Signatories of the Arctic Indigenous Film Fund agreement pose for a picture at the Indigenous Film Conference at the Sami University of Applied Sciences in Kautokeino, Norway. March 8, 2018. Photo: Ulannaq Ingeman/ Arctic Indigenous Film Fund

Arctic Indigenous Film Fund launches in Norway

As climate change brings increased international attention to the Arctic, Indigenous filmmakers across the circumpolar countries will have a new resource to help them tell their own stories.
March 14, 2018

Text by Levon Sevunts

The Arctic Indigenous Film Fund (AIFF) launched last week at the Indigenous Film Conference at the Sami University of Applied Sciences in Kautokeino, Norway.

It’s an international collaboration between the Canada Media Fund, the International Sami Film Institute, Nunavut Film Development Corporation, Greenland Film Makers and Archy, Russia.

Representatives of all six organizations were present to sign the partnership agreement, which will be preserved in a traditional Sami chest. The signing ceremony at the conference was witnessed by more than 120 representatives from the international film and television industry.

The Norwegian government will provide $1 million in seed money to help kick-start the circumpolar collaboration project that includes partners from Alaska, Canada, Greenland, Norway, Sweden, Finland and Russia. Eventually the fund hopes to become self-sufficient thanks to the revenues its activities will generate.

The goal of AIFF is to support high-quality film and TV productions and co-productions with Indigenous peoples in Arctic regions and create new financing models that facilitate audiovisual production by Indigenous peoples in the Arctic, organizers said in a statement.

“AIFF creates a platform for Indigenous filmmakers from all across the Arctic to collaborate,” the statement said. “The aim is to enhance Indigenous communities and create new business opportunities in remote Arctic areas.”


AIFF will also actively work to give young Indigenous people in the Arctic opportunities to work in the media and digital business in their own communities, organizers said.

The fund will also build a network between film institutions, companies, producers and Universities, thereby strengthening business and competitive advantages; organize film and TV education for young Indigenous talents; and lead common projects and programs with partners.

This story is posted on Independent Barents Observer as part of Eye on the Arctic, a collaborative partnership between public and private circumpolar media organizations.