Free Ottawa Premiere of 'We Were Children' Nov. 25

Rene Batson as Glen (7/8 years old) and Kristen Harris as Lebret Nun.
Photo courtesy of The NFB.

The National Film Board of Canada (NFB) will present the Ottawa premiere of We Were Children (Eagle Vision/eOne/NFB) on Sunday, November 25, 2012, with a free public screening at 1:30 p.m. at the Library and Archives Canada Auditorium, 395 Wellington Street. This special screening is presented in collaboration with the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada (TRC) and Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada. Lisa Meeches, First Nations filmmaker and executive producer of We Were Children, will attend at the Ottawa premiere.

Directed by Tim Wolochatiuk and written by Jason Sherman, We Were Children tells the heartbreaking true story of Lyna Hart and Glen Anaquod, who were removed from their homes at the ages of four and six and forced to adapt to a strange, threatening new world in Canada’s residential school system. Blending stunning dramatic storytelling with unflinching documentary narratives, the film gives voice to two children trapped in a system that would impact their lives forever.

Wolochtiuk spoke with Georgia Straight prior to the film’s premiere at the Vancouver International Film Festival this fall and described how the style of the film helped further the cause of the voices heard in the film. “How do you tell a story that stands 130 years and deals with over 150,000 children,” said Wolochtiuk. “The re-enactments I think serve to take the audience to places where a documentary wouldn’t be able to take you.” The film seems to have had a transformative effect for Hart, as she noted described the film as part of her “healing journey” and told the crowd at the imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival in Toronto, “We know now what pain looks like and now it’s our goal to capture the healing and forgiveness.”

We Were Children is a co-production of Eagle Vision Inc., eOne and the NFB, with the participation of Manitoba Film and Music, the Canada Media Fund and the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network. The film is produced by Kyle Irving and executive produced by Lisa Meeches for Eagle Vision and Laszlo Barna and Loren Mawhinney for eOne, with David Christensen as producer and executive producer for the NFB. 

We Were Children screens Sunday, November 25th at 1:30pm at Library and Archives Canada, 395 Wellington St. Reminder: this event is FREE!