In honor of the The Academy Awards, Red Nation International Film Festival thought we’d share some facts of these ground-breaking American Indian Oscar Winners, Nominees and Activists. This list does not include the Governor Awards. The Academy Awards (Oscars) and The Governor Awards are two different Awards presented on two different dates.
1970, Chief Dan George was the first Native American nominee for a worthy performance in ‘Little Big Man’
1973, Marlon Brando took a stand for American Indian Image and the Industry’s treatment of American Indian in not accepting the Oscar for “Godfather’ instead sent Sacheen Littlefeather to speak on his behalf.
There have only been two Native ACTORS to be nominated for an Oscar;
Chief Dan George for his role in the 1970 Little Big Man
Graham Greene for his roles in the 1991 Dance with Wolves
There has only been one Native to *WIN* an Oscar;
1982, Buffy Sainte Marie (Musician) – Best Music, Original Song for An Officer and a Gentleman, For the song “Up Where We Belong”.
There has only been one Native FILMMAKER to be short-listed for an Oscar;
2000, Joanelle Romero’s (actor/director/producer/founder of Red Nation Film Festival/Native Women in Film) documentary short, American Holocaust: When It’s All Over I’ll Still Be Indian, narrated by Edward Asner, makes the Academy’s Documentary Short Branch. She was shortlisted in preliminary round. This documentary is the first and only film that compares Hitler’s attempted genocide of German Jews with the U.S. government’s treatment of American Indians and the lasting effects on the culture today.
Romero’s is the only Native filmmaker to date in The Academy in Motion Picture Arts & Sciences that was short-listed for an Oscar in the Documentary Short Branch. Romero is the first Native filmmaker to receive in 2005 the Armin T. Wegner Humanitarian Award for “the vision to see the truth and the courage to speak it.” Romero as of 2016 is a member of The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences.
Romero’s film was entered into the The Academy Awards for OSCAR consideration in 2000. 22 short films were entered that year, then Academy’s Documentary Branch determined the shortlist in a preliminary round of voting “9 films were short-listed out of 22 films submitted that year. American Holocaust: When It’s All Over I’ll Still Be Indian was part of the 9 chosen. Then five were nominated. Before the film was removed from Youtube in 2009, it had reached 3 million views . You can watch this award-winning film on Red Nation Television Network. www.rednationtv.com