Telefilm Canada and APTN celebrate Aboriginal filmmaking


15 feature-film projects are selected under the Featuring Aboriginal Stories Program

Montréal, October 8, 2009 – Telefilm Canada, in partnership with the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network (APTN), is delighted to announce that 15 projects have been selected under the Featuring Aboriginal Stories Program. Twenty-seven projects from all regions of the country were submitted for the June 29, 2009 deadline. Participants will benefit from a combination of training, professional development and personalized mentorship activities, and whenever applicable receive a development advance.

“The quality of the selected projects highlights the creativity and vitality of Aboriginal filmmakers across Canada,” said Sheila de La Varende, Director of National and International Business Development. “This year, the Featuring Aboriginal Stories Program is providing support to experienced as well as emerging filmmakers and is funding a larger number of projects than in 2008. The increasing interest in this program shows that Telefilm and the APTN are meeting a real need within Aboriginal communities.”

”The scope and diversity of projects that will receive support this year from the Featuring Aboriginal Stories Program highlight the inherent ability of Aboriginal producers to tell stories. We celebrate that success and are pleased to be a part of this unique opportunity,” said Peter Strutt, APTN Director of Programming.


English-language projects

A Better Place

Writer: Shane Belcourt, Duane Murray
Region: Ontario


Writer: Ian Barr
Production company: Devonshire Productions
Producer: Paula Devonshire
Region: Ontario

Killing the Shaman

Writer: Jeremy Torrie
Production company: High Definition Pictures Inc.
Producers: Jeremy Torrie, Jim Compton
Region: West

Monkey Beach

Writers : Andrew Duncan, Johnny Darrell
Production company : Mama-OO Pictures
Producers: Loretta Todd, Rajvinder Uppal
Region : West

Red River Max

Writer: Joe Thornton
Production company: EagleCreek Entertainment
Producer: Joe Thornton
Region: West


Writer: Abraham Côté
Region: Quebec

Running Home

Writer: Zoe Leigh Hopkins
Producer: Laura Milliken
Region: West


Writers: Evan Adams, Michelle St. John
Production company: Frog Girl Films Inc.
Producer: Marie Clements
Region: West

The Point

Writer: Mark Ennis
Production company: Bear Paw Productions Inc.
Producers: Brian Francis, Timothy M. Hogan, Rick Leguerrier
Region: Atlantic

Untitled (Tracey’s Film)

Writer: Tracey Deer
Production company: Rezolution Pictures International
Producers: Ernest Webb, Catherine Bainbridge
Region : Quebec

White Mask

Writer: Matt Alden Dykes
Production company: Mosaic Entertainment Inc.
Producers: Camille Beaudoin, Eric Rebalkin
Region: West

French-language projects

Enfant du temps

Writer: Evelyne Papatie
Region: Quebec

Martine ma muse

Writer: Micheline Marchand
Region: Ontario

Nibi et Kigôs – Deux frères

Writer: Kevin Papatie
Region: Quebec

Saisons Atikamekw

Writer: Line Rainville
Region: Quebec


Launched in 2008, the Featuring Aboriginal Stories Program aims to encourage and support Aboriginal filmmakers to develop original script material that will be attractive to producers, financiers and other film industry decision-makers. The program provides solid support to Aboriginal writers and producers, at all stages of a film’s development. Again this year, Telefilm has mandated the National Screen Institute in Winnipeg with the delivery of the training component of this program.

This initiative solidly backs up Telefilm’s commitment to allocate a total of $1.2 million over three years to set up a professional development program for Aboriginal filmmakers. The APTN is contributing $750,000 to the initiative over three years.  

Developing and promoting the Canadian audiovisual industryTelefilm Canada is a federal cultural agency dedicated to developing and promoting the Canadian audiovisual industry. Telefilm provides financial support to the private sector to create distinctively Canadian productions that appeal to domestic and international audiences. The Corporation also administers the funding programs of the Canada Feature Film Fund, the Canadian Television Fund and the Canada New Media Fund. Visit

 About APTN
September 1, 2009 marked the 10-year anniversary of the launch of the first national Aboriginal television network in the world with programming by, for and about Aboriginal Peoples to share with all Canadians and viewers around the world. APTN is available in approximately 10 million Canadian households and commercial establishments with cable, direct-to-home satellite (DTH), telco-delivered and fixed wireless television service providers. APTN does not receive government funding for operations but generates revenue through subscriber fees, advertising sales and strategic partnerships. APTN broadcasts programming with 56% offered in English, 16% in French and 28% in Aboriginal languages. For program schedule or for more information, please contact APTN at (204) 947-9331 Ext. 358 or toll free at 1-888-330-APTN (2786), or visit


Media inquiries:

Eva Hartling
Communication Specialist
Telefilm Canada
514-283-0838 or 1-800-567-08920, ext. 2090

Sylvia Kolopenuk
Manager of Communications
Aboriginal Peoples Television Network
204-947-9331, ext. 339