Indigenous filmmaker Sonya Ballantyne is creating superpowered female First Nations heroes for her short films, with the Man of Steel serving as a major inspiration for the character of Maggie, also known as Thunderbird, in her film Crash Site.
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“I created a character that I based around the question, what would Superman be like if he was a Cree girl?” Ballantyne told the CBC about the project.
Ballantyne also commented on the owness behind creating the project. “I was getting so annoyed with how Native women were always portrayed on TV, if you’d see them on the news it was always sad stuff,” she said. “Well [I was] like, I’m going to give them all superpowers because that’s how I see them, like that’s how I see my mom, my sister, my grandmother.”
Speaking about the reaction to her film, Ballantyne said, “Seeing little Native girls and little Native boys coming up to me and saying, ‘Are you going to make it longer? Are you going to make it a bigger movie?’ It was really cool to me to see that there are Native nerds. I’m still overwhelmed by the idea that I’m not the only one. It’s now cool to be a Native nerd.”
A short clip from the movie is available on Vimeo.
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According to the film’s synopsis on IMDB, “Crash Site tells the story of a displaced young girl, her overwhelmed older sister, and a superhero that brings them together.” The movie debuted in 2015 and played at the 2015 Winnipeg Aboriginal Film Festival. She has a forthcoming film called Eagle Girl.