Nunavut film festival returns for third year in Iqaluit

Seven-day festival opens Monday, will showcase films by northerners; movie screenings are free to attend

The Astro Hill movie theatre in Iqaluit will host the Nunavut International Film Festival. The festival will run from Feb. 20 to Feb. 26 and feature a variety of films and documentaries from northern filmmakers. (Photo by David Lochead)

By David Lochead

The third annual Nunavut International Film Festival returns to Iqaluit this week, and organizer Simeonie Kisa-Knickelbein hopes people will see it as a good chance to experience Inuit cinema.

“There’s a lot of opportunity for Inuit to showcase their work at other festivals,” he said.

“But I think you feel prouder when you can show it to your own territory.”

The festival opens today and runs through Feb. 26. All the film screenings are free for the public.

Films will be shown at the Astro Hill movie theatre in Iqaluit each day, with weekday screenings taking place at 7 p.m. Kisa-Knickelbein said there will also be prizes at the door.

On Saturday, Feb. 25, children’s films will be screened.

This year, the festival’s northern focus will be prominent with works by filmmakers from areas such as the Northwest Territories and Greenland, as well as Nunavut.

Films showing at the festival include Slash/Back, directed by Nyla Innuksuk, and Ever Deadly, directed by Tanya Tagaq and Chelsea McMullan.

Kisa-Knickelbein said he is looking forward to Friday’s films in particular, which feature a musical theme.

That day will include Elisapie, Facing the Music, a Greenlandic film on the personal and artistic journey of musician Elisapie Isaac. There is also the Qilautiga, which Kisa-Knickelbein said is about Greenlandic drum dancing and talks about how the drummers experienced colonialism.

Northern Haze will also play on Friday, which is a documentary on the Igloolik-based rock band by the same name.

“I think it’s going to be well received,” Kisa-Knickelbein said of the documentary.

As a filmmaker himself with experience as the third assistant director for Slash/Back, Kisa-Knickelbein said the festival can be a chance to see what other filmmakers are creating and take inspiration from it.

There will also be workshops at the festival, held at the theatre.

One will be held by the Independent Production Fund, a foundation that funds Canadian digital media companies, on how the foundation can help filmmakers. It will be held Feb. 22 from noon to 1:30 p.m.

The second workshop will be held by Chelsea McMullan and Sophie Proulx-Lachance, director of Elisapie, Facing The Music, on the process of creating their films, which takes place Feb. 23 from noon to 1:30 p.m.

With Nunavut being relatively new to hosting film festivals, there is excitement in showcasing movies in the territory, Kisa-Knickelbein said.

“We’re able to bring our own little quirks to it,” he said.

More information is available on the film festival’s Facebook page.


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(3) Comments:

  1. Posted by Baffin Phones on

    There’s a new cell phone store beside the theater too called Baffin Phones. In the Astro Hill complex.

    • Posted by DudeTown on

      Go advertise your store somewhere else. That is disrespectful.

    • Posted by Who dis? on

      Same store, new name.


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