Monday, October 7, 2013

My Cousin Lived Next Door - Film Premiere

Laksakla Productions Ltd. presents
The World Premiere Screening of
My Cousin Lived Next Door
Saturday, October 12, 2013, 7 p.m.
Quadra Island Community Centre
$5 Suggested Donation
(Proceeds to Qwallawyuw Headstart Preschool Program)

Quadra Film-maker gives Premiere Screening on Home Turf

Photo Credit: Don Chaput
Award-winning Kwagiulth film-maker Lori Lewis hosts the world premiere screening and celebration of her new short fiction film ‘My Cousin Lived Next Door’ this coming Saturday, October 12 at 7 p.m. on home turf in the Quadra Island Community Centre. Says Lewis, ‘This will be the only screening of the film before it has a year of touring international film festivals.”

First independent production - In 2008 Lewis received the Best Live Action Short Award at the 33rd Annual American Indian Film Festival in San Francisco for directing ‘Niigaanibatowaad: FrontRunners’, a film that continues to be aired on Aboriginal Peoples Television Network (APTN). This past year, with assistance from The Canada Council for the Arts, Aboriginal Media Program, Lewis and her company, Laksakla Productions, took her script for ‘My Cousin Lived Next Door’, and with producer Heidi Ridgway and a local cast and crew, created the first piece of fiction to be filmed in Cape Mudge Village, with additional scenes in Campbell River and Vancouver. “We started filming last October,” says Lewis. “This is a complete community effort, utilizing Quadra Island’s current and burgeoning film talent.”

Top Canadian talent - The Canada Council grant allowed Lewis the opportunity to bring on board some of the best production people in Canada: Don Chaput, director of photography, is known for his documentary work for APTN, CBC, BCTV, BBC, NBC, PBS and Vision; John Gurdebeke, editor, from Manitoba, has been film editor and sound designer for Guy Maddin (well-known Canadian director) and Isabella Rossellini; Marie Clements, actor, is a Métis playwright, performer, director, producer and screenwriter, and her work ‘Unnatural and Accidental’ received seven nominations at the Genie and Leo Awards; Russell Wallace, actor and composer, is a traditional Lil’wat singer who has received Juno nominations, and Aboriginal Music and Native American Music awards.

New talent – The cast boasts a group of talented local First Nations youth, and introduces Nyla Carpentier in her first screen role. Carpentier was last seen in the North Island touring schools with Axis Theatre’s ‘Raven Meets the Monkey King’.

The story‘My Cousin Lived Next Door’ tells the tale of Mary and Nelly, two very close cousins and best friends who grow up on a coastal Native Reserve in British Columbia. Although they are next-door-neighbours, their childhood experiences lead them on two extremely different paths to adulthood. The film, a captivating montage of scenery and imagery, recalls their different journeys as Mary reflects upon her life through her successful and perfect façade.

Where to from here? “I would love to have the film travel to international film festivals around the world,” says Lewis. “At the moment it has been submitted to the Sundance Film Festival and the Vancouver International Women in Film Festival.”

Admission: A suggested donation of $5 at the door will go towards the Qwallawyuw Headstart Preschool Program in memory of Ruth Kenkel, late of Cape Mudge Village. There will be refreshments and a toonie drive to help raise funds for festival submissions.

Further resources:
Facebook –
Don Chaput –
John Gurdebeke -
Marie Clements –


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