Celebrate ‘Native American Heritage Month’ with Three Films Making Their Digital Premieres Today through Sundance Institute Artist Services Program

Barking Water │ Coming to Light: Edward S. Curtis and the North American Indians │ Miss Navajo

Posted Nov 20, 2012

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Los Angeles, CA — With November as ‘Native American Heritage Month,’ three films about Native American culture make their digital premieres today through the Sundance Institute Artist Services access to distribution program, which provides Institute artists with exclusive opportunities for creative self-distribution, marketing and financing solutions for their work.

Look for the films on iTunes, Amazon Instant Video, Microsoft Xbox Video, Sony Entertainment Network, SundanceNOW, VUDU and YouTube. Films will be available on Hulu, Netflix and SnagFilms in the coming weeks. Special bonus video content from the Institute’s archives is available for select titles. For details visit sundance.org/nowplaying.

Keri Putnam, Executive Director of Sundance Institute, said, “Since it was founded, Sundance Institute has made support of Native American artists a priority, following the original vision of our President and Founder, Robert Redford. The films premiering today offer a sampling of work supported by our Native American and Indigenous Program and the Sundance Film Festival, and reflect the diversity of Native stories told through the medium of film.”

Barking Water (Director and screenwriter: Sterlin Harjo) — Irene and Frankie have had a tumultuous relationship for 40 years. As Frankie lies on his deathbed, Irene comes back to him one last time to break him from the hospital and take him home. Cast: Richard Ray Whitman, Casey Camp-Horenik. iTunes, Amazon Instant Video, Microsoft Xbox Video, Playstation, SundanceNOW, VUDU and YouTube. (2009 Sundance Film Festival, 2009 Annenberg Film Fellowship Grant)

Coming to Light: Edward S. Curtis and the North American Indians (Director and screenwriter: Anne Makepeace) — Coming to Light tells the dramatic story of Edward S. Curtis and the making of his monumental portfolio of Native American images. People from many tribes across the American west reveal the meaning of Curtis’s photographs to Indian people today. iTunes, Amazon Instant Video, Microsoft Xbox Video, Playstation, SundanceNOW, VUDU and YouTube. (2000 Sundance Film Festival)

Miss Navajo (Director: Billy Luther) — A documentary that explores the role of women and tradition in Navajo culture by following one young woman as she prepares for and competes in the Miss Navajo Nation Pageant. iTunes, Amazon Instant Video, Microsoft Xbox, Playstation, SundanceNOW, VUDU and YouTube. (2007 Sundance Film Festival, 2007 Documentary Film Series)

The exclusive aggregation partner for distribution across all portals participating in the Artist Services program is Cinedigm Entertainment Group. The Artist Services initiative is made possible by The Bertha Foundation. These deals were brokered via pro bono legal services generously provided by law firm O’Melveny & Myers LLP, which has built the legal framework for the Artist Services program and participating filmmakers since its inception.

Sundance Institute
Founded by Robert Redford in 1981, Sundance Institute is a global, nonprofit cultural organization dedicated to nurturing artistic expression in film and theatre, and to supporting intercultural dialogue between artists and audiences. The Institute promotes independent storytelling to unite, inform, and inspire, regardless of geopolitical, social, religious, or cultural differences. Internationally recognized for its annual Sundance Film Festival and its artistic development programs for directors, screenwriters, producers, film composers, playwrights, and theatre artists, Sundance Institute has nurtured such projects as Born Into Brothels, Trouble the Water, Beasts of the Southern Wild, Amreeka, An Inconvenient Truth, Spring Awakening, Light in the Piazza, and Angels in America. Join Sundance Institute on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

Sundance Institute Native American and Indigenous Program
Rooted in the recognition of a rich tradition of storytelling and artistic expression by Native American and Indigenous peoples, the Sundance Institute Native American and Indigenous Program operates the NativeLab Film Fellowship established for emerging Native American/Alaska Native/Native Hawaiian filmmakers. The program has also established filmmaker labs in New Zealand and Australia which have spawned such projects as The Strength of Water (New Zealand), Samson and Delilah (Australia), Bran Nue Dae (Australia), and Here I Am (Australia). The program also collaborates with the other artist programs of the Institute and scouts worldwide and across the United States for Indigenous artists with projects that can be supported through the Institute’s Feature Film Program, Creative Producers Summit/Creative Producing Fellowship, and Sundance Film Festival. Filmmakers and projects identified for support include Sterlin Harjo’s Spirit Award–nominated Four Sheets to the Wind and his follow-up feature Barking Water; Academy Award nominee Taika Waititi’s feature debut Eagle vs Shark and his follow-up feature Boy; Billy Luther’s award-winning Miss Navajo and his second feature documentary Grab; and Andrew Okpeaha MacLean’s Sundance Film Festival Jury Prize–winning Sikumi and his feature debut On the Ice, which was awarded the Crystal Bear Award and the Best First Feature Prize at the 61st Berlinale; and Aurora Guerrero’s Mosquita y Mari, which premiered at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival. Forthcoming projects include Sydney Freeland’s Drunktown’s Finest and Yolanda Cruz’s La Raya. www.sundance.org/native

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