Stories films

Kin Theory, a global network of Indigenous media makers, "Creating Impact Through Solidarity " poster event

April 6, 2022

Kin Theory Panel: "Creating Impact Through Solidarity" at Big Sky Documentary Film Festival 2022

Kin Theory

At the 2022 Big Sky Documentary Film Festival in Missoula, Montana, Nia Tero's Kin Theory team launched their Indigenous media makers database to create a space for community, connection, and career for global Indigenous creators. To celebrate the launch, Kin Theory participated in Big Sky's DocShop by producing a panel focused on holding discussion around impact and solidarity across BIPOC film spaces and activities.

In this video from the event, you will hear the moderator, panelists, and audience members explore what it means for a film to be successful, how we can better support Indigenous creators and other creators of color, and what success for Indigenous and BIPOC-created projects can mean outside of traditional notions of exhibition and distribution.


  • Jessica Ramirez, Creative Producer, Nia Tero (Moderator)
  • Leya Hale, Filmmaker, Bring Her Home
  • Colleen Thurston, Educator and Impact Producer, Daughter of a Lost Bird
  • Chloë Walters-Wallace, Director of Regional Initiatives, Firelight Media

Special thanks to Rachel Gregg and Alana Waksman at Big Sky International Film Festival for their invitation and support, as well as Gita Saedi Kiely (Producer, Director at FilmAid.)


Kin Theory is an Indigenous media makers database that fosters a global community of creators who can connect, share resources, and collaborate. Kin Theory is a project of Nia Tero, a global nonprofit that uplifts Indigenous Peoples in their land stewardship through policy and storytelling work. Learn more and create your own profile at:


(~03:00) Q1: What supports do Indigenous, non-Indigenous BIPOC folks, queer, femmes/non-binary/trans folks need in order to be filmmakers and make work that is produced, seen, and supported?

(~13:00) Q2: How does centering community in filmmaking change what it means for a film to have impact?

(~20:45) Q3: What are better ways to define filmmaker 'success'?

(~38:30) Audience Question: How can we support each other throughout the industry to have open and honest conversations?

(~42:20) Audience Question: Would you share some wisdom that you've gathered from your filmmaking career so far?

(~53:30) Audience Question: As Indigenous filmmaker, how do you hope non-Indigenous audiences to take in your work?