Honouring Indigenous Filmmakers – Day 5
(June 19, 2020 – Toronto, ON) National Indigenous History Month began in 1996 after it was proclaimed by then Governor General of Canada Roméo LeBlanc and June 21 was established as National Indigenous People’s Day. Although we have featured Indigenous Canadians on our website since going online un 1998, this year Northernstars is highlighting the careers of Canadian Indigenous actors, directors, producers and screenwriters each day between June 15 and the end of the month. This is our 5th instalment and features actors born in British Columbia, Alberta and Saskatchewan.
Tom Jackson was born on the One Arrow reserve in Saskatchewan and grew up in Winnipeg. He left school at the age of 15 and spent seven years living on the back streets of that city. This experience built the foundation of his character – a tenacious leader determined to succeed with an altruistic capacity to care for others. Appointed an officer of the Order of Canada in 2000 for his music and humanitarian work, Jackson was honoured at the 2007 Junos when the Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences bestowed upon him the Humanitarian Award in recognition for his positive contributions to the social landscape of Canada. In September of 2016 it was announced that Tom Jackson would be given August Schellenberg Award of Excellence. North of 60 fans will know him as Chief Peter Kenidi, a role he portrayed for six seasons. More recently he costarred with Liam Neeson in the 2019 thriller Cold Pursuit.
Carmen Moore recently costarred in the final season of Cardinal. Born on Christmas Eve she is Wet’suwet’en on her father’s side, and Scots/Irish on her mother’s. After leaving Port Moody Senior Secondary in British Columbia, she began to take acting lessons at the Spirit Song Native Theatre Company. She made her film debut in Far from Home: The Adventures of Yellow Dog in 1995. Moore played the part of Rita George in the CBC series, Nothing too Good for a Cowboy, and in 2001 landed the role of Deputy Molly on CBS’s Wolf Lake. In 2011 she was given a Leo Award for her role as Leona Stoney in the first season of Blackstone.
Gerald Auger is of Woodland Cree descent and a graduate of the Grande Prairie Regional College in 1995 with a Marketing Management diploma and a Small Business Management certificate. He also received the Charles S. Noble Student Leadership Award from the Department of Advanced Education and the Province of Alberta. After being spotted at the opening ceremonies of the 1995 Canada Winter Games, he appeared in the 1998 film Gunslinger’s Revenge, which costarred David Bowie and Harvey Keitel. It was the first spaghetti western to use Indigenous actors in roles that called for Indigenous actors. In 1999 Auger became the first Indigenous recipient of the Rotary International Integrity Award for the Avenue of Nations in Alberta.
Northernstars is published in Toronto. We acknowledge that we are on the traditional territory of many nations including the Mississaugas of the Credit, the Anishnabeg, the Chippewa, the Haudenosaunee and the Wendat peoples and that the city and surrounding area is now home to many diverse First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples.