The legend of how Atanarjuat wins the hand of beautiful Atuat is a well-known Inuit tale from the first millennium. By sprinting across the Arctic ice, he escapes his rival’s ambush and lifts an old Shaman’s curse, ending the cycle of jealousy, murder and revenge in his small nomadic community. This screen adaptation of a story handed down through oral tradition was shot in the Inuktitut language with an all-Indigenous crew. Costumes, tools and dwellings were recreated based on Inuit story-telling and sketches from British expeditions. Isuma, co-founded by Zacharias Kunuk in 1990, was the first Inuit production company. Dedicated to preserving Inuit culture and language in film and television, Isuma became a prototype for other Indigenous media companies worldwide. With this film, they created a spectacular, award-winning masterpiece.
by Zacharias Kunuk
with Natar Ungalaaq, Sylvia Ivalu, Peter-Henry Arnatsiaq