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First Stories - Volume III

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First Stories is a highly successful Aboriginal filmmakers' program presented by the NFB, CBC, and Telefilm Canada. The program invites Aboriginal filmmakers to tell the stories that are important to them and their communities. In March 2005, First Stories: Volume I was launched in Manitoba, followed by Volume II from Saskatchewan in 2006 and Volume III from Alberta in 2007. The program provides 15 emerging Aboriginal filmmakers from across their respective provinces the opportunity to take hands-on documentary workshops with experienced professionals. Upon submitting successful project proposals, the four selected participants go on to realize short documentaries under the guidance of NFB producers. For more information on First Stories, please go to www.nfb.ca/firststories.

Walking Alone by Gerald Auger

When Shawn Bernard started a rap group, he never dreamed that it would turn into a gang. But before long, the rap group was overshadowed by the increasingly notorious Aboriginal gang. Shawn became a renowned drug dealer, living a high-risk lifestyle that would ultimately lead to tragedy. In Walking Alone, Shawn raps about the various struggles of his life, the choices he’s made and their consequences, while poignantly recounting the loss of his sister. Filmmaker Gerald Auger has made an impressive debut—one wrought with emotion and hope.

Two Spirited by Sharon A. Desjarlais

Two Spirited is the empowering story of Rodney “Geeyo” Poucette’s shattering encounter with prejudice and his journey to overcome it. Geeyo has competed as a Jingle Dress dancer—a category normally reserved for women. During a powwow, an elder discovered that Geeyo was, in fact, a man and took away his championship. Deeply humiliated, he stopped dancing. Six years later, he makes a triumphant return to the powwow arena, realizing that the only way to change people’s minds is to walk proudly, while being true to one’s spirit.

His Guidance (Okiskinotahewewin) by Duane Linklater

This stirring short film examines a drummer’s very personal relationship to the drum, from his first encounter with a powwow drum and how that experience ultimately changed his life, to its role as a spiritual mentor and guide. For this proud drumkeeper, the drum is a way of life. His Guidance is a powerful reminder of the need to maintain a strong connection to one’s roots.

Hooked Up: NDNs Online by Jennifer Dysart

Hooked Up: NDNs Online finds single mother Michelle plunging into the world of online dating. As a newcomer relating her experiences through a video diary, she navigates the often humorous ins and outs of building an alluring profile to deciphering internet chat slang to getting her webcam to work. Along the way, Michelle learns that Indians or (NDNs) are, indeed, hooking up and reaching out—and that, sometimes, friends are found in the least likely of places!

Extra interviews with Gerald, Duane, Sharon and Jennifer.

2007, 40 min 13 s

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