Docs

XTR to produce “Lakota Nation vs. the United States” from director Jesse Short Bull

Documentary studio XTR is currently in production on a feature-length documentary chronicling the Lakota people’s quest to reclaim the Black Hills. Lakota Nation vs. the United States hails from Oglala Sioux director ...
September 22, 2021

Documentary studio XTR is currently in production on a feature-length documentary chronicling the Lakota people’s quest to reclaim the Black Hills.

Lakota Nation vs. the United States hails from Oglala Sioux director Jesse Short Bull, a 2016 Sundance Institute Native American and Indigenous Program Development Grant recipient and board member of the Black Hills Film Festival.

He is joined by co-director Laura Tomaselli, who edited the documentary features MLK/FBI and Surge. Benjamin Hedin (MLK/FBI, Two Trains Runnin’) serves as producer.

Executive producers include Emmy-winning actor Mark Ruffalo, and author, activist and Emmy winner Sarah Eagle Heart, as well as Kathryn Everett and Bryn Mooser from XTR.

Lakota Nation vs. the United States features interviews with a number of Indigenous citizens, many central to the effort to regain control of the Black Hills land that stretches across South Dakota, Wyoming and Montana, while offering context around the history of land theft and genocide.

Highlighted in the documentary are Nick Tilsen and Krystal Two Bulls, activists and founders of the #landback movement in South Dakota.

“There is much work to be done in order to begin to reckon with the attempted erasure of our culture and stealing of rightful and sacred land,” Short Bull said in a statement. “Lakota Nation vs. the United States isn’t an isolated event in history books — we’re all still paying for it. Our work through this film confronts episodes of our history that have conveniently been chosen to be forgotten, in order to lead to solutions and cease such deplorable atrocities from happening against generations to come.”

“This is a timely story with powerful voices on screen and behind the scenes, driving essential change,” Ruffalo added. “The fight for Black Hills is far from over and our intention is to support the Lakota people by raising awareness for the injustices they face in present-day America.”

Sales will be handled by Cinetic Media, which is also playing a key role in the finance strategy for the film.

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