Home » Penticton Indian band members star in new BC film about residential schools

Penticton Indian band members star in new BC film about residential schools

by Stewart Cole

When the lights go down at the Cleland Theater this Saturday, on-screen performances by several members of the Penticton Indian Band will be seconds apart.

Bones of Crows, a Vancouver and Toronto film festival drama about school survivors, comes to the local theater for a free screening on December 10 at 7 p.m. and Penticton is expected to be well represented.

Directed and produced by Métis screenwriter Marie Clements, the film follows Cree matriarch Aline Spears through her life, including her experiences at school and the lasting impact it has had on her family across generations.

A young version of Spears is played in the film by Summer Testawich from PIB.

“We are extremely excited and look forward to seeing the debut of the acting skills of community members from the Penticton Indian Band who appear and play some important roles in the film,” said PIB’s Greg Gabriel.

The film was originally released on September 10, 2022 and has since been playing in theaters across BC. and the rest of Canada. After the Penticton screening, the film will be screened Dec. 12 at the Oliver Theater for Keremeos, Osoyoos and Oliver Grades 10 to 12 students.

According to the Toronto International Film Festival, Bones of Crows is a “powerful indictment of the abuse of indigenous peoples and a moving story of extraordinary resilience and resistance.”

Cleland Theater doors open at 6:30 p.m. and free tickets are available for free at the Penticton Community Centre, City Hall and the PIB office. The screening will be followed by a facilitated discussion about the film.

“We are very grateful for the opportunity to partner with the Penticton Indian Band to support the screening of this important film in our community,” said Penticton Mayor Julius Bloomfield.

“This is an important opportunity for our communities to come together and learn more about the tragic history of residential schools and the ongoing intergenerational trauma that is fundamental to reconciliation. I hope to see our community take advantage of this rare opportunity.”


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