Bennie Klain

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Bennie Klain

Navajo filmmaker Bennie Klain is founding partner of Austin, Texas‐based production company TricksterFilms. Bennie recently directed Weaving Worlds, a feature documentary that sheds light on past and current dilemmas confronting Navajo weavers, their arts and their culture. Weaving Worlds premiered at the 2007 SXSW Film Festival and had its broadcast premiere on American Public Television in 2008 and on APTN in Canada in 2010. Weaving Worlds has won many prestigious awards, including Best Documentary Feature at the Black Hills Film Festival (2010), an Award of Commendation from the American Anthropological Association (2008) and the Deuxieme Prix de Rigoberta Menchu for social justices films at the Montreal First People’s Festival (2007). The film was also a nominee for Best Documentary Feature at the Native American Film Festival in San Francisco (2008) and the imagineNATIVE Film Festival in Toronto (2007). Bennie also co‐produced and directed Share the Wealth, an 8 minute, 35 mm experimental narrative that situates a homeless Native American woman on a busy street corner. Share the Wealth premiered at the 2006 Smithsonian Native Film + Video Festival in New York City and aired on the PBS series The Territory.

Before earning his Bachelor of Science degree in the Radio, Television & Film Department at the University of Texas at Austin, Bennie premiered two films at the Sundance Film Festival. The first was in 2000 as coproducer of the acclaimed documentary The Return of Navajo Boy, and the second was in 2002 as writer/producer/director of the narrative short Yada Yada. From 2002‐2006, Bennie was the Native Programming Liason for the annual Ciné las Américas film festival in Austin. He was a 2004 and 2008 nominee for the prestigious Rockefeller Media Fund Fellowship, a 2008 nominee for the USA Fellowship and he has been a Sundance Institute Fellow for several years.

Job Title: 
Director, Writer, Producer
Tribal Affiliation: 
Navajo

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