Recap of the 23rd RNCI Red Nation International Film Festival

A Martinez and Dolores HuertaPhoto courtesy: Headshots by Peggy

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Red Nation International Film Festival & Awards celebrated the top Native films of 2018

News Release

Red Nation Media Group

The 23rd RNCI Red Nation International Film Festival & Awards, presented by Film LA and Honest Engine Films, ran Nov. 5th through 16th and for the first time broadcast its RNCI Red Nation Award *Nominees* Live. Hosted by Ed Begley Jr., A Martinez and Joanelle Romero. RNCI Red Nation Awards Gala took place Nov. 16 at the Laemmle Fine Arts in Beverly Hills.

“We’re so proud to be a supporter of the Festival and all its activities that happen with it and our board has committed its resources to support emerging and underrepresented filmmakers and communities which is a particularly special group for us with the original peoples,” Board member of Red Nation Celebration Institute and President of Film LA the regional film office of L.A. County Paul Audley said in a statement. “This is an opportunity to tell the world about the history and contemporary life of Indigenous people and to tell stories that cross cultural boundaries helping to open doors to the creation of personal communications and a broader understanding of the world we live.”

“This years Festival theme is The Power of Inclusion, you might wonder why someone from a policy school is interested in supporting a film festival, the real power of democracy is in the people. Its works better when we know all the views, it works better when those views are discussed openly and transparently and that those elected officials are held accountable,” stated Aubrey Hicks USC School of Public Policy. “So the American dream is simple but our history has shown that we have not always lived up to our ideals. The bright side is that we can clearly do better, we can learn about our history, learn about all the different peoples that make up this country though film.”

Joe Tohonnie Jr. Apache Crown Dancers. Photo courtesy: Headshots by Peggy

“RNIFF is rooted in Indian Country and is the leading force of American Indian & Indigenous cinema in the entertainment industry since 1995. In support of our theme Power of Inclusion in Diversity in front of and behind the camera, storytelling is key when it comes from the original peoples of this land,” quotes Joanelle Romero CEO, founder, President of RNIFF and member of AMPAS. “Being the first Native Film Festival in Hollywood and having the first Native Film Festival screening at The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences (Linwood Dunn Theater), we were fortunate to secure and screen the top independent American Indian & Indigenous films this year and honor them at RNCI Red Nation Awards Ceremony. In addition highlighting Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women with RNCI’s #WhyWeWearRED Call to Action with support from Taylor Sheridan (Sicario: Day of the Soldado, Wind River, Hell or High Water).”

2018 RNCI Red Nation Awards Winners

Best Director Susanna White – Woman Walks Ahead

Best Picture Woman Walks Ahead
Edward Zwick, Marshall Herskovitz, Andrea Calderwood, Erika Olde, Richard Solomon – Producers

Outstanding Actress in the Leading Role Rulan Tangen – Woman Walks Ahead

Outstanding Actor in the Leading Role Ajuawak Kapashesit – Indian Horse

Outstanding Actress in a Supporting Role Eva Greyeyes – Indian Horse

Outstanding Actor in Supporting Role Wayne Gausedis Baker – Indian Horse

Best Documentary Film Umo Nholve: The Omaha Speaking

Best Indigenous Documentary or Feature In Times of Rain

Best Sports Feature Dirt McComber: Last of the Mohicans

Best Short Ohero:Kon – Under the Husk

Best Animated Film Raven and the Dogfish Woman

Best Live Action Running Shadow

Best Two-Spirit (LGBTQ) story Mino Bimaadiziwin

Best Student Film Silent No More

Best Television Series Westworld – HBO

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a TV Movie, Miniseries, Special, Comedy, or Series Elizabeth Frances

Outstanding Supporting Actor in TV Movie, Miniseries, Special, Comedy, or Series Zahn McClarnon – Westworld

Full list of Nominees and Winners:

RNCI Tribute Awards

Edward R Roybal Award Dolores Huerta

The Brando Award Taylor Sherdian

Edward Albert Jr Award Ed Begley Jr

American Indian Heritage Award Congresswoman Debra Haaland

About RNCI Tribute Awards:

Wayne Baker/ Indian Horse, Glenna Slater/ UmoNhoN Iye THE OMAHA SPEAKING. Ajuawak Kapashesit/Indian Horse, Brigitte Timmerman/ UmoNhoN Iye THE OMAHA SPEAKING. Photo courtesy: Headshots by Peggy

RNCI Red Nation Awards Show will broadcast on Red Nation Television Network and cable outlets in December 2018, reaching 10 million viewers in 37 countries.


The RNCI Red Nation International Film Festival has enjoyed support from major studios, networks and unions during its 23 year legacy, including The Walt Disney Company, Comcast NBC/Universal, CBS Corporate, Disney ABC Television Group, Fox Entertainment Group, HBO, Turner Foundation, Turner Broadcast, Paramount Pictures, TNT Network, Screen Actors Guild, Writers Guild of America, ABC Channel 7, CBS KCAL 9, NBC Channel 4.

The Red Nation Celebration Institute recognizes and thanks the critical support and funding from The City of Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, City and County of Los Angeles: District 10: Herb Wesson (President), District Two: Mark Ridley-Thomas, District 3: Bob Blumenfield, District 5: Paul Koretz, West Hollywood Chamber of Commerce and The City of Santa Fe Mayor Allan Webber.

RNCI Industry Alliance Partners include Outfest, Los Angeles Film Festival, National Indigenous Womens Resource Center, Sony Pictures Classics, Tewa Women United, Rematriation Magazine, Indigenous Concepts Counseling, Joanne Shenandoah.

The support of these organizations helps offset the Festival’s costs and sustain the Institute’s year-round programs for American Indian & Indigenous independent artists.

2018 Sponsors:

Daniel French/Ohero:Kon -Under the Husk,Steven Paul Judd/artist. Photo courtesy: Headshots by Peggy

The Festival screened for 12 days thoughout Los Angeles and Beverly Hills. Over 200+ films were submitted. Some having had their first world premieres and others California premieres, Los Angeles premieres and Festival premieres.

The 12 day Festival programs highlighted female filmmakers, LGBTQ, live performances, podcasts, stage readings, masterclasses, conversation series, veterans, youth, language series supporting Native elders.

The full schedule Los Angeles RNCI 23rd Red Nation International Film Festival & Awards is available at the Festival’s website. Visit:

RNCI Red Nation Award Nominees Announced Live @ LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes October 8, 2018: WATCH:


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