The Winnipeg Aboriginal Film Festival is one of the largest festivals of its kind in North America. It showcases the cream of the crop in new indigenous film from throughout North America and around the world.
Rhymes for Young Ghouls opens the festival. It features actor Glen Gould of Mi'kmaq and Italian descent from Cape Breton in Nova Scotia.
Gould is not only an actor, he’s a musician and a director as well. He’s the oldest of four children as well as the father of four children.
When Gould was 17 years old, the National Film Board made a film called Justice Denied. It featured Donald Marshall Jr., Gould's uncle. His grandparents played themselves.
On set, Gould got to know actor Billy Merasty.
"I asked him lots of questions," he recalled. "I couldn’t believe he was an Indian and an actor. He made it seem like it could be possible for me too."
Gould left Nova Scotia for Toronto and joined Native Earth Performing Arts, run by Thomson Highway.
"I got an audition for a play and I got the gig. It was a national tour. That's how it all started for me," he said.
Rhymes for Young Ghouls tells the story about a young girl who challenges the local Indian agent and the residential school. Gould plays the young girl's father.
"It’s a story of empowerment, about aboriginal people taking the power into their own hands," said Gould, adding that "the hero in the film is that young lady, not me."
Gould says the Winnipeg Aboriginal Film Festival is important.
"It showcases the talents of our storytellers, our filmmakers, our actors, our writers. Aboriginal filmmakers don’t always make it into mainstream festivals," he explained.
"There are also workshops for young filmmakers here in Winnipeg. You need these opportunities for young people in order to be able to create future films."
Hear Glen Gould on CBC's Information Radio with host Marcy Markusa at 7 a.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 20. Don't miss Rhymes for Young Ghouls at the Globe Cinema on the evening of Nov. 20.