New Partnership Between International Sámi Film Institute & Sundance Institute’s Indigenous Program will Strengthen Arctic Indigenous Film

Nations Without Borders

Published February 11, 2019

BERLIN  — International Sámi Film Institute (ISFI) is pleased to announce a new partnership between Sundance Institute’s Indigenous Program around the establishment of the Arctic Indigenous Film Fund. This new partnership has the ability to strengthen Arctic Indigenous film as Sundance Institute provides and preserves the space for artists in film, theatre, film composing and digital media to create and thrive.

The new partnership was announced by ISFI Managing Director Anne Lajla Utsi and Sundance Institute Indigenous Program Director N. Bird Runningwater during the Sámi reception hosted by ISFI and Norwegian Film Institute at the 69th annual Berlinale Film Festival’s European Film Market in Germany.

Arctic Indigenous Film Fund (AIFF) is an international collaboration with partners in the Circumpolar Arctic—Canada, Sápmi, Greenland, Russia and United States. The aim of the fund is to promote high quality Arctic Indigenous peoples’ film projects and co-productions that enhance Indigenous cultures, languages and communities.

Following President and Founder Robert Redford’s original vision, Sundance Institute has remained committed to supporting the voices of Indigenous artists. Sundance Institute is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the discovery and development of independent artists and audiences. Through its programs, the Institute seeks to discover, support and inspire independent film, media and theatre artists from the United States and around the world, and to introduce audiences to their new work.

“We welcome this partnership with Sundance Institute wholeheartedly and this represents a watershed for Arctic Indigenous Filmmakers. Sundance Institute is one of the most acclaimed film institutions in the world and from the very beginning they have acknowledged Indigenous filmmakers and embraced their talent,” said Anne Lajla Utsi, managing director of International Sámi Film Institute. “We are very enthusiastic about this collaboration and with this international partnership around the AIFF, Arctic indigenous film will rise on the global film scene in the future.”

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