The Motion Picture Industry

Unity Ride shoot at the Crow Reservation
Sound man: Rick Sagayadan
Producer: Dorothy Christian
Photograph by August Armstrong, June 1996

In the early twentieth century, many Native performers found employment in the motion picture industry. Today, they work in the industry as wranglers, actors and stuntmen. Some are behind the camera as directors, writers and producers. They often choose ranching and rodeo life, or horses, cattle and buffalo, as subjects for their work. Over the past few years, a few Native film producers have dedicated their time to creating documentary films on the lives of Native cowboys, ranchers and rodeo participants.

Unity Ride shoot at the Crow Reservation
Cameraman: August Armstrong;
Producer: Dorothy Christian
Photogaph by Rick Sagayadan, June 1996

Dorothy Christian

Dorothy Christian, a member of the Spallumcheen Indian Band from the interior of British Columbia, is of Okanagan/Secwepemc ancestry. While living in central Canada, she majored in Political Science and Religious Studies at the University of Toronto. Ms. Christian was a member of the Ontario Film Review Board for five years, and for two of those years she served as chair of the Board. She has been associated with Vision TV since 1990 and currently produces "Skylight", the network's flagship program. Ms. Christian has published articles in Gatherings, News in Indian Country, Akwesasne Notes and Raven's Eye. Her recent film productions have documented the Unity Ride, and the Snow Mountain Memorial Rodeo, which presented the importance of Native rodeo in the community. Her films are included in this exhibit.

On location, Snow Mountain Memorial Rodeo Shoot:
At Pierre family Shingle Creek Ranch.
Photograph by Janelle Dwyer, May 1996

page 1 | page 2

Introduction | Indian Days and Parades | Wild West Shows | Indian Villages and Pow-wows | Mounted Police | Entertainers | Motion Picture Industry