Condensed by Native Village
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Navajo people believe there are many worlds in which the Navajo people emerged. Based on Navajo tradition and origin stories, we are currently living in the Fifth World.
Nanobah Becker is a Navajo film director who used this origin story for her science fiction film, "The 6th World." The film is about a Navajo Astronaut named Tazbah Redhouse who travels to Mars to build a new community.
"Future in the Navajo way would be the next world," Becker said. "The end of a cycle and the start of a new one."
"The 6th World" was sponsored by Future States, an organization that explores America's future based on the reality of
conditions. They do this by compiling a series of independent short films.
The premise of The 6th World is corn, an important resource to all Native Americans. Becker's research shows that the use of corn in the 5th world is very different from older traditional days. While companies now make money off of mega farming and corn syrup, Becker's film returns corn to the light of a life-sustaining vegetable, one many Native tribes use to survive.
Recreating The 6th World atmosphere and environment was a new challenge. Nanobah was able to do some filming at Monument Valley but had to design both the space ship and costumes.
The film's cast includes Navajo actors Roger Willie as General Bahe, and Jenada Benally as Tazbah Redhouse. Willie is best known for his role in Windtalkers as Private Charlie Whitehorse.
The opportunity to produce Native content in Hollywood isn't always easy. Becker's ultimate goal with the film is to start dialogue.
"We need to make more stories," she said.