Natar Ungalaaq

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Natar Ungalaaq
Years active1991–present

Natar Ungalaaq (born 1959) is a Canadian Inuit actor, filmmaker, and sculptor whose artwork is in many major collections of Inuit art worldwide. Before playing the lead roles in Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner (2001) and The Necessities of Life (Ce qu'il faut pour vivre) (2008), Ungalaaq played major roles in other Canadian and American films, including Kabloonak (1995), Glory & Honor (1998) and Frostfire (1994). He is also producer and director of the Inuit Broadcasting Corporation.

He was the carving buddy of director Zacharias Kunuk before they sold their handmade objets d'art to buy their first camera gear in 1981 and start a production company based in an Inuit community that didn't even have a TV.

Natar is also a renowned carver. He began carving when he was 9 or 10 years old, using his grandfathers tools. A carving of a Sedna made of white soapstone, "Sedna with a Hairbrush 1985", is featured in the National Gallery of Canada's collection.[1]

In 2016, he made his debut as a director, codirecting the film Searchers with Kunuk.[2]


Year Title Role
1994 Frost Fire (TV) Inuit
Trial at Fortitude Bay Tommy
1995 Kabloonak Mukpullu
1998 Glory & Honor (TV) Ootah
2001 Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner Atanarjuat
2004 Sleep Murder (TV) Jimmy Tarniq
2006 The Journals of Knud Rasmussen Nuqallaq
2008 The Necessities of Life (Ce qu'il faut pour vivre) Tiivii
2013 Maïna Tadio
2016 Iqaluit Noah
2018 The Grizzlies Pete


Ungalaaq won the Genie Award for Best Actor at the 29th Genie Awards for his role in Ce qu'il faut pour vivre. He also won the Jutra Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role and the Best Actor award at the Palm Springs International Film Festival for the same performance.

In September 2009, Ungalaaq was presented with an award of distinction by the Nunavut Film Development Corporation. This award recognized Natar's body of work and his contribution to Nunavut's film community.[3]


External links[edit]