New panel discussion to follow 'Smoke Signals'

Organizers of SUNY Oswego’s Native American Film Series have announced that a panel will hold an informal discussion after the screening of “Smoke Signals” at 3 p.m. Friday, Nov. 12, at the Oswego Cinema in downtown Oswego.

Panelists will include Neelika Jayawardane and Bennet Schaber of SUNY Oswego’s English department and Kevin White of the college’s Office of Learning Services. Richard Horan of the Office of Learning Services will moderate. The public is invited to the screening and to the post-film discussion at the River’s End Bookstore in downtown Oswego.

The previously announced presenter, Native American actor and director Gary Farmer, had to cancel his appearance.

The film series is one of many campus activities tying into this year’s Oswego Reading Initiative campus-wide book selection, Sherman Alexie’s “The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven.” The award-winning book is a collection of short stories about struggling characters growing up on a modern Spokane Indian reservation.

“Smoke Signals,” a film based on a story from Alexie’s book, was the first feature film starring, written, produced and directed by American Indians, It premiered at the 1998 Sundance Film Festival and captured the Audience Award and Filmmakers Trophy. The notable reception led to Miramax picking up the film for wide distribution.

Tickets for the “Smoke Signals” screening cost $5 and can be obtained from the Tyler Hall box office (312-2141) through Nov. 11 and from Oswego Cinema on the day of the show. The panel discussion is free.

The Native American Film Festival is made possible by Artswego and the Sequential Arts Committee.

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(Posted: Nov 03, 2004)