Aug. 15, 2003
FREDERICTON (CNB) -- A New Brunswick produced film series, featuring stories about the Mi'kmaq people of Atlantic Canada, will premiere at the Native American Film and Video Festival in New York City from Dec. 3-7.
"I am pleased to see the rich culture and heritage of the aboriginal people of our region presented in such a dynamic fashion on the international stage," Business New Brunswick Minister Peter Mesheau said. "The aboriginal experience, the history and way of life of the Mi'kmaq and Maliseet people, are such an important part of our past and our future in New Brunswick. Our aboriginal communities deserve this special recognition."
The film series Eastern Tide is produced by Brian J. Francis of Bear Paw Productions in Big Cove and Sam Grana of Les Productions Grana Productions, Inc. of Moncton. Eastern Tide is a documentary film series which looks at the history and way of life of Canada's aboriginal people with emphasis on the Mi'kmaq communities of the four Atlantic provinces.
Two segments from the Eastern Tide series entitled, Mi'kmaq Baskets: A Tradition, Season II, and Burnt Church: A Cry for Freedom, Season I, have been selected to premiere at the international native festival, hosted by the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian. The festival takes place every two years at the George Gustav Heye Centre in New York. It will include screenings of more than 60 film and video productions from North, Central and South America.
"Eastern Tide is really a unique and much needed vehicle for the elders and the grassroots Mi'kmaq people to express their views on their life experiences," Francis said. "I am very happy with this recognition. It validates what Eastern Tide set out to do, that is, to promote awareness of the Mi'kmaq people to a broader and more diverse audience. The honest contribution of our people and their convictions makes Eastern Tide what it is today."
The Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian features free art, music and cultural events year round. As part of the museum, the George Gustav Heye Centre is dedicated to the collection and exhibition of native arts and crafts as well as to public programs and information services concerning films, video, radio and electronic media by and about indigenous peoples of North, Central, South America and Hawaii.
The George Gustave Heye Centre provides a wide range of media exhibitions and information services to independent and Native American media makers, programmers, researchers and the general public. Since 1979, the centre has presented 10 Native American Film and Video festivals in New York, featuring outstanding new works from throughout the Americas.
MEDIA CONTACTS: Judy Cole, communications officer, Business New Brunswick, 506-444-4983; Ray Wilson, executive director, New Brunswick Film, 506-869-6868; Brian J. Francis, Bear Paw Productions, 506-523-4116.