James M. Fortier – Producer/Director/DP/Editor
James is an accomplished, award-winning documentary filmmaker with national PBS credits and numerous film festival screenings of his body of work over the past 20 years. His first documentary, Alcatraz Is Not An Island screened at the prestigious Sundance Film Festival in 2001 and aired nationally on PBS and APTN in Canada.
Since 1995, James’ documentaries have focused primarily on Native American and environmental issues. He has won numerous awards, including 3 Emmy Awards and the DuPont Columbia Award For Broadcast Journalism as episode Producer and Director for Bad Sugar, part of the national PBS health series Unnatural Causes: Is Society Making Us Sick? James’ latest documentary, Gifts From the Elders recently screened at several film festivals, including the American Indian Film Festival in San Francisco, and aired on PBS in 2014.
Other documentary works include the six hour PBS Ojibwe series Waasa Inaabidaa: We Look In All Directions, Voices for the Land, Indian Country Diaries: Spiral of Fire, Playing Pastime: American Indians, Softball, and Survival, Green Green Water, and two documentaries for the Muckleshoot Indian Tribe, Pulling Together, and Gathering Together.
In 2007 James was the Artist in Residence at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign where he conducted a four week video production lab for the American Indian Studies Department course, American Indian Stereotypes in Film, and presented several of his documentaries for students and faculty.
James is an enrolled member of the Biigtigong Nishnaabeg First Nation (formerly called The Ojibways of Pic River First Nation), located in Ontario, Canada. Born in Nipigon, Ontario, Canada and raised near Chicago, James moved to the San Francisco area to complete his college education in 1983.