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Local filmmaker enters work to festival

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Gimli Film Festival (GFF) has announced their 2021 film festival and events lineup, featuring a drive-in movie theatre, movies on demand and virtual workshops. The festival is hosting socially-distanced events like the RBC Sunset Drive-In Theatre running from July 21 to 25. They’ve also introduced GFF On Demand which allows this year’s films to be streamed online at any time during the festival. The festival runs from July 12 to 25. The festival will wrap up with an awards ceremony on July 24.
In the Manitoba Shorts Competition, local filmmaker Steven Bignell hopes to see success with his latest work, “My Son…My Father”. The story is set during WW2, and is about an Indigenous soldier who writes to his son back home, not knowing the horrors he is going through. You can watch it online right now on YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uu-kGxnZ634
Steven Bignell was born and raised in Opaskwayak Cree Nation in The Pas, Manitoba. He is a local Indigenous artist who has been painting for the past 35 years and sold hundreds of original pieces. He has also been involved in cosplay costume making for the past 25 years. Steven has a keen interest in film and has even had a few roles in productions such as “Moccasin Flats”, “Beyond” and extra work in “Just Friends” and “Tideland”.
Bignell and the crew spent a lot of time creating props and did a lot of the filming this past winter. Bignell hopes to enter into more film festivals. In 2019, with a small crew and local talent, Steven worked on the short horror film “Black Ice” which premiered at Storytellers’ Film Festival in The Pas and received great reviews.
Bignell has also submitted his work to the 4th annual Lumbee Film Festival which takes place July 8-11, 2021 in Pembroke, NC. The festival showcases bold, original new films made by American Indians, with special interest in those from Southeastern American Indian communities and especially members of the Lumbee Tribe of NC.
The festival features a panel discussion with community organizers, filmmakers and tribe members discussing cultural extraction, cultural appropriation, and other issues faced by indigenous communities and their work within the cultural sector.