Tag Archives: Johnny Depp

Hopefully it looks like Wounded Knee land sale strategy is working. Johnny Depp not required

So the owner of land at Wounded Knee has again seen another deadline pass without the sale of the land. I’ve blogged a couple of time before about how the tribe should be aggressive over this.

I am delighted when I read this from President Brewer of the Oglala Lakota Nation “Brewer said Czywczynski’s claims are nothing new. “He has been threatening to sell this land for years. This isn’t the first time.”

He added that even if Czywczynski sold Wounded Knee to an outsider, it would be unusable. “One of the problems is that our tribal lands completely surround his 34 acres. There is no way anyone could ever get to this land to do any type of development or anything else… the tribe would not allow it.”

“He wants to sell it, and it has only been valued at about $8,000,” Brewer said. “The owner has valued this land at $6 million, so I say to him, ‘Then why aren’t you paying taxes on land that is valued at $6 million?’ I and some of the descendants of Wounded Knee met with him and I told him, ‘No one will ever buy this.’”

This to me is the ideal stance. Earlier in the year when folks were getting defensive about this I emailed everyone in the Oglala administration I could suggesting the denial of business permits and threatening an eminent domain purchase rendering the land relatively valueless in the market. It is thrilling seeing these stances adopted and working. This is not just about Wounded Knee but all sacred sites. After the Bear Butte sale the concern was that other land owners with land sacred to Indian Country would look to cash in on that. Fingers crossed that this strategy continues to pay off. Ultimately I think the timing of the sale being announced shortly before the 40th Anniversary of the Wounded Knee occupation had much to do with it as he successfully stole the headlines.

I am also glad that the much talked about potential involvement of Johnny Depp has subsided as hopefully he has realized the additional implications of paying anything over the odds for this land. Such behavior of that of the seller cannot be endorsed in any manner.

Read more at Indian Country Today

I detailed more about the timing of the announcements etc in my more in depth blog here. http://rezbomb.com/blog/?p=691

Wounded Knee 1890 and 1973 are both detailed in A Thunder-Being Nation the most comprehensive look at Pine Ridge Indian Reservation made over 13 years. 10 hours of extras are on the Ultimate Edition DVD.

Our DVD’s are available at amazon or www.inyoentertainment.com where you can save 15% using the coupon code Blog15 to save 15% or Blog20 to save 20% when spending $60 or more. The closer we get to recovering our costs on our films the quicker we can start looking to invest more in other projects in Indian Country although it’s an uphill battle finding an audience (as discussed in my previous post).

Trailer

Watch Al Jazeera’s interesting program about Johnny Depp’s Tonto & Hollywood’s Native American narrative + my comments

I just saw this a couple of days ago and thought it was worth sharing as it has a strong objective voice from some key individuals from Indian Country. It’s hard to see objectivity to the film in articles written by people who criticised it for a year before seeing it as they clearly don’t want to turn on themselves and do anything other than support their criticism. I haven’t seen it because I don’t go to the movies much so have no opinion on it.

The program also talks about getting independent movies set in Indian Country with home grown talent out there. Having made a movie, a feature documentary and a TV series in Indian Country, I understand more than most these difficulties. The sad part is that the audience within Indian Country is big enough to support small independent films but it rarely does. Even with the all star cast of our series The Hub, only a handful of dvd’s have been sold and there has only been one on demand view of it’s first Indian Market special episode since it was made available 3 weeks ago. I get great feedback from those that watch this fun, inspirational show but the lack of support within the community means we won’t be able to do any more. (click the link at the top right of the page to find our on demand films that can be viewed now anywhere in the world).

Al Jazeera has a long history of covering issues from Indian Country in more detail than any other news organization in the most objective way. They deserve a lot of credit for leading the way on this.

Our DVD’s are available at amazon or www.inyoentertainment.com where you can save 15% using the coupon code Blog15 to save 15% or Blog20 to save 20% when spending $60 or more.

Why Johnny Depp spending anything more than a few thousand bucks for Wounded Knee would be a big mistake

A simple dialogue in an interview with the Daily Mail newspaper in the UK has blown up around Indian Country with Johnny Depp expressing his interest to help out someway to see a good resolution to the Wounded Knee land sale issue.

I’ve written before on the dangers of allowing the landowner to “shake down” Indian Country for a huge sum of money when the land is only worth a few thousand dollars and the tribe had adopted a more aggressive tone which is what I had been advocating. Specifically threatening an eminent domain purchase and more importantly making sure it was clear no business licences would be issued to anyone looking to exploit the land, rendering it relatively valueless in monetary terms.

The issue had more or less died down till this Depp quote. I think the landowner might be thinking Christmas might be coming early this year now this has gone public. The most important thing here is that A. The land is not exploited and B. That landowners don’t see sacred land as a potential cash cow. Look at Bear Butte for example.

I hope that cool heads prevail and that Depp gets good council. Clearly his intentions are very worth while.

I detailed more about the timing of the announcements etc in my more in depth blog here. http://rezbomb.com/blog/?p=691

Wounded Knee 1890 and 1973 are both detailed in A Thunder-Being Nation the most comprehensive look at Pine Ridge Indian Reservation made over 13 years. 10 hours of extras are on the Ultimate Edition DVD.

Our DVD’s are available at amazon or www.inyoentertainment.com where you can save 15% using the coupon code Blog15 to save 15% or Blog20 to save 20% when spending $60 or more. The closer we get to recovering our costs on our films the quicker we can start looking to invest more in other projects in Indian Country although it’s an uphill battle finding an audience (as discussed in my previous post).

Trailer

Johnny Depp and the Dialogue within Indian Country

It seems to me that Johnny Depp’s name is being invoked regularly by various people in relations to Indian Country and I am curious to see how much traffic it draws as opposed to dialogues about the many pressing major issues in Indian Country as well as dialogues about the amazing things going on in Indian Country by it’s best and brightest. I guess I’ll see in a few days about how the traffic to this post compares with my others. I’ll keep you posted but also a lot of those commentators obsessing about Depp for months in some respect are continuing to validate that sad old state of affairs which is what those outside Indian Country are doing in relation to Indian Country is what gets the attention.

If these commentators were spending the same time highlighting the work of Ryan Red Corn, the 1491’s, Steven Paul Judd, Virgil Ortiz etc etc etc, they’d be helping them all take their profiles to new levels as well as sharing their inspirational work with a community that needs these role models to inspire youth.

My feeling is that Depp is as worthy of conversation as anything else but it’s become so disproportionate in the dialogues from some that it takes away from their credibility in terms of focusing on the more serious issues of the day.

The lack of support for the positive within Indian Country is highlighted in my previous blog http://rezbomb.com/blog/?p=714

our DVD’s highlighting many aspects of Indian Country are available at amazon or www.inyoentertainment.com where you can save 15% using the coupon code Blog15 to save 15% or Blog20 to save 20% when spending $60 or more.