Arviat filmmakers, 21 and 22, head to Quebec for advanced training

Two young Nunavut filmmakers are in Quebec City this week for advanced training at a film production company, which they'll use to co-produce their own short documentary. "It's fun work," said 21-year-old Sam Pauppa.

Sam Pauppa, Jamie Okatsiak to learn professional skills, shoot documentary

Sam Pauppa of Arviat is in Quebec City this week learning new techniques for filmmaking. 'It's fun work,' the 21-year-old said in Inuktitut. (submitted by Vincent L'Hérault)

Two young Nunavut filmmakers are in Quebec City this week for advanced training at a film production company, which they'll use to co-produce their own short documentary.

Pauppa got his start with the long-running Arviat Film Society. (submitted by Vincent L'Hérault)
"It's fun work," said 21-year-old Sam Pauppa, in Inuktitut. He headed south on Sunday along with Jamie Okatsiak, 22.

"I really enjoy being able to try all the new equipment and just learning new innovative tools," Pauppa said. "I enjoy talking to people."

The trip was made possible by the Arviat Film Society and ARCTIConnexion.

Gord Billard, who works with the Arviat Film Society, accompanied Jamie Okatsiak and Pauppa to Quebec City. (submitted by Vincent L'Hérault)

Vincent L'Hérault, ARCTIConnexion's director, spent two months in Arviat last summer working with the pair, who had been hired to document several local research projects underway in the hamlet.

"At the end of the summer, Sam and Jamie were so good, they were so engaged, and they were so happy to work with movie production that I suggested to them that they come down south to get more professional skills," he said.

Jamie Okatsiak at work. (submitted by Vincent L'Hérault)
L'Hérault paired them up with the Quebec production company, 4elements Productions, where they'll have a chance to learn about everything from writing to interviewing, setting up a shoot and editing the results.

Vincent L'Hérault said his interest is in helping the next generation tell their stories.

"I am only there to help," L'Hérault said, "and I think this is the best way because I am not part of the the Inuit culture and I don't fully understand the Inuit culture, so if we want to document it and keep it alive then pass it to the future generation, then it needs to be done by local youth."

This week is all about training. Next week, Okatsiak and Pauppa will start work on a three- to four-minute documentary of their own design.

"Today everything has to do with social media and cell phones and this is one way we can keep up with it," Okatsiak said in Inuktitut.

The pair say they owe their success to the many filmmaking opportunities in their hometown.

Comments

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.