Inuit, Innu, Québécois work together for first time
By Isabelle Dubois
Set centuries ago in northern Quebec, Maïna traces the love story between and Innu woman, Maïna, and an Inuk man, Natak.
Maïna starts with the aftermath of a bloody confrontation between the clan of Maïna, called the “Nearly Wolves,” and the “Men from the Land of Ice.”
Maïna, the Innu daughter of Grand Chief Mishtenapeu, then finds herself on a mission that will change the course of her life: she wants to keep a deathbed promise made to her friend Mastii, that she will retrieve Nipki, an 11-year-old boy captured by Inuit.
But on her quest, Maïna is taken captive by an Inuk leader called Natak and forced to travel with him back to the “Land of Ice.”
Planning the film’s segments in Longue-Pointe-de-Mingan, on Quebec’s north shore, and in Kuujjuaq, proved to be a cross-cultural experience that everyone involved in the film embraced, says producer Yves Fortin.
“We felt it was important to establish partnerships with both the Innu and Inuit communities to produce this film,” he said.
So the two cultures not only met in the film’s storyline, but they also came together during its making.
Below: "Maïna (Roseanne Supernault) and Nipki (Uapeshkuss Thernish) getting ready to leave Natak's village." (Isabelle Dubois)