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Now Is the Time

Christopher Auchter
2019 | 16 min

Selections and Awards

  • Official SelectionSundance Film Festival, Park City, Utah, USA (2020)

  • Official SelectionToronto International Film Festival, Toronto, Canada (2019)

  • Official SelectionVancouver International Film Festival, Vancouver, Canada (2019)

  • Official SelectionSan Francisco American Indian Film Festival, San Francisco, California (2019)

  • Official SelectionimagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival, Toronto, Canada (2019)

  • Official SelectionCamden International Film Festival, Camden, USA (2019)

  • Official SelectionMaoriland Film Festival, Otaki, New Zealand (2020)

  • Official SelectionBig Sky Documentary Film Festival, Missoula, Montana, USA (2020)

  • Official SelectionReel 2 Real International Film Festival for Youth, Vancouver, Canada (2020)

  • Official SelectionAFI DOCS Film Festival, Los Angeles, California, USA (2020)

  • Indigenous Category Golden Sheaf Award Winner Golden Sheaf Award, Yorkton Film Festival, Yorkton, Saskatchewan, Canada (2020)

  • Documentary Arts/Culture Category Golden Sheaf Award WinnerYorkton Film Festival, Yorkton, Saskatchewan, Canada (2020)

  • Best Canadian Short Film Jury PrizeGimli Film Festival, Manitoba, Canada (2020)

  • Official Selection - Short List: ShortsDOC NYC, New York, USA (2020)

  • Prix du meilleur court canadien - prix Radio-Canada Espaces autochtones International First Peoples' Festival, Montreal, Canada (2020)

  • Prix international de la relève Main Film International First Peoples' Festival, Montreal, Canada (2020)

Long Synopsis

Short Synopsis

A Message from Robert Davidson

Director's Statement




Haida director Christopher Auchter’s Now Is the Time takes us through history to revisit the day in August 1969 when three generations of Eagle and Raven clan gathered to raise the first totem pole on Haida Gwaii in over a hundred years.
Massett Village in 1878 with its forest of totem poles facing the sea, the majority of which were razed and destroyed in the ensuing decades.
One of many fallen totem poles on Haida Gwaii, off the northern coast of British Columbia.
Brothers Robert and Reg Davidson, internationally recognized Haida artists, demonstrate raven rattles in Robert’s studio.
Twenty-two-year-old Robert Davidson and his grandfather, Tsinii, discuss the raising of the first totem pole on Haida Gwaii in over a hundred years.
In August 1956, Haida elders gather to celebrate the raising of the first totem pole on Haida Gwaii in over a hundred years. The destruction of the community’s totem poles was part of the systemic obliteration of Haida songs, ceremonies, and culture that had occurred over the previous decades.

Promotional Materials


Christopher Auchter
Writer & Director
Photo : Tracy Auchter

Christopher Auchter

Christopher Auchter grew up roaming the beaches and forests of the Haida Gwaii archipelago off Canada’s West Coast, and his art is rooted in the land and stories of the Haida people. His art practice is fuelled by his close connection to the natural environment, his adventures in forestry and commercial fishing, and the colourful people with whom he has lived and worked. He began using images to capture his feelings and impressions early on in his life, and today his filmmaking serves the same function.

Auchter studied media arts at the Emily Carr University of Art and Design in Vancouver and graduated with honours in computer animation from Sheridan College in Ontario. His goal is to create films that are as engaging and entertaining as the many people and environments that have inspired him, to help facilitate genuine contact between the Haida people and the global community.

Auchter’s directing debut was the multi-award-winning animated short The Mountain of SGaana. His previous projects include Daniel Janke’s How People Got Fire, Electronic Arts’ NHL Games and Nintendo’s Punch Out!, and he is a regular contributor to Loretta Todd’s TV series for children, such as Coyote Science and Tansi! Nehiyawetan. He has illustrated three children’s books, including Jordan Wheeler’s Just a Walk, a comic book by Richard Van Camp called Kiss Me Deadly, and a graphic novel by W.L. Liberman entitled The Ruptured Sky: The War of 1812.

Selwyn Jacob
Photo : NFB

Selwyn Jacob

Selwyn Jacob joined the National Film Board’s BC & Yukon Studio in 1997 and has gone on to produce nearly 50 NFB films. His many credits include Crazywater, directed by Inuvialuit filmmaker Dennis Allen; Hue: A Matter of Colour, directed by Vic Sarin; Mighty Jerome, written and directed by Charles Officer; and the digital interactive app Circa 1948, by Vancouver artist Stan Douglas. Jacob’s most recent feature documentary credits include Mina Shum’s Ninth Floor, about the infamous Sir George Williams Riot of 1969 that was selected to TIFF’s 2015 annual top ten list of best Canadian films, and Baljit Sangra’s Because We Are Girls, exploring the impact of sexual abuse on a conservative Indo-Canadian family living in small-town British Columbia.

Shirley Vercruysse
Executive Producer
Photo : Emily Cooper

Shirley Vercruysse

Shirley Vercruysse is the Executive Producer of the National Film Board of Canada’s BC & Yukon Studio, where she leads the team producing documentary and animation projects. The studio’s latest projects include the feature-length documentaries The Whale and the Raven and Because We Are Girls; the musical documentary The Road Forward; the animated shorts Shop Class and The Zoo; the short documentaries Way of the Hunter and Now Is the Time; and the Webby Award-winning documentary series True North: Inside the Rise of Toronto Basketball.


Teri Snelgrove
Associate Producer
Photo : Emily Cooper

Teri Snelgrove

Teri Snelgrove is the Associate Producer at the National Film Board of Canada’s BC & Yukon Studio, where she’s worked on acclaimed documentaries such as Highway to Heaven (Sandra Ignagni), Because We Are Girls (Baljit Sangra), The Road Forward (Marie Clements), Debris (John Bolton), and Beauty (Christina Willings), as well as the interactive project Bread (Mariette Sluyter). She’s also worked on several animated films, including The Mountain of SGaana (Christopher Auchter), Shop Class (Hart Snider), and The Zoo (Julia Kwan). Teri is a Newfoundlander and a graduate of the film/video program at the Emily Carr Institute (now University).


Robert Davidson
Reg Davidson
Barbara Wilson

And the Voices of
Jane Kristovich
Percy Rodriguez
Joe Weir
Florence Davidson
Victor Adams

Written and Directed by
Christopher Auchter

Selwyn Jacob

Associate Producer
Teri Snelgrove

Line Producer
Jennifer Roworth

Director of Photography
Asia Youngman

Sarah Hedar

Genevieve Vincent

Sound Design & Re-Recording Mixer
Chris McLaren

Additional Camera
Vince Arvidson

Sound Recordist
Ramsay Bourquin

First Assistant Camera
Odessa Shuquaya

Mike Hjorth

Production Coordinator
Kristyn Stilling

Technical Coordinator
Wes Machnikowski

Christopher Auchter

Animation Rigger
Tara Baker

Stop Motion Animation
Alicia Eisen

Stop Motion Animation Consultants
Alicia Eisen
Kaho Yoshida

Lorne Wright



Thank You

Nikita Auchter
Tracy & Tony Auchter
Maddex & Logan Auchter
Kevin Borserio (Skidegate Haida Immersion Program)
Dr. Margaret B. Blackman
Tyson Brown
Delores Churchill
Terri-Lynn Williams-Davidson
Babs Hageman
Lisa Hageman
Imbert Orchard
Tug Phipps
Chris Sheldon
Helen Shuttlewood
Craig Smith
Lisa Telford
Michael Nicoll Yahgulanaas

Thank You
Barbara Wilson

Now is the Time was filmed on location
on the traditional territory of the Semiahmoo, Tsleil-Waututh,
S’ólh Téméxw (Stó:lō),and W̱SÁNEĆ First Nations

NFB Archives
Royal BC Museum and Archives
CBC Archive Sales

Peggy Lee, Violoncello
David Brown, Contrabass
Cameron Wilson, Violin
Genevieve MacKay, Viola

Music Mixer
Lori Castro

Marketing Manager
Kay Rondonneau

Katja De Bock

Studio Administrator
Carla Jones

Executive Producer, BC & Yukon Studio
Shirley Vercruysse

Executive Director, English Program
Michelle van Beusekom

Produced in association with Knowledge Network


©2019 National Film Board of Canada

Press Relations

  • About the NFB

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