Raven Sky Productions brings Indigenous storytelling to the screen

Local artists Daniel Elliott and David Malysheff partner to highlight Indigenous storytelling in Vancouver Island’s latest film production company.
Daniel Elliott of Raven Sky Productions holds eagle feathers against a backdrop of eagles. He is wearing a cedar headband and blanket.
Stz`uminus artist Daniel Elliott has started a new company called Raven Sky Productions. Photo by Daniel Elliott

Local artist duo Daniel R. Elliott from Stuz’uminus First Nation and award-winning camera operator and cinematographer David Malysheff, a settler from Victoria, have launched Raven Sky Productions Ltd., Vancouver Island’s newest film production company. With a mandate to develop Indigenous-led media, film and youth mentorships, the company is set to centre the numerous Indigenous cultures and stories found throughout what’s been briefly known as Canada.

With an initial focus on documentary-style films, Elliott and Malysheff also envision the creation of feature films, television series and online-specific content.

“The company aims to showcase the vast talent within Indigenous communities and foster meaningful connections with audiences worldwide,” Raven Sky Productions announced in a press release, following the company’s launch July 1. 

Elliott and Malysheff draw from seven years of creative collaborations between Elliott’s fine arts skills and Malysheff’s work at Gamut Productions. Malysheff plans to use his 40 years of experience in the television and film industry to help network resources and opportunities. Elliott will bring his 23 years of work as a counsellor to help foster empowered storytelling. 

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This partnership of experiences will be key to reaching their goals, Elliott tells The Discourse via email.

“Even though my business partner had 40 years of film, [myself] being in the trenches as a former commercial fisherman and 24 years in the education and penal system has given me 20/ 20 vision on Indigenous issues at a grassroots level,” says Elliott. “This lens is invaluable in seeing the path forward. A liminal space allowing us to bridge two worlds.”

“Through collaboration and cultural authenticity, the company seeks to create a platform for Indigenous creatives and ensure their stories reach global audiences,” Raven Sky Productions said in a press release. Blending emerging talent with long-standing industry connections, Raven Sky Productions is confident they will be setting new benchmarks for what Indigenous-centred storytelling can create.

Raven Sky Productions will be premiering Winds of Change, A Truth, Art & Reconciliation Documentary featuring Elliott’s Winds of Change exhibit Friday, Sept. 22, 7:30 pm at Vancouver Island University. You can learn more about Winds of Change and follow upcoming projects at Raven Sky Productions.

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