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In 2016, the world turned its eyes to the people of Standing Rock as they formed a coalition of unprecedented magnitude to defend their land and water from the threat of the Dakota Access Pipeline.


An inflection point for human rights and environmental justice, the #NoDAPL struggle became a rallying cry for Indigenous people everywhere to take a stand against the myriad injustices committed against them for centuries.

OYATE elevates the voices of Indigenous activists, organizers, and politicians as they offer their perspective on that complicated history, contextualize the #NoDAPL movement, illuminate the interconnectivity between the issues facing Indian Country today, and look towards a more sovereign and sustainable future for their people.

Featuring perspectives from Chase Iron Eyes, Phyllis Young, Secretary Deb Haaland, Tokata Iron Eyes, Stuart James and more.



Director, Producer, Story Producer

Brandon Jackson has traveled the world documenting oppression and human rights violations from refugee camps in Lebanon to the protests in Standing Rock.

He got his start in film serving as a producer on This Is Honduras.  Afterwards, he worked as a story consultant on White Boy, a crime documentary unveiling government coercion to keep a man in jail for life, and as the lead world tour producer on Black & White Stripes: The Juventus Story, a film marking one of the biggest sports comebacks in history.  Brandon was a consultant and assoc. producer on Junebug, which premiered at the American Black Film Festival. 


Director, Producer, Cinematographer, Editor

Emil Benjamin is a writer, director, producer, cinematographer, and editor based out of New York City.  Originally from Cleveland, Ohio, he received his MFA in Film from Columbia University, where he now serves as adjunct faculty.

His short films White People, We Can Do It, and The Breakdown Parables have screened and earned prizes at dozens of festivals around the world and his narrative feature, It Would Have Been Enough, was an official selection of the Cine Qua Non Revision Lab.  Emil is the founder of Irrelevant Media, an international production company that has screened and won awards at Venice, Cannes, Berlin, and more. 


Producer, Executive Producer

Sandra Evers-Manly is a noted corporate executive, community activist, and patron to African American artists who has been making a difference in diverse communities for over 25 years.  Through her nonprofit, the Black Hollywood Education and Resource Center (BHERC), Evers-Manly and her team advocate, educate, research, develop, and preserve the history and future of Blacks in film and television.

Along with her formidable experience producing shorts and features, Evers-Manly established the S.E. Manly Short Film Festival and three annual showcases in LA.  Sandra is a proud member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.


Producer, Story Supervisor

Jennifer Martel is a member of the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe and works as the Sitting Bull College Visitor Center Coordinator on the Standing Rock Reservation.  She was a key organizer during the Standing Rock protests, directing thousands in and out of the reservation and developing protocols for national media outlets.

Jen is a founding member of the Indigenous People's Movement, a worldwide advocacy group for first nation sovereignty and rights.  She was key in developing the Oceti Sakowin Treaty Conference, a revival of a 150 year old tribal leader tradition,  and continues to develop Indigenous-empowering conferences around the world.



Praised for his "ability to effectively infuse classical music with American Indian Nationalism" (WaPo), Jerod Impichchaachaaha' Tate is a citizen of the Chicasaw Nation in Oklahoma and is dedicated to the development of American Indian classical composition.  He composed on Malick's To the Wonder and HBO's Westworld.

His commissioned works have been performed by the National Symphony Orchestra and the San Francisco Symphony and Chorus, among many others.  He is a three-time commission recipient from the American Composers Forum and received an Emmy Award in 2011 for his work on the documentary The Science of Composing.



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