25th First Peoples Festival – Awards

Prix du festival

The 25th First Peoples Festival announced their winners during a ceremony that took place at the Jean-Claude Lauzon Theatre (UQAM).

 Creation :

Teueikan  1st Prize : Café Hatuey Viveros Lavielle - Mexico - 80 min

A view of time immemorial in a civilization whose roots extend to the depths of human settlement of the Americas is the backdrop of this film. This weight of history provides the film a strong incantatory power. In the village of San Miguel Tzinacapan, each gesture, each tone of voice, each glance is a part of a continuum in which the smallest aspects of everyday life take on a ceremonial value.

For its espousal of the silent rhythms of labours and days and making visible the age-old ties uniting dead and living in a Nahua family’s intimate life, in an Indigenous Mexican community.

The jury of First Peoples Festival 2015 award the Teueikan Grand Prize to Café, a documentary by Hatuey Viveros Lavielle.


Teueikan 2nd Prize : Yvy Maraey Juan Carlos Valdivia - Bolivia – 105 min

For its defence and illustration of the Gay non-Science coming out of the encounter with the Other, for the skilful construction of a story line as lush and dense as the natural settings it plays out in and as disturbing as the issues it raises, for this unclassifiable work of art, both intimate and epic,

The First Peoples Festival 2015 awards the Teueikan second prize to Yvy Maraey by Juan Carlos Valdivia.


Nominee : Sume - Mumisitsinerup Nipaa Inuk Silis Høegh - Greenland - 73 min


Community :

Rigoberta Menchu 1st Prize : Le rêve d'OkpikLaura Rietveld - Canada - 73 min
As we know all too well, the development of Indigenous nations is impeded by low educational levels, the enduring damage of cultural genocide policies, language barriers and geographic isolation.

A man with a physical disability has succeeded in becoming a champion in dogsled team races and a breeder playing a part in the re-introduction of sled dogs among the Inuit; this is an exploit that becomes an allegory in a film that extols the ancestral virtues of endurance and bravery that enabled humans to survive in the starkest of landscapes and develop unique cultures there.

 Thus, the First Peoples Festival 2015 jury awards the Rigoberta Menchu grand prize to a work harnessed to hope. In its generous movements, it takes our gaze to broad horizons of renewal; Le rêve d’Okpik by Laura Rietveld.


Rigoberta Menchu 2nd Prize : Comer del monteAndrea Ruffini - Paraguay - 30 min
In the Paraguayan Chaco region, faced with massive deforestation, the Indigenous communities see the source of their foodstuffs, their pharmacopoeia and their mythological tales disappear before their eyes.

For a documentary unflinchingly exposing the effects of uncontrolled settlement on one of the last virgin territories of the planet, for its attention towards the dietary knowledge and ecological wisdom of Indigenous practices, the jury of First Peoples Festival 2015 grants the Rigoberta Menchu second prize to Comer del monte by Andrea Ruffini.


Nominee : Circus Without Borders Susan Gray, Linda Matchan - USA - 69 min


Best short film - ex aequo :

Alma y Esperanza Itandehui Jansen - Mexico - 17 min
For a film that moves us by recounting the story of a meeting between an elderly woman and her granddaughter who had been separated by great distances, in a refined cinematographic language. In the sobriety of its form and the complexity of the story it tells, it bears the mark of a true filmmaking talent.

The First Peoples Festival 2015 jury awards the prize for Best Short Subject to Alma y Esperanza by Itandehui Jansen.


Los Hilos de la vida de las mujeres jaguarMujeres Mayas KAQLA - Mexico - 21 min
Beyond the depressing observations about harsh situations experienced by too many Amerindian women, the film is a call to look beyond today’s problems and invite women to draw upon traditional wisdom and spirituality to find the courage to change matters collectively.

Los hilos de la vida de las mujeres jaguar, a collective creation by Mujeres Mayas de Kaqla, has earned the Best Short Subject prize ex-aequo awarded by the jury of First Peoples Festival 2015.


Mention : Le Chemin rouge Thérèse Ottawa - Canada - 15 min

Nominee : Pumanawa: The Gift Poata Eruera – New Zealand - 14 min

Nominee : Mr Sanderson Ray Sanderson, Terrie McIntosh - Canada - 9 min


Best cinematographygraphy:

Winner : Yvy Maraey Juan Carlos Valdivia - Bolivia – 105 min

Special mention : Camino del agua Carlos Montoya - Colombia - 8 min

Nominee : Café Hatuey Viveros Lavielle - Mexico - 80 min

Nominee : Mr. Sanderson Ray Sanderson, Terrie McIntosh - Canada - 9 min


Jury Favorite, short film and cinematography :

Mr. SandersonRay Sanderson, Terrie McIntosh - Canada - 9 min

To a luminous film that wins us over, eye and heart, via its great visual beauty and the humanity that emanates from it.

The First Peoples Festival jury has decided to grant a special award, Coup de cœur du jury, to Mr Sanderson, a short by Ray Sanderson and Terrie McIntosh.


Best Sequences documentary Prize : Café Hatuey Viveros Lavielle - Mexico - 80 min
This astonishingly faithful depiction of a decisive moment in the life of a family after the father’s death, goes beyond an intimate chronicle, proving to be a luminous window towards a millenary culture, very much alive in the avatars of the present, and whose cosmic vision has suddenly become very close thanks to exemplary cinematographic work: these are the main qualities of Café that earn it the Best Documentary prize at First Peoples Festival 2015, awarded by the Séquences journal jury.

Special mention : Sume - Mumisitsinerup Nipaa Inuk Silis Høegh - Greenland - 73 min

Nominee : El Tigre y El Venado El Salvador - Sergio Sibrián - 46 min


Télé-Québec best choice Award : 
De face ou de profilSharon Fontaine - Canada - 5 min
Taking a heads-on view of the unpredictable facets of identities in social media, the film De face ou de profil by Sharon Fontaine has earned the Coup de cœur prize from Télé-Québec’s Fabrique culturelle.


Special mention: Le Chemin rouge Thérèse Ottawa - Canada - 15 min


Young Hope Mainfilm Award 
 Xik VuhEdgar Sajcabun - Guatemala 12 min

For weaving a tale on screen that plays out with the grace of a kite in the sky and for finding the figure of destiny in the smile of a child at the forest’s edge and in its mysterious depths, in a film with a remarkably mastered narrative structure, Mainfilm’s Jeune Espoir prize is awarded to Edgar Sajabun for his short Xih Vuh.

The APTN Award to an indigenous filmmaker who had a special accomplishment during the previous year :

Tracey Deer forMohawk Girls (TV Serie)

It’s quite a treacherous twisting road from documentary to fiction. This shift in gears has been made brilliantly by the director of a remarkable TV series that provides a funny and intelligent look at contemporary Aboriginal women, with no taboos.

Tracey Deer has been awarded the APTN 2015 prize for Mohawk Girls, the TV serie.



Information : IXION Communications 514 495 8176, henry.welsh@ixioncommunications.com