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We Can’t Make the Same Mistake Twice

Alanis Obomsawin
2016 | 160 min

Prizes and awards

  • Official SelectionVancouver International Film Festival 2016

  • Official SelectionCalgary International Film Festival 2016

  • Official SelectionToronto International Film Festival 2016

  • Official SelectionimagineNATIVE Film & Media Arts Festival 2016

  • Official SelectionRIDM 2016

  • Official SelectionAtlantic Film Festival 2016

The Film

Long Synopsis


Promotional Materials


Alanis Obomsawin
Director | Writer | Producer

Photo : Julie Artacho

Annette Clarke
Executive Producer

Photo : Dave Howells


Dr. Cindy Blackstock

Dr. Cindy Blackstock

National Chief Shawn A-In-Chut Atleo

Honourable Madam Justice MacTavish

Jonathan D.N. Tarlton

David Nahwegahbow

Deputy Grand Chief Denise Stonefish

Derald Dubois

Jeremy Beadle and Maurina Beadle

Dr. Robert Joseph, hereditary Chief

Philippe Dufresne

Daniel Poulin

Dr. Robert Joseph, hereditary Chief


Director / Writer
Alanis Obomsawin

René Sioui Labelle
Philippe Amiguet
German Gutierrez
Maarten Kroonenburg

Location Sound
Glenn Hodgins
Thierry Morlaas-Lurbe
Marco Fania
Yann Cleary
Kim Nguyen

Original Music
Michel Dubeau
Lauren Bélec

Michel Dubeau – Flutes, Dudük
Lauren Bélec – Guitars
Normand Guilbeault – Double Bass

Additional Music
Dominique Tremblay – Violin-Alto

Alanis Obomsawin

Music & Voice Recording
Geoffrey Mitchell
Luc Leger

Sound Editor
Don Ayer

Lise Wedlock

Alanis Obomsawin
Katherine Kasirer

Rights Clearance
Elizabeth Klinck

Denis Pilon

Graphic Design & Titles
Mélanie Bouchard
Jacques-Bertrand Simard

Digital Editing Technicians
Pierre Dupont
Isabelle Painchaud
Patrick Trahan

Elise Simard
Brigitte Archambault

Technical Coordinators
Jean-François Laprise
Daniel Lord

Marketing Manager
François Jacques

Marketing Coordinator
Jolène Lessard

Patricia Dillon-Moore

Legal Counsel
Dominique Aubry

Production Coordinator
Christine Williams

Senior Production Coordinators
Camila Blos
Isabelle Limoges

Program Administrator
Leslie Anne Poyntz

The Presbyterian Church in Canada Archives

Archives Deschâtelets

APTN Aboriginal’s People Television Network

Winnipeg Free Press

CBC Archive Sales/Archives Radio-Canada

Phyllis Grant – “Hand in Hand” Artwork

First Nations Child and Family Caring Society of Canada – Wen:De Report

House of Commons Footage

National Anthropological Archives, Smithsonian Institution – “Kwakwaka’wakw Potlatch at Txaxis (Fort Rupert), 1894 – photo by O.C.Hastings

Gilford Bighouse – photo by Ruth Lyall

Courtesy of the Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture

“IN THE LAND OF HEAD HUNTERS”, Courtesy of Milestone Film and Video

Royal BC Museum and Archives

Prints & Photographs Division, Library of Congress

Gwa’wina Dancers, Courtesy of U’Mista Cultural Center

Oliver P. Anderson, Kwakiutl Woman Named Cla-lish, Fort Rupert, British Columbia, 1899
Portland Art Museum. Gift of Peter and Mary Kirschner

The General Synod Archives, Anglican Church of Canada

Provincial Archives of Saskatchewan

Glenbow Archives

United Church Archives, Toronto.

Yukon Archives, Anglican Church, Diocese of Yukon Fonds

Library and Archives Canada

Ontario Archives

Peter Henderson Bryce, Secretary Provincial Board of Health for Ontario

“Schools Aid White Plague” – Material republished with the express permission of: Ottawa Evening Citizen, a division of Postmedia Network Inc

National Film Board of Canada Stockshots
“A National Crime” Book by Dr. John Milloy
Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada
New Brunswick Child and Youth Advocate

Special Thanks to:
Canadian Human Rights Tribunal
Federal Court of Appeal
Jordan River Anderson’s Family
Frankie Dubois Family
Dr. Robert Joseph, Hereditary Chief
Gwawaenuk First Nation

Alanis Obomsawin

Executive Producer
Annette Clarke



Media Relations

  • About the NFB

    Founded in 1939, the National Film Board of Canada (NFB) is a one-of-a-kind producer, co-producer and distributor of distinctive, engaging, relevant and innovative documentary and animated films. As a talent incubator, it is one of the world’s leading creative centres. The NFB has enabled Canadians to tell and hear each other’s stories for over eight decades, and its films are a reliable and accessible educational resource. The NFB is also recognized around the world for its expertise in preservation and conservation, and for its rich and vibrant collection of works, which form a pillar of Canada’s cultural heritage. To date, the NFB has produced more than 14,000 works, 6,500 of which can be streamed free of charge at nfb.ca. The NFB and its productions and co-productions have earned over 7,000 awards, including 11 Oscars and an Honorary Academy Award for overall excellence in cinema.