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National Film Board

The People of the Kattawapiskak River

Alanis Obomsawin / Canada / 2012 / 78 ' / English


Alison Burns
Alanis Obomsawin
René Sioui Labelle, Martin Duckworth, Philippe Amiguet, Alan Poon & Adam George Makarenko
Don Ayer
Normand Guilbeault
Ravida Din, Alanis Obomsawin, Serena Koostachin, Kenny Wheesk & Chris Niesing
National Film Board of Canada
Research: Alanis Obomsawin
Research: Katherine Kasirer

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Awards & Festivals

Official Selection, ImagineNATIVE Film Festival, Montreal, 2012
Official Selection, Vancouver Indigenous Media Arts Festival, 2013
Official Selection, Human Rights Watch Film Festival, 2013
Official Selection, American Indian Film Festival, 2013
Official Selection, Available Light Film Festival, Whitehorse, Yukon, 2013

Upcoming Screenings

Stay tuned for upcoming screenings!

In Production

The disturbing and moving account of the aboriginal community in Canada whose members sparked the Idle No More movement.


On October 28,2011, Theresa Spence, chief of the Attawapiskat First Nation, declared a state of emergency in her community in northern Ontario.

The housing conditions on the reserve made international headlines and revealed the often hidden realities of extreme poverty in one of the world`s wealthiest countries. A media storm erupted in Canada as the plight of the isolated First Nation captivated the country. However, what was largely absent from the genuine concern and political finger-pointing portrayed in the press were the voices of the people of Attawapiskat themselves. Alanis Obomsawin journeys to Attawapiskat on the shores of the Kattawapiskak River and introduces us to the residents of the beleaguered community.

Through the filmmaker`s gentle, yet unflinchingly honest lens, we are taken inside the overcrowded homes and make-shift shacks as the residents speak of their hardships while revealing inspiring hope for the future.


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