Wapikoni Mobile unveiled the shorts from its 2015 crop before a packed house last night. Each year, as part of the Festival du nouveau cinéma, the launch marks the end of the season of audiovisual training and creation workshops in First Nations communities.
In 2015, Wapikoni was present in 15 communities in Quebec, 70 shorts were made, 15 of which were screened yesterday in the presence of a dozen filmmakers there to meet their Montreal public. Most of them from distant communities, they offered strong films, putting into pictures their perspectives on issues which touch them directly: the environment, missing and disappeared aboriginal women, prejudices, etc., and also on lighter subjects, treated with humour and inventiveness.
Three awards to First Nations filmmakers
After the screening, one of the evening’s highlights was the awards ceremony.
Sylvie de Bellefeuille, from Canal D, presented two Canal D audience awards. The first was awarded to Eden Awashish from Opticiwan for her film Nothing on mocassins. Natasha Kanapé-Fontaine, an innu poet and a filmmaker living in Montreal, received the second audience award for her film We will rise. These films were recognized for the originality of their cinematic approach and the strength of their content.
The engagement award was presented by Cynthia Racine of Télé-Québec-La Fabrique culturelle to Jackie Basile of the Wemotaci community. Jackie stood out throughout the workshop in her community for her leadership and positive influence on other participants. She is also the director of the film Athletikamekwok, which you can watch on La Fabrique culturelle or Wapikoni's Internet sites.