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Telefilm Canada supports eight Indigenous feature films

27 June 2019

Toronto/ Montréal, June 27, 2019 – Telefilm Canada is investing more than $4 million in feature films by writers, directors and producers from Indigenous communities. Highly diverse in terms of genre, this lineup is also notable for near gender parity, with three projects helmed by women. Also of note, one of the films will be shot in French (a first for the Indigenous production stream), and two of the projects feature a mix of Indigenous languages, as well as English. Three of the films were recently announced under the Talent to Watch Program.

As part of its 2020 objective, Telefilm Canada earmarks $4 million a year, across all its programs, to fund projects by Canadian filmmakers from Indigenous communities nationwide. The projects are assessed by an external all-Indigenous jury.

“Supporting the incredible talent of Canada’s Indigenous communities continues to be an important priority for Telefilm. In this International Year of Indigenous Languages, we are proud to support works in Mi’kmaq and Inuktitut. The selected projects will bring to light new voices and perspectives key to building our cinema of tomorrow,” said Christa Dickenson, Executive Director, Telefilm Canada.

“The jury was blown away by the strength and diversity of applications to the Indigenous stream,” stated the group of Indigenous peer assessors tasked with reviewing the applications. “From documentary webseries to irreverent comedy, horror, and social drama, the next wave of Indigenous cinema is exploding beyond the boundaries of genre. And with production taking place from Nunavut to BC, Manitoba, Quebec and Nova Scotia, in languages as diverse as Inuktitut, Mi’kmaq, English and French, it’s clear that Indigenous cinema is giving life to our stories all across the country.”

Selected projects

Director, writer and producer: Jason Brennan (Anishinaabe)
Language: French
Province: Quebec

Director and writer: Bretten Hannam (Mi’kmaq)
Producer: Gharrett Paon (Mi’kmaq)
Language: English / Mi’kmaq
Province: Nova Scotia

Director, writer and producer: Nyla Innuksuk (Inuit)
Language: English / Inuktitut
Province: Ontario/Nunavut

Portraits from a Fire
Director: Trevor Mack (Tl’etinqox)
Writer: Derek Vermillion (Cree)
Producer: Rylan Friday (Cote First Nation), Kate Kroll
Language: English
Province: British Columbia

Tipping Andy Warhol
Director: Dana Claxton (Lakota Sioux)
Writers: Courtenay Crane (The Key First Nations) Dana Claxton, Courtenay Crane (The Key First Nations), Sam Bob
Producer: David Paperny
Language: English
Province: British Columbia

Director and writer: Adeline Bird (Anishinaabe)
Producer: Ryan Cooper (Peguis First Nation)
Under the Talent to Watch Program – Partner: On Screen Manitoba
Language: English
Province: Manitoba

Coffee Express
Director and writer: Roger Boyer
Producer: Eva Thomas (Tohono O’odham/Ojibway/Cherokee)
Under the Talent to Watch Program – Partner: Adam Beach Film Inst.
Language: English
Province: Manitoba

The Certainty of Symmetry
Director and writer: Jaren Brandt Bartlett  (Cree-Ojibway/Métis)
Producer: Kelton Stepanowich (Cree/Métis)
Under the Talent to Watch Program – Partner: Adam Beach Film Inst.
Language: English
Province: British Columbia


About Telefilm Canada

Telefilm is dedicated to the cultural, commercial and industrial success of Canada’s audiovisual industry. Through funding and promotion programs, Telefilm supports dynamic companies and creative talent at home and around the world. Telefilm also makes recommendations regarding the certification of audiovisual coproduction treaties to the Minister of Canadian Heritage, and administers the programs of the Canada Media Fund. Launched in 2012, the Talent Fund accepts private donations which principally support emerging talent. Visit and follow us on Twitter at and on Facebook at

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Media enquiries:

Brian Mullen
Advisor, Public Relations – English Market
Telefilm Canada

Loreto Garrido
Advisor, Public Relations – French Market
Telefilm Canada