Award-winning Cinematographer, Robert Shacklady, Joins Sacajawea, The Windcatcher!

Sacajawea, The Windcatcher, an International feature film production about the life of Sacajawea, is proud to welcome award-winning cinematographer, Mr. Robert Shacklady, as Director of Photography.

Robert is an internationally renowned cinematographer with a long track record of awards for the projects he has worked on around the globe. He is a voting BAFTA member and a member of the GBCT (Guild of British Camera Technicians). His wealth of experience comes from years in the film industry. Over his career, he shot for iconic brands such as BMW, McLaren, Ford, Boohoo, Philips, LG and he has worked with A-list actors such as Tom Hardy, Keanu Reeves, Leonardo DiCaprio and Daniel Craig, at some of the most amazing locations around the world including South Korea, Thailand, South Africa, Morocco, Sweden and Mexico.

Robert shot many feature films in the past, and he is currently cinematographer for several upcoming productions. He also worked on blockbusters such as Casino Royale; The World is Not Enough; The Seeker: The Dark Is Rising; Entrapment; Star Wars: The Phantom Menace, and The Beach. He shot several TV series including, Shadows of Death; award-winning, Serial Killer: Angel of Decay and additional photography for the Period series Sanditon. Robert’s diverse work has also included documentaries such as The Queen and the Coup about Queen Elizabeth II. 

Robert has the unique ability to combine classical filmmaking with cutting edge technologies, technics, and innovations. This creative understanding allows him to achieve a sumptuous cinematic look and style for each film.

“Sacajawea’s story is an epic tale set against the backdrop of amazing natural beauty.  I am really looking forward to cinematically translating her emotional journey for audiences to embrace and enjoy.”

~ Robert Shacklady

The Sacajawea team is extremely fortunate to have attracted Robert Shacklady as cinematographer for the production. With its majestic, cinematic locations, its epic scope, and the deeply personal insight of Sacajawea, Robert will capture her relationship with not only nature and her surroundings but also with the Indigenous vision she sees through her own eyes. 

The entire production team is humbled and grateful to welcome Robert Shacklady to this important film that honors the contributions of all women in history, from around the world.  www.warriorwomanspirit.com

ONWARD!

For more about Robert and his dynamic career, please visit IMDB at:

https://www.imdb.com/name/nm0787117/?ref_=ttfc_fc_cr14

Kaären F. Ochoa to Direct the Epic Film, Sacajawea, The Windcatcher

Sacajawea, The Windcatcher, an International feature film project about the life of Sacajawea, is proud to welcome Kaären F. Ochoa to the production team, as Director.

Kaären is an award-winning filmmaker, with three DGA Award nominations, the New Mexico Women in Film Sage Award for dedication and leadership in the film industry, and induction into the New Mexico Film & Television Hall of Fame this year. Two documentaries she wrote and field directed, as part of the La Raza Series for ABC/McGraw-Hill, were nominated for the Peabody Award.

With over 30 years in the film industry, Kaären has the knowledge and expertise to bring the character of Sacajawea to life – her history, power, perseverance and passion – all seen from Sacajawea’s perspective – on one of the most significant journeys in United States history. 

 “Jane Fitzpatrick has written a compelling and suspenseful script that allows us a window into the life and world of Sacajawea as she might have experienced it. A natural world that was wild and beautiful, capricious and often terrifying. A world that was known by the Native people who lived and died, summered and wintered, hunted and birthed within it, but was ‘unknown’ by late-arriving white men who had not yet travelled and trampled it. In this portrayal, Sacajawea is not defined by Lewis and Clark’s expedition, their expedition is defined by Sacajawea.”

~ Kaären F. Ochoa

A member of the Directors Guild of America (DGA) since 1986, Kaären has worked as Assistant Director on such films as Milagro Beanfield War and A River RunsThrough It, both with Robert Redford directing; Crazy Heart, directed by Scott Cooper, with Jeff Bridges; Appaloosa, directed by Ed Harris; Selena, directed by Gregory Nava with Jennifer Lopez; Georgia O’Keeffe, directed by Bob Balaban, with Joan Allen and Jeremy Irons and most recently, the Disney film Stargirl. Her television work includes the mini-series Return to Lonesome Dove, Crazy Horse and Into the West. She AD’d the pilots for Breaking Bad and In Plain Sight and Season 2 of The Girlfriend Experience. As Unit Production Manager for Proof of Life, directed by Taylor Hackford, with Meg Ryan and Russell Crowe, she spent a year in Ecuador in 2000. In 2011, she was the U.S. Line Producer/UPM on the feature Gambit, starring Colin Firth and Cameron Diaz.

Kaären’s career began in Los Angeles as a writer, co-producer and director on documentaries and children’s films for ABC and PBS. She became a member of the newly formed Women in Film in Los Angeles and later a founder of New Mexico Women in Film, a board member for many years and past president. Since directing three short films, her current writing projects include the rewrite of a feature film in development, which would be her next directing project after Sacajawea, The Windcatcher.

Kaären has enjoyed mentoring other women and men, including many who are now active, long-time filmmakers. She is most proud of her daughter, 1st AD Chemen Ochoa, and her son, David Ochoa, who are both professionals in the film industry.

A mesa top, near Abiquiu, New Mexico, is home to Kaären and her husband, artist Doug Coffin (Potowatomi/Creek), where they enjoy good wine from their cellar and the beautiful views of Georgia O’Keeffe country. The entire Sacajawea production team welcomes Kaären F. Ochoa to the project, as they continue onward to produce this worldwide, epic film.

The Windcatchers!

The World Awaits

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Nineteen months ago, when we shot our teaser reel at Fort Stevens State Park, I walked along the sand excited and thinking about the very next steps for Sacajawea, The Windcatcher. Sacajawea had shown us many wonders that week and I knew in my soul, if we just kept walking we would reach our dream soon!

I remember feeling tearful looking at the landscape because this was her exact view of Cape Disappointment over 200 years ago. And the waves crashing onto the beach were just like they were in 1806, near where she walked. Each of us was moved and touched by her energy that day, and I believe she was moved and touched by ours…

What was she thinking all those years ago? That is a powerful thought, for she had been through so very much! And she had many unknowns ahead, just like us.

When this picture was taken, we never anticipated what we would be facing in 2020. As we look back to 2019, life seemed easier then, we didn’t have the kind of worries and concerns we have today. We hadn’t lost loved ones and friends to an illness that was so unknown.

But one thing is certain for us, just like it was for Sacajawea, we have the power to change the energy, to lift the burdens of others, to embrace the challenges we face in faith. And we know the story about this warrior woman spirit, will be vital to our world once humanity is ready to see and hear it. And, despite how hard it is at the moment, this virus is taking our hearts to a different place. Indeed, a place to receive her message of Oneness, Peace, Love and respect for the Earth.

Sacajawea, The Windcatcher, is COMING SOON! Believe it!

#sacajaweathemovie
#sacajaweathewindcatcher
#warriorwomanspirit
#2020VISION

Let Us Shift toward Greatness

Eyes of Sacajawea redA brief moment of history had a powerful effect on a New Age, as a group of individuals, the Corps of Discovery, successfully accomplished something together despite their differences. They were soldiers and traders with diverse backgrounds, a black slave who was virtually free on the trek, and a brave, strong warrior woman who endured over 4000 miles with a child on her back. We are still moved and affected by the choices they made together.

Sacajawea, despite her disappointment and sorrow, brought meaning to the group. She was purposeful and determined, knowledgeable and respectful. She was unselfish, yet she had a mind-of-her-own and was not afraid to speak it. Sacajawea did not know then, but she was walking toward a new paradigm for the world…

As a kidnapped Shoshone girl, a very young mother, Sacajawea had made enormous adjustments and shifts in her personal life up to this point. But she could not have predicted the future, the disillusionment and abuse of Native Americans. And, as the explorers endured this harrowing journey, they had no idea they were on the brink of wider racism, slavery and isolation of a people. A paradigm shift toward the hardening hearts of Humanity.

As with the Universe and all of life, paradigm shifts are moved by positive and negative energy, good and evil forces, light and dark. Humanity plays a key role in how civilizations live and act with each other through time. It is the power of choice that establishes social changes for generations. These choices manipulate and motivate the decisions that define an Era – and not always for the good.

In our time, we are living through unbelievable sickness and death, insufferable economic hardship and intolerable racism. We can be assured the choices we make now, are a pivotal part of our collective journey, vital for Humanity going forward.

We have a great opportunity and purpose to change the conversations of the past, to shine a light on injustice and racism, to stand as One People for All People. What we do now will absolutely set a new and powerful paradigm shift.

It is our time to choose the way ahead, and part of the way is to tell the story of Sacajawea with her life-changing message of Oneness, Peace and Love for Humanity and the Earth. We are privileged to live at this exciting time – indeed, a time of Awakening. Let us press onward to a vision of Truth on the very path Sacajawea and many others were willing to walk – through the darkness, yet always stepping toward the Light.

ONWARD!

Jane

– Digital Art by Marcia K. Moore, Concept Artist

One Woman’s Life

the river June 2019

What will you do in your life? Will you just exist day to day or will you venture out, being a watcher of your heart? What do know, what is written there that you cannot ignore? And are you willing to go the distance?

Sacajawea, The Windcatcher is a journey of one woman’s life, yet as watchers of Sacajawea’s life, we bring her journey to ourselves.

She walked, she talked, she sang, she prayed on smoke to the Great Father. She knew joy and she knew pain… indeed, she had a dream written on her heart that she could see.

Over the last 31 years, I have visited many places where she had been, and I have felt her spirit with me. From Three Forks, MT, where she was kidnapped, to the Hidatsa village site in North Dakota, where cranes danced above my head, to the Oregon beaches where she saw a great whale and sent her prayers to every shore.

Take the visual journey of the places she has been, and as you see each photo, be a watcher of her dream. This is to be an epic film about a brief moment of time in the life of this soul who lived. Yes, she lived and loved… and had a dream we are making real.

ONWARD!
Jane

CLICK to see the images of her walk:

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Higher Ground

Night great water

Boinair (Sacajawea) faced many hardships in her life. Though we have spoken of them before in this blog, we want to look at her life in a different way. It is 1800, in the early morning hours of a dark, sad day. Boinair has been stolen away from those she loves.

20191029_101115When she awakens, she finds her wrists and ankles are bound, and she is tied to a tree. Young women and children sob and cry around her, they are hungry and hurting both inside and out. Through yesterday’s chaos, Boinair remembers catching sight of her mother and grandmother, and wonders if she will ever see them again… Her world has turned dark, and she can only think of one thing – how to escape!

Thoughts for today…

“If Sacajawea’s life had been easy, we may never have seen her spirit revealed to us in our time. She may never have become the icon she is today, to the children’s children of the world.”

If she had grown up on the prairie and the mountains, married her betrothed, had children and lived happily-ever-after, we most likely would never have heard her name – and her existence would have been lost in time.

Saca chief wonderingIronically, it is the darkness around her that made us aware of her light. She was stolen away – and in that terrible moment, our story began…

 

Sacajawea’s trials and tribulations opened doors that she never imaged existed. She knew her Spirit was unstoppable because she was able to recognize a powerful path through the darkness by Being the light, and that is a divine trait.

She was strong to stand her ground, and even though she was a Native American woman in 1805, with all the injustice and prejudice around her, she refused to succumb to it. Sacajawea was “awake and aware.” Her ego did not guide her, for she knew she had a higher calling, from a higher Being, and there was a higher ground to walk.

It is a choice we make when we see something greater in ourselves and in humanity. Though, like Sacajawea’s life, our world seems chaotic at the moment. But, nothing is more powerful than our own choice to change it.

~ Spirit Wind

Hope, Faith, Belief in the Path…

Sometimes we get discouraged, we look at others who seem to be getting all the breaks of success. But, most people who reach their dreams have faced “the hard” along the way. The explorers of the Lewis and Clark Expedition were no different…

As Sacajawea and the explorers canoed down the Columbia River, they were exhausted and discouraged. But, hope revived when they began to see driftwood float passed their canoes, despite the piercing wind and pounding rain. The choppy current was strong, forcing them to shore…. a shore that had no bank.

Dismal Nitch

The only thing they could do was climb to the top of a huge pile of gnarly driftwood stuck in the bushes. It bobbed and shifted under them. They tied their canoes and baggage around the edge and that was where they ate and slept. Day after day, night after night – cold and wet in that dismal place. That is why Captain Clark named it “Dismal Nitch.”

But, then, the storm passed and they were finally able to move on. Edging the shoreline they worked their way in the rough water to a high cliff jutting out into the river’s mouth. Climbing up loose dirt, brush and rocks, they struggled to reach the top. The salt air and seagulls gave them hope for a view of the Great Water…

Cape Disappointment

 

But, it was not yet to be, for all they could see was a thick wall of fog. Yes, they were disappointed, they had come so far. And, the name of that place mirrored their feelings, “Cape Disappointment.”

Like those hopeful explorers, we are also called to walk a journey with unflinching faith – to believe in things unseen. We’ve been hurt and we’ve had difficult choices to make, sometimes blindly. But those who are “called” to something life-changing, must be willing to go to the edge. It is not for the faint of heart.

Sacajawea has many things to teach us from her incredible, adventurous path.

Caring Heart of a Warrior

Scene Description from Sacajawea, The Windcatcher:
Just as the explorers reach the confluence of the Snake and Columbia Rivers, they are awed by a massive flock of sandhill cranes thundering through the clouds. Captain Clark takes aim from his canoe, shooting a huge crane from the sky. Seaman, Lewis’ black Newfoundland, jumps from the boat to retrieve the bird.

What is she thinking cropWithin moments, screaming and wailing rise from an abandoned village nearby. The men on shore run toward the huts where a group of Snake women and children huddle together – they are terrified that the bird was killed in flight by a loud, unfamiliar blast. They believe the white men will kill them, too.

The captains call Sacajawea to come, and without pause, she enters the hut. She speaks to the women and children with care in her Shoshone language, which is close to the Snake words, and everyone is calmed…

There are so many examples of Sacajawea’s depth-of-character depicted in the screenplay, Sacajawea, The Windcatcher. She never allowed a judgment of color, creed or religion to keep her true heart from being free as she walked the expedition. This scene with the frightened women and children in the abandoned village shows us her true spirit.

sketch WOMEN
Otter Woman and Sacajawea – Concept Artwork by Marcia K. Moore

At this point, the explorers had already encountered many people and dangers along the way. They had seen her caring warrior spirit multiple times and the soldiers had built great respect for Sacajawea. This scene shows how they counted on the peacemaker she embodied. Indeed, she was a bridge for them in their time, and her spiritual story is a bridge for us, in ours. We, as One People, are awakening to hear.

ONWARD!
Spirit Wind

#warriorwomanspirit

Power in Diversity

Scene Description from Sacajawea, The Windcatcher:  As the story of Sacajawea unfolds across this harrowing trek, we get to know the characters. Their spirits and energies move together with surprising unity, despite the circumstances. They are an uncommon and diverse group considering it is 1805, when African Americans and Native Americans are treated as slaves and many of the soldiers are of “mixed blood.” Yet, there is something compelling about this snapshot-in-time and the adventure they find themselves in, together.

Explorers and Native Americans

Instead of focusing on a particular scene, we are embracing the relationship between three unlikely counterparts: Sacajawea, Captain Clark and Clark’s black slave, York. Life’s journey for Sacajawea and York mirror one another as they know what it is like to be abused, sold or traded at a white man’s whim. In their diversity, their relationship is powerful because they have seen much pain, yet they are both compassionate and caring to all, no matter what their race or status.

Sacajawea is a peacemaker and a guide. By finding wild foods and medicinal plants, she cares for them all. Clark is Sacajawea’s protector on several occasions, and York helps her in many ways, especially with her child. York is also Captain Clark’s protector, and Clark trusts him, maybe for the first time in his life, to carry a gun and scout alone to assure the safety of the group. There is great respect between them all and we see it play out even past the end of the journey…

We can learn much from the Corps of Discovery. Certainly, the literal lessons of survival and pursuit, driven by a will to live and the courage to make it over the ominous mountains. But, the character snapshot captured in the Sacajawea film, has so many more implications to who we are as Spiritual Beings.

If this small group of diverse individuals can move beyond their prejudice and ignorance of the time period, even for just a little while, and come together for incredible success, then we absolutely know acceptance of diversity has the power to change the world.

It is our fervent hope that those watching this majestic film one day, will embrace something that goes beyond the literal, something that is not defined by the frail mind of opinion and judgment. But, instead, that we all will recognize the infinite vibration and energy that is already here, waiting for us to AWAKEN, calling for us to come together. Indeed, believing in who we really are and showing us the way – if we will just embrace it and listen.

“An individual has not started living until he can rise above the narrow confines of his individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of all humanity.”—Martin Luther King, Jr.

Transparent Belief

Scene Description from Sacajawea, the Windcatcher: 
It is summer, 1805. Sacajawea and the men are searching for the Shoshone village so they can trade for the horses they need to cross the mountains. Though Sacajawea has been away for four years, she remembers the landscapes, the wild vegetables growing in the meadows, the summer rains. She also remembers the loss of her family, the harsh realities of her life and starvation while her people waited for the buffalo to return. Sacajawea does not forget her teachings and despite the hard memories, she stays true to her belief.

The men pull and push the canoes up the rushing river. And, sometimes they drag the boats, loaded with their baggage, through the rocky dirt because the water is just a trickle. They push on, as they are ordered to do by the captains…

Beaver Head art 2One day, Sacajawea literally jumps for joy when she recognizes Beaver’s Head rock shooting up from the plains. They are near the summer camp of her people! The men see this as, “getting closer to the horses they need.” While Sacajawea sees it in a much deeper way. Through her transparent belief, she claims whatever answers are before her because she knows everything comes from the Great Father…

Sacajawea’s people relied on their Belief to exist. Their circumstance was not always easy. They followed the buffalo for their food, they relied on a shelter of logs and animal skins for their protection, they trusted that the river would keep flowing and the sun would come up and the vegetables would grow in the summer. Sometimes, the things beyond their control caused hunger, sacrifice and loss… They did not always have immediate answers – but their prayers never stopped. They were not distracted by false security like today, for their experiences were on the edge of fear, yet they chose to trust Creator’s brilliant Light.

That is where we must go in our own life. Are we truly happy only when we have enough to eat? Would we share the shirt off our back, even if it meant we would be cold? Would we be willing to go “without” to lift someone else? And, if we have nothing, are we angry, are we fearful, are we driven to take matters into our own hands and hurt someone or ourselves? It is easy to believe when life is easy. But that is not Transparent Belief. The irony of Truth is: When we feel we have nothing, we have an opportunity to remember we actually have everything.

Sacajawea was taught to rely on her instincts and believe her needs would be taken care of because she Loved her Creator — even when all seemed lost. The men of the expedition were from a different world. Sacajawea took the opportunity to show them something else…

Let us pray together in gratitude that Sacajawea’s story will soon be told to a world that needs to hear it. For we know, through transparent belief, the answers we seek are already here!