Inuk Filmmaker Asinnajaq is gaining international recognition for her new short film Three Thousand.
The 12-minute film tells the Inuit story through a combination of archival footage from the 1920’s and present-day animation.
It starts in the past. The archival part is arriving to my grandmother and departing from her into the northern lights and then into the future.
Asinanjaq says that creating the film was a two-year process, as she thoroughly went through archival footage from the National Film Board of Canada to fine tune her story.
I went through the archives with everything that was labelled Inuit. I think I looked at all the archives twice. I remember the first time that there were images that I kind of passed over and remembered and had to go back and find again. Going through them, all of those times really gave me a good idea of what had been captured of life throughout those times.
And while the creation of Three Thousand was a long process to put together, Asinnajaq says it was a difficult and beautiful learning experience to go through.
It was difficult at times and most of the time it was extremely beautiful. I have so many questions and curiosities and so much love for my fellow Inuit. And it’s amazing to see all of the skills people had and all of the things people are capable of doing- and the resourcefulness and creativity. Also, I did have to see some of the hardships people had to endure, and some things that were difficult about how the way Inuit were treated in the past.
The film has since received international recognition and has won the Best Global Indigenous Short Film Award at Skábmagovat Film Festival in Finland.
Most recently, Asinnajaq has been nominated for a Canadian Screen Award for best short documentary, which the filmmaker is still trying to process.
I don’t think that has really caught up with me yet. I am just really happy. You never know if people are going to understand what you are doing or how it will be received…It’s a (heartfelt) feeling to know that other people can connect to that work as well.
The film Three Thousand will be screening at the Berlin film festival, the Big Sky Documentary Film Festival in Montana (Feb 16-25) and the International Sami Institute in Norway in March.