Cariboo-Chilcotin filmmaker Robert Moberg’s latest film Giants Among Us: Rick Hansen and the Great White Sturgeon has been chosen to screen at the Planet in Focus Environmental Film Festival taking place next October in Toronto.
“It is one of the biggest and longest running environmental film festivals in the world,” Moberg said from his home at Chimney Lake. “It has industry conferences, filmmakers can attend panels with broadcasters and distributors, it is billed as Canada’s premiere environmental film event.”
Moberg and his wife Vanessa who assisted in making Giants Among Us, submitted the film for consideration by the organizers of Planet in Focus.
“It is extremely competitive with a minimum of 1,000 entries. They only screen 70 to 100 films,” Moberg said.
Giants Among Us celebrates the Great White Sturgeon, Rick Hansen’s love of nature, Canada’s 150th birthday and Canadians’ reverence for nature.
The film premiered in Williams Lake at Paradise Cinemas in February and in Vancouver in June.
“At the Vancouver showing Rick attended and spoke for 15 minutes. He brought his wife Amanda and his family with him, it was great,” Moberg said. “Now I am waiting to see when it will be screened on CBC television this coming fall.”
Moberg has started working on a new film about the Mount Polley Mine disaster he has titled Turbidity.
“It is not all doom and gloom,” he said of the film’s intent. “Turbidity is not only about the water quality it is also about what happens emotionally to people in these types of disasters.”
So far he has interviewed quite a few people for the film, including former Xat’sull Chief and author Bev Sellars.
“I’ve been doing a lot of filming and drone work although the wildfires really put a dent on that although I am going to incorporated some of the fire story into the film. In a sense a lot of these fires are man’s doing so the Mount Polley disaster is not the only piece of the story.”
On Tuesday morning, Moberg was on a conference call with the National Film Board of Canada about a short film project that will be filmed in the Great Bear Rainforest in October.
“I pitched the story to them a couple of years ago about my own transition from hunter to filmmaker,” Moberg said. “I am no longer comfortable with hunting but I am not willing to join the online toxic world where hunters receive death threats.”
His search to find peace with that scenario led to meeting Mike Willie, owner of Sea Wolf Adventures and member of the Musgamakw Dzawada‘enuxw First Nation at Kingcome Inlet.
“Kingcome Inlet was the basis of the story I heard the owl call my name which was a book my father had that I remember reading,” Moberg said.
Willie talked a grizzly bear trophy hunter out of hunting by telling the hunter what the grizzly bear means to the Musgamakw Dzawada‘enuxw people, Moberg said.
“Mike told me in his culture they have a word — awol — to describe the sense of peace one finds in nature,” Moberg said.
“It means the stillness. It’s probably going to be a beautiful film and I’ll have an NFB crew with me and everything. I am really looking forward to that.”