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Sundance Institute’s Native Program Shines at the Olympics

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Just as I was ready to put away my puffy jacket from January’s Festival, the Native Program was invited by the Host Four Nations to present a film program at the Aboriginal Pavilion at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics. It was such an amazing honor that we eagerly re-packed our winter gear and began making preparations for February in Vancouver.

The Aboriginal Pavilion’s space was designed to present music, song, dance, and other art forms for those attending the Olympics as a way to celebrate Canada’s Aboriginal heritage. The venue was the perfect welcome point for the international Olympic crowd located next to the Queen Elizabeth Theater in downtown Vancouver.

We chose to present a program of short films which is a compilation of “best of” Native films that have screened at the Sundance Film Festival over the past several years. The program included: Sterlin Harjo’s Goodnight Irene (2004), Kevin Lee Burton’s Nikamowin (2008), Cedar Sherbert’s Gesture Down (I Don’t Sing) (2006), Blackhorse Lowe’s Shimásání (2010), Taika Waititi’s Two Cars, One Night (2004), and Andrew MacLean’s Sikumi (2008).

The films were screened in triplicate inside the domed Pavilion and also projected externally so people could watch outside too. Here you can see Blackhorse Lowe’s Shimásání and Andrew MacLean’s Sikumi being projected across the dome.

The audiences responded so wonderfully to the films—both the people inside and the crowds who gathered on their way to other Olympic festivities.

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Who Was… Mark Silverman?

Mark Silverman allied himself with the Coen brothers early in his and their careers. Here, he works as co-producer on the set of “Raising Arizona.”

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