Meet the Creators: The Body Remembers When the World Broke Open

Saturday, July 25 | 2:30pm CDT | FREE on GFF Live Stream

Members of The Body Remembers… key creative team discusses their creative process, inclusive leadership, as well as some of their take-aways and intentions for their future work. Followed by a moderated Q&A. Moderated by Dr. Carol Whiteman, WIDC.

Co-presented with WIDC.



ELLE-MÁIJÁ TAILFEATHERS, Co-writer/director/co-lead actress

Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers is a writer, director, producer and actor. She is a member of the Kainai First Nation (Blood Tribe, Blackfoot Confederacy) as well as Sámi from Norway. She was named the 2018 Sundance Film Institute’s Merata Mita Film Fellow and is an alumna of the Berlinale Talent Lab, the International Sámi Film Institute’s Indigenous Film Fellowship, and the Hot Docs Doc Accelerator Lab. She is also a member of the imagineNATIVE Embargo Collective II. Her short documentary Bihttoš was included in the TIFF Top Ten Canadian Shorts and also won the Grand Jury Prize for Best Documentary Short at the Seattle International Film Festival. She co-wrote, co-directed, and acted in the narrative feature The Body Remembers When the World Broke Open with Kathleen Hepburn, which premiered at the Berlinale in 2019 and won the Toronto and Vancouver Film Critic’s Award for Best Canadian Feature. The Body Remembers When the World Broke Open was also nominated for six Canadian Screen Awards, Tailfeathers and Hepburn received the awards for Best Directing and Best Original Screenplay. She is currently directing a feature-length documentary (with the support of the National Film Board of Canada and the Hot Docs Cross Currents Fund) on her community’s brave response to the ongoing opiate-crisis.


KATHLEEN HEPBURN, Co-writer/director

Kathleen Hepburn is a Vancouver born writer and director whose debut feature, Never Steady, Never Still, which Variety Magazine calls a “stoically broken hearted debut,” premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival in 2017 and was awarded Best Canadian Film and Best Director by the Vancouver Film Critics Circle, as well as Special Jury Prize at the Dublin International Film Festival. It went on to be nominated for eight Canadian Screen Academy Awards including Best Picture. Her sophomore feature, The Body Remembers When the World Broke Open (co-written and co-directed by Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers) premiered at Berlinale in 2019, was awarded an honourable mention for Best Canadian Feature at TIFF ’19, the Toronto Film Critics Association Roger’s Best Canadian Feature Prize the Grand Prix at the Festival du Nouveau Cinéma. The film was most recently awarded three Canadian Screen Awards, including Kathleen and Elle-Máijá for Best Direction and Original Screenplay. Kathleen is currently in development on a youth-focused crime drama series with co-creator Elizabeth Cairns and Sphere Media Plus, as well as her next feature project The Narrow Edge with Experimental Forest Films. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing, and a BFA in Film Production from the Universities of Guelph and Simon Fraser respectively and is an alumna of the Women In the Director’s Chair (WIDC) program.


VIOLET NELSON, Co-lead actress

Violet Nelson is a member of the Kwakwaka’wakw First Nation (Kingcome Inlet, Quatsino). Her beautifully deft lead performance as Rosie in the feature film The Body Remembers When the World Broke Open earned her a 2019 Vancouver Film Critics Circle Award nomination for Best Actress in a Canadian Film and a 2020 Canadian Screen Award nomination for Best Lead Actress. The Body Remembers had its world premiere at the 2019 Berlinale International Film Festival and North American premiere at TIFF, has earned ten awards and thirteen nominations, and was acquired for distribution by Ava Duvernay’s Array Releasing. Violet can be seen next in the upcoming short film, Rules for Werewolves and Danis Goulet’s debut feature, Night Raiders.






Lori Lozinski is an award-winning filmmaker based in Vancouver, BC and the President of Violator Films Inc, an independent production company that has been telling maverick stories since 2007. Recent films are the Canada/Norway co-produced feature film The Body Remembers When the World Broke Open (Berlinale 2019 World Premiere, Rogers Award for Best Canadian Film, winners of Achievement in Cinematography, Direction, and Original Screenplay by the Canadian Screen Awards 2020); the short documentary The Pilgrimage she directed and produced for CBC Digital; and the documentary RETAKE for CBC Digital. Past films include Once There Was A Winter (VIFF 2017) and she executive produced Never Steady, Never Still (TlFF 2017 World Premiere). Lori is an alumna of Norman Jewison’s Canadian Film Centre, Trans Atlantic Partners, Women In the Director’s Chair, and the Rotterdam Lab and was nominated for the 2019 CMPA Indie Screen Award.




TYLER HAGAN, producer

Tyler Hagan is a Métis-Canadian filmmaker based in Vancouver, B.C. His producing credits include the feature debut from Kathleen Hepburn, Never Steady, Never Still (2017; Shirley Henderson, Theodore Pellerin), The Body Remembers When the World Broke Open (2019) by Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers and Kathleen Hepburn; and the three short films: No Words Came Down (2011), Jimbo (2013) and Never Steady, Never Still (2015). The Body Remembers When the World Broke Open premiered at the Berlinale 2019 and all his films have played at the Toronto International Film Festival, followed by four selections by TIFF for Canada’s Top Ten. The Body Remembers was picked up for distribution by Ava Duvernay’s ARRAY, who released the film on Netflix and in Theatres in the US. The film received the prestigious Toronto Film Critcs’ Association Best Canadian Film Award, as well as 3 Canadian Screen Awards for Best Direction, Best Original Screenplay and Best Cinematography; and 3 Vancouver Film Critics’ Circle Awards including Best Canadian Film. Never Steady, Never Still was nominated for 8 CSA Awards, again including Best Motion Picture, and won 3 awards from the Vancouver Film Critics’ Circle, including Best Canadian and Best BC Film. His directorial work has shown at Berlinale and includes work with the NFB, CBC, and the Museum of Anthropology in Vancouver. He received his BFA in Film from Simon Fraser University.


NORM LI, cinematographer

Norm Li, csc is a cinematographer whose work has garnered international recognition and has screened at film festivals worldwide such as Berlinale, Sundance, TIFF, Busan, Tribeca, Fantastic Fest, Sitges, Palm Springs, and VIFF. He is a member of the Canadian Society of Cinematographers and predominately shoots feature films, music videos, and commercials. His cinematography for Beyond the Black Rainbow, directed by Panos Cosmato has gained acclaimed cult status since it’s festival and theatrical release. In 2017, he was nominated for Best Cinematography at the Canadian Screen Awards for Kathleen Hepburn’s award-winning feature debut Never Steady, Never Still, which premiered at TIFF in 2017. He was also nominated for Best Cinematography at the 2017 CSC Awards for Hollow in the Land, directed by Scooter Corkle. In 2016, he worked with celebrated musician/artist Flying Lotus on Kuso, which premiered at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival. Norm also won the 2020 Canadian Screen Award for Best Cinematography for the feature The Body Remembers When The World Broke Open co-directed by Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers and Kathleen Hepburn which had its World Premiere at the 2019 Berlinale International Film Festival and North American Premiere at TIFF in 2019. Along with shooting features, he has lensed commercials for high-profile brands such as Prada, Cartier, Reebok, Redbull, Bell Media, Herschel, BMW, Chevy, Skoda, Mazda, GMC, and Toyota.


MODERATOR: DR. CAROL WHITEMAN, co-creator and producer, WIDC

Carol Whiteman’s passion for creating space for authentic creative voice to thrive has been recognized by two Governor General’s award nominations and multiple awards for promoting women’s equality in Canada’s screen industry. As the producer and co-creator of the acclaimed, one-of-a-kind professional development initiative, Women In the Director’s Chair (WIDC), Whiteman has produced over 150 short films since its inception in 1997. Through WIDC’s Feature Film Award she is executive producer on eight features including the multiple award-winning Never Steady, Never Still (dir. Kathleen Hepburn). Facilitating creative collaboration and learning opportunities at WIDC, including follow up mentoring, coaching and consulting for over 250 director alumnae, Carol Whiteman has helped advance the careers, fiction feature films, network television series, and web series, of a generation of female screen writers and directors across Canada and internationally. In 2019, Whiteman completed her Doctors degree in Transformational Change in the faculty of Education at Simon Fraser University in British Columbia. Her thesis contextualizes the appreciative approach used in co-creating and delivering the WIDC for the last twenty years, what has been learned and what might be next.