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imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival

Presenting Sponsor: Bell Media

Michael Greyeyes to Receive
2018 August Schellenberg Award of Excellence

Sponsored by ACTRA National
and Individual Donors

imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival is proud to announce that Nêhiyaw actor, choreographer, director and educator Michael Greyeyes will receive the 2018 August Schellenberg Award of Excellence.

The August Schellenberg Award of Excellence (the “Augie”) is an annual prize that recognizes significant professional and personal achievement by an Indigenous actor, of any gender, from Turtle Island (North America). Michael Greyeyes will receive his award at the imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival’s Awards Presentation on Sunday, October 21 at the TIFF Bell Lightbox. 

August ‘Augie’ Schellenberg is an icon, but to me he is much more than this,” says Michael Greyeyes. “Augie was my friend and mentor. In his work, and the way he lived his life. I learned from him in countless ways. This award is a profound honour and affirms that Augie’s commitment to excellence and his spirit of generosity remain with me.”

In a career spanning 31 years, Michael Greyeyes has moved fluidly between stage and screen, from his work as a dancer with The National Ballet of Canada to diverse performances in Bruce McDonald’s Dance Me Outside, to his title role in Crazy Horse (TNT), and for acclaimed directors such as John Sayles, Chris Eyre, and Terrence Malick.

His selected directing credits include: Pimooteewin (The Journey), the first Cree language opera with libretto by Tomson Highway, Almighty Voice and his Wife (Native Earth Performing Arts) and Seven Seconds (2010 imagineNATIVE). In 2010, Greyeyes founded Signal Theatre and has created a number of full-length theatre works, including from thine eyes, Nôhkom, and A Soldier’s Tale for the National Arts Centre, and Bearing, a searing exploration of Canada’s Indian residential school legacy for the 2017 Luminato Festival. He is an Associate Professor in the Theatre department at York University, where he teaches devised theatre and screen performance. Professor Greyeyes is published in the Canadian Theatre Review, Theatre Research in Canada, and Performing Indigeneity: New Essays on Canadian Theatre, Vol. 5.

Most recently, he has appeared in AMC’s Fear the Walking Dead and in an acclaimed performance as legendary Hunkpapa leader Sitting Bull, in Woman Walks Ahead (A24) co-starring Jessica Chastain, that received its world premiere at TIFF 2017. He can next be seen in the third season of HBO’s True Detective and as the lead in Jeff Barnaby’s feature film Blood Quantum.

The August Schellenberg Award of Excellence was launched in partnership with Joan Karasevich Schellenberg to honour her late husband, actor August (Augie) Schellenberg, and the spirit of his work. This annual award is presented to gifted Indigenous actors based on the longevity and impact of their careers, as well as their professionalism and involvement in mentorship and community work. Past Augie recipients include Tantoo Cardinal in 2015, Tom Jackson in 2016, and Tina Keeper in 2017.


The Augie is sponsored by ACTRA National and through individual donations. To donate to the August Schellenberg Award of Excellence, please visit CanadaHelps.

The full schedule for the 19th Annual imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival is now available online.

imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival
October 17-21, 2018

Tickets for single screenings and events are on sale now
Call - TIFF Box Office on +1 416-599-TIFF (8433)
Online - TIFF Festival Partners and Third Party Events
In Person - TIFF Box Office at 350 King St W, Toronto, ON

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imagineNATIVE Film and Media Arts Festival is presented by BellMedia and further supported by TD Bank Group, Royal Bank of Canada and APTN among many others.

Media Contact: Damien Nelson, damien@wantandable.ca, +1 416.693.4425

About August Schellenberg - Montreal-born Mohawk actor, August Schellenberg, performed in hundreds of theatre, film and television productions throughout his long career including Saving Grace, Free Willy, Black Robe, North of 60 and Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee. He was nominated for an Emmy Award for Best Supporting Actor in a Miniseries or Movie for his role as Chief Sitting Bull in Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee, and played the titular role in an all-First Nations version of Shakespeare’s King Lear at Ottawa’s National Arts Centre.

The imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival is the world’s largest festival showcasing film, video, audio, and digital & interactive media made by Indigenous screen content creators. The Festival presents compelling and distinctive works from Canada and around the globe, reflecting the diversity of the world’s Indigenous nations and illustrating the vitality and excellence of Indigenous arts, perspectives, and cultures in contemporary media.

About ACTRA - ACTRA (Alliance of Canadian Cinema, Television and Radio Artists) is the union of more than 25,000 professional performers working in recorded media in Canada including TV, film, radio and digital media. ACTRA negotiates and administers collective agreements to provide performers with equitable compensation as well as safe and reasonable working conditions. ACTRA is proud to lobby for regulation and government policies that protect our culture and encourage audio-visual production in all genres, thereby expanding work opportunities for Canadian performers.

Last Call for Screening Sponsors!
imagineNATIVE is currently accepting sponsorship for screenings at our 19th Annual Film + Media Arts Festival. Ignite your brand through this interactive sponsorship opportunity. imagineNATIVE offers great benefits that help you reach an Indigenous and non-Indigenous audience from a national and international level (approximately 30,000 guests).

For more information, please contact our fundraising team before October 4, 2018 at fundraising@imaginenative.org.