WOMEN OF THE WHITE BUFFALO
A feature Documentary by Deborah Anderson
Raising the Voices of the Native American Women
For centuries, the historical narrative has been rewritten to conceal the unthinkable crimes against humanity on which this country was founded. These historical violations and the present day systemic oppression of indigenous communities not only go unacknowledged, they are often denied by those in positions of power. Native Americans have been driven off 99% of their land and herded into so – called “reservations” where they have been subjected to some of the worst poverty and unthinkable living conditions in the country.
These reservations have the highest rates of violence in the United States as well as appallingly high rates of domestic violence, rape, sexual assault and human tracking. As Native children and women continue to go missing along with being raped and abused at a rate four times the national average it is time we gave these women back their voices so this atrocity finally stops.
The objective is to bring our feature documentary to completion, so as to bring the stories and voices of Native American women, often lost in the chaos of the world’s political state and blatant disregard for indigenous life, to light. With exclusive access to the Pine Ridge reservation, one of the most poverty stricken places in the United States of America, we met with the women who reside there. In recognizing that art reaches a broad audience and brings issues center stage with objectivity, the intention of the interviews captured with these women was to hear about their current situation living on the reservation and creatively document their stories with integrity, honor and humility. The results are mind opening and heart breaking, with a deep sense of connection to the lives of these incredible women.
Tata, a 10 year Lakota old girl with an alcoholic and Meth addicted mother who is now being raised by Vandee, a formerly sex trafficked teen, whose found healing and purpose by helping others. Delacina Chief Eagle, a 20 year old and survivor of multiple rapes and abuse now studying Tribal Law and helping the youth in their Native ways. Sunrose Iron shell, a 32 year old, hip hop spoken word poetry slamming, school teacher who has returned to the Rez after an education in America to help her students remember the Lakota way. Vandee, a 42 year old woman who escaped sex trafficking as a teen to now run an organization helping victims, as well as raising Tata. Julie White Wolf, a fierce 46 year old woman running a safe house for young kids to help combat the Meth infused reservation crisis. Her life is routinely threatened by drug lords. Sharon Fool Bull, a 60 year old woman experiencing the loss of her daughter from suicide that may have been foul play. Nobody will investigate because of the lack of resource and police numbers. Carol Iron Rope, a 67 year old woman, a true matriarch, reminding her nation of their ways on her weekly Lakota radio show. Unci Marie, a 97 year old elder whose activism has seen the recent hundred years of the US Governments tragic oppression and continues to work for her people.
Raising Money and Awareness
It is important to raise our awareness of these women as their voices are going unheard. Murdered, sex trafficked and missing Indigenous women are being swept under the rug at an alarming rate which should not be happening in this current day and age. Kidnapped indigenous women as the consciousness of the non Native people is that Native American lives hold no value.
Telling the stories of the past, present and future of the Native Americans will allow the wisdom of the Grandmothers to be heard, not only helping them heal from their historical wounds, yet open the eyes of the non indigenous people that have no idea of what is going on within these lives. Deborah Anderson has currently an exhibit titled “Women of the White Buffalo” at Leica Gallery, Los Angeles. This exhibit features preliminary images taken during the Documentary’s principle photography shoot last April in the Pine Ridge Reservation. The exhibit serves as a fundraiser for the film’s post production and distribution expenses. A portion of the proceeds from the film will go straight back to the Pine Ridge community.
Filming took place in February/March in Pine Ridge South Dakota and Santa Fe, New Mexico. All prep for post is complete and full post production (editing) begins 1st of June.
Tentative date for film completion December 2018.
DIRECTOR/PRODUCER – DEBORAH ANDERSON “a photographer whose distinctive sensuality is located somewhere between classic French erotica and Helmut Newton” (Los Angeles Times) Her work has graced the covers of albums and magazines, the walls of infamous hotels and private homes worldwide with an expansive A list clientele. Deborah’s first feature documentary film project entitled AROUSED, a fine art book and feature documentary film featuring 16 world renowned female adult film stars, was theatrically released reaching #3 on iTunes documentary most viewed list and is currently featured on Showtime and Amazon. She has created short films for various artists including award winning writer and activist Eve Ensler for her One Billion Rising organization called MY REVOLUTION featuring Rosario Dawson. Poet, Gina Loring collaborated on the short film WALKING PRAYERS that went viral and was featured in the New York Times
PRODUCER – ADAM SCHOMER is a documentary film/tv director and producer and the president of i2i Productions. His award winning film THE HIGHEST PASS (2012) was theatrically released and took a deep look at fear and death amidst an epic Himalayan motorcycle adventure. THE POLYGON (2014) explored the villages most affected by forty years of Soviet nuclear testing. ONE LITTLE PILL (2015) reveals a new method to treat alcoholism that has been held back for too long. He returned to the Himalayas to produce and direct THE ROAD TO DHARMA (2018), a 10-episode docu-series for television currently in post production, takes us on an motorcycle yogic adventure. Recently, Adam Schomer produced and released the feature documentary HEAL (2017) that looks at the science and journey behind changing one’s beliefs, thoughts, emotions and perceptions in order to cure disease. HEAL was theatrically released, is a #1 Best-Selling Documentary on iTunes.
PRODUCER – KUMIKO HAYASHI was born in Santa Fe, New Mexico. She is the founder of Soka Vision, an organization dedicated to creating value and community through media. She is the director and producer of the film, THE ROOTS AWAKEN (2017) a documentary about indigenous youth in Ecuador rising up in a united prayer to protect their culture and territory. AMANECER (2014) is a feature film about the birth of the indigenous Hip Hop movement in South America. She is a director, producer, and cinematographer that has worked on film projects with indigenous people in the countries of Haiti, Ecuador, Colombia, Turkey, and Brazil. In August of 2017 she produced the first Permaculture Convergence with the Lakota people on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. She is currently establishing a healing center in the Ecuadorian Amazon Rainforest for the preservation of ancestral cultures and medicine.
EXECUTIVE PRODUCER – LEKHA SINGH, a successful artist in her own right, has traveled the globe creating art that expresses the commonality of human experience by finding startling and impossible beauty in poor, little known places of destitution and desolation. She produced, co-directed BEYOND RIGHT AND WRONG, Stories of Justice and Forgiveness. winning many awards amongst which, Best Avant Garde Film by American Psychological Association, Best Documentary Film at Fingal Film Festival and runner-up for Best Documentary at LA Jewish Film Festival. 2012. As executive Producer, THE SQUARE was Oscar nominated and also won several Emmy Awards, and received the Directors Guild of America. 2013. She was Executive Producer on, FOOD CHAINS which won many awards including the James Beard Award for Specials and the Brit Doc Impact Award in 2014.