journey, celebrate our cultures, inspire our children and honour the wisdom of our Elders.

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