American Indian Film Festival

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American Indian Film Festival
LocationSan Francisco, California, U.S.
Festival dateNovember

The American Indian Film Festival is an annual non-profit film festival in San Francisco, California, United States. It is the world's oldest venue dedicated solely to Native American/First Nations films and prepared the way for the 1979 formation of the American Indian Film Institute.

According to the Institute,[1] the Festival was first presented Seattle, Washington in 1975 and moved in 1977 to San Francisco, where it remains today. In 1979, the Festival was incorporated.

Over 3,100 films have been screened from Native American/First Nations communities in the U.S. and Canada, and the festival includes events such as film screenings, panel discussions, an awards ceremony and networking events.[2]

This festival is not to be confused by the Native American Film and Video Festival, which was founded in 1979.

Recent festival winners include:[3]

Best Films[edit]


Year Film Producer(s)
1987 Loyalties William Johnston and Ronald Lillie
1988 Journey to Spirit Island Bruce D. Clark and Rodger Spero
1989 Powwow Highway Jan Weiringa


Year Film Producer(s)
1990 Dances With Wolves Jim Wilson and Kevin Costner
1992 Incident at Oglala Arthur Chobanian
1993 Medicine River Barbara Allinson, John Danylkiw and Arvi Liimatainen
1994 Lakota Woman: Siege at Wounded Knee Fred Berner
1995 Dance Me Outside Brian Dennis
1996 Grand Avenue Tony To
1998 Smoke Signals Larry Estes
1999 Unbowed Lisa Karadjian and Nanci Rossov


Year Film Producer(s)
2000 Backroads Shirley Cheechoo, Phyllis Ellis and Christine K. Walker
2001 The Doe Boy Chris Eyre and Anthony Vozza
2002 Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner Paul Apak Angilirq, Norman Cohn, Zacharias Kunuk and Germaine Wong
2003 Dreamkeeper Ron McLeod and Matthew O'Connor
2004 Edge of America Chris Eyre and Willy Holtzman
2005 Johnny Tootall Cynthia Chapman and Danielle Prohom Olson
2006 Expiration Date John Forsen and Rick Stevenson
2007 Imprint Chris Eyre and Michael Linn
2008 Before Tomorrow Stephanie Rituit
2009 Barking Water Chad Burris


Year Film Producer(s)
2010 A Windigo Tale Armand Garnet Ruffo
2011 Shouting Secrets Josef Ueli Bollag and Korinna Sehringer
2012 Mesnak Reginald Vollant
2013 Maïna Yves Fortin and Karine Martin
2014 Drunktown's Finest Chad Burris and Mateo Frazier
2015 Mekko Chad Burris and Jasper Zweibel
2016 Before the Streets Chloe Leriche
2017 Wind River Elizabeth A. Bell, Peter Berg, Matthew George, Basil Iwanyk and Wayne L. Rogers
2018 Angelique's Isle Amos Adetuyi, Dave Clement, Michelle Derosier and Floyd Kane
2019 Edge of the Knife Jonathan Frantz


  1. ^ "American Indian Film Institute Overview and History webpage". Archived from the original on 2010-03-29. Retrieved 2010-07-03.
  2. ^ "What We Do". American Indian Film Institute. Archived from the original on 2017-04-17. Retrieved 2017-04-16.
  3. ^ AIFI at IMDB

External links[edit]