Documentary studio XTR is producing “Lakota Nation vs. United States”, the first film in the history of the Lakota Indians’ struggle to regain control of the Black Hills. Ogalala Sioux directed the Jesse Short Bull feature documentary, co-directed by “MLK / FBI” editor Laura Tomaselli and produced by Benjamin Hayden.
The “Lakota Nation v. United States” will investigate how the Holy Land was stolen by interviewing indigenous citizens in violation of the treaty.
The film was selected by Mark Ruffalo, writer and activist Sarah Eagle Hart, Catherine Everett and Brian Muzer from XTR. Sales will be managed by Synetic Media, who is also working on film funding.
Short Bull is a 2016 Sundance Institute Native American and Indigenous Program Development Grant recipient and board member of the Black Hills Film Festival. Interview topics include Nick Tilsen and Crystal to the Bulls, activists who founded the South Dakota #landback movement.
Also creating a documentary with Raffaello, said Gaul Hart, “It’s my life’s work to use powerful storytelling to share deep perspectives on social, environmental and indigenous justice.” “Knowledge and understanding are essential elements for advocacy and effective change. The multifaceted approach to this project helps to accurately represent the people of Lakota as we now allow healing and remedies.”
The documentary will show a vibrant photographic aesthetic that shows the vast terrain of South Dakota with testimony from interviewers.
“We need to do a lot of work to try to erase the culture and steal the right and holy land,” Short Bull said. “The Lakota Nation vs. the United States is not an isolated incident in the history books – we are all still paying for it. This kind of miserable oppression stops.
XTR’s film director Katherine Everett said, “Our hope is that this thought-provoking meditation on the nature of justice highlights the almost necessary atonement for the misdeeds of history and what can be done in the present and in the past.”
“It’s a timely story with strong voices on screen and behind the scenes,” Ruffalo said. “The fight for the Black Hills is not over yet, and our goal is to raise awareness and support the people of Lakota against the injustices that are facing America today. The realization in the minds of many Americans is that it’s just historical, it’s ‘happened.’ What they don’t understand is that it is happening now. It is happening today, it is immediate and mostly hidden from your eyes. It is a current problem. “