Migzi
ABOUT THE WRITER

Born and raised in the icy climes of Minnesota, Migizi's (Ponca/Ojibwe) entrée into the entertainment industry begain after attending the Disney-ABC Summer Film and Television Workshop at the Institute of American Indian Arts. He was selected as a 2005 Disney-ABC Writing Fellow, after which he was staffed on the TV show, "Alias."

Pensoneau
told Indian Country Today correspondent Robert Schmidt that he pitched Lujan an idea about a wanderer, a bar, strippers, bikers and vampires. "He didn't think I could fit that all in," Pensoneau said, "so I said, 'Yeah, I can." The result was "Liminality."
LIMINALITY
(2008, 13 mins.)
Writer/Producer:
Migizi Pensoneau
Director: James Lujan
Supervising Producer:
Stephanie Stonefish Ryan
Mentors:
Keith Gruchala, Paul McAvene, John Taylor, Ian Skorodin
Executive Producers:
Paula Starr and James Lujan
Cast:
Cody Lightning, Pierre Barrera, Mark Reed, Jesse James Youngblood, Brian Wescott, Happy Frejo, Jason Grasl

Onscreen: A vengeful young Indian man seeks to join a vampire slayer cult, and gets far more than he bargained for when he ventures into a seedy bar just outside the reservation.

Offscreen: With the second year films "Ancestor Eyes" and "Two Spirits, One Journey," Creative Spirit proved it was capable of telling stories with emotional resonance, sensitivity and complexity. For year three, Exec Producer James Lujan wanted Creative Spirit to get down and dirty. Said Lujan, "Everything we did in year two, I wanted to do the exact opposite in year three. I wanted to show that Creative Spirit could produce a wide-range of films, spanning a multitude of genres, including grindhouse-type B-movies." As a result, a call was put out for scripts in the "B" movie category, encouraging submissions of horror, science fiction, supernatural, superhero, etc. This seemed to stimulate the creativity of the Native screenwriting community, resulting in the most competitive field of submissions yet.

In year one, Lujan found the directorial reins thrust upon him; in year three, he deliberately set out to direct the eventual script choice, "Liminality." Said the film school-trained Lujan of his decision, "I've always believed talent is like a muscle. You have to exercise it, or it atrophies. I felt it was time to get in my reps." So that he could focus on
LiminalitySet
directing, Lujan recruited a supervising producer to oversee production on both short films. "Stephanie (Stonefish Ryan) had worked with us the first year," said Lujan. "We knew her as a cinematographer, but she also had experience as a producer. For the most part, the process of filmmaking is all about solving problems, and this is an area where Stephanie excelled. She was great at crisis management and knew how to get things done. She set the tone for year three and a lot of her personal imprint is reflected in both films."

Another familiar face that Lujan brought along for the ride was production mentor Keith Gruchala for the third year in a row. "I had actually worked for Keith as his camera assistant many years before," Lujan recalls. "When I first launched Creative Spirit, I knew that the best way to ensure a successful first year was to bring aboard a mentor who believed in the project and would do anything it took to get the job done. That's the kind of guy Keith is. He wasn't a passive mentor, he was out there leading by example, helping out with everything from lighting and sound to even securely mounting the portable stripper pole so that it was safe for our actress. That's why I brought him in, because I felt that he would set a good example for all our trainees of the level of willing-to-pitch-in-where-necessary energy, commitment and professionalism typically needed to make your day on a budget conscious film set."

Film Festivals: 2008 L.A. Skins Fest, 2009 ImagineNATIVE Film Festival, 2009 Pitzer College American Indian Film Festival, 2010 Fargo Film Festival (Honorable Mention), 2010 Sedona Native American Film Festival, 2010 Dreamspeakers Film Festival, 2010 Lake Arrowhead Film Festival, 2010 Indigenous Peoples Film Festival, 2010 Native Punx Short Films, 2010 International Cherokee Film Festival (Best Native Short), 2010 Winnipeg Aboriginal Film Festival, 2010 American Indian Film Festival (Best Live Short Subject Nominee), 2011 Bellevue College American Indian Film Festival
Migzi
ABOUT THE WRITER

Born and raised in the icy climes of Minnesota, Migizi's (Ponca/Ojibwe) entrée into the entertainment industry begain after attending the Disney-ABC Summer Film and Television Workshop at the Institute of American Indian Arts. He was selected as a 2005 Disney-ABC Writing Fellow, after which he was staffed on the TV show, "Alias."

Pensoneau
told Indian Country Today correspondent Robert Schmidt that he pitched Lujan an idea about a wanderer, a bar, strippers, bikers and vampires. "He didn't think I could fit that all in," Pensoneau said, "so I said, 'Yeah, I can." The result was "Liminality."