“Reservation Dogs” Makes Hollywood Debut At Red Carpet Premiere
By Indigenous News Online Staff
LOS ANGELES – The New Series Dogs Reservation debuted last night at a red carpet event in trendy NeueHouse in central Hollywood.
The celebration ended with a rooftop screening of the first two episodes, in the presence of the cast and crew. Also in attendance were producers Sterlin Harjo (co-creator / executive producer / writer / director), Taika Waititi (co-creator / executive producer / screenwriter) and Garrett Basch (executive producer).
The bold new comedy series, which features broad Indigenous representation, has already won praise from the New York Times, which called it “an often gritty and often dark look at life on a Native American reservation today.” .
Dogs Reservation officially releases Monday August 9 exclusively on FX on Hulu. The premiere will consist of the first two episodes, followed by new episodes airing each following week.
The red carpet was filled with young Indigenous talent, including series regulars D’Pharaoh Woon-A-Tai, Devery Jacobs, Paulina Alexis and Lane Factor.
Some of the guest star actors have also made appearances on the carpet, including Zahn McClarnon, Lil Mike & Funny Bone, Sten Joddi, Dalton Cramer, Bobby Lee and Kirk Fox. Other writers and directors were also in attendance, including Tazbah Rose Chavez and Sydney Freeland. The evening closed with energetic musical performances by native rappers (and guest stars) Mike Bone and Sten Joddi.
Indigenous News Online was on the mat, asking the cast and crew questions about the show and taking pictures of the cast and crew. All photos were taken by photographer Nicole Rico.
ACTOR AND CREW QUOTES
Devery Jacobs (“Elora Danan”) on what it was like to work with an aboriginal cast
“Working on Reservation Dogs has proven to me that I thrive when I am surrounded by the community and collaborate with the community. I’ve worked on many projects before where I’m the only Indigenous person for miles, let alone the only Indigenous queer for miles. I didn’t realize how isolated and lonely this experience was until I stepped onto the Reservation Dogs set and found myself surrounded by community. It was such a moving and empowering moment. It was unlike anything I had experienced on set. For the first time, we are telling an Indigenous story from our perspective. It really felt like we had created a space that was ours and non-native crew members were welcomed into that space. From start to finish, we all supported each other. ”
Sterlin Harjo (co-creator, executive producer, screenwriter, director, showrunner) in the cast
“We just got lucky and picked the right people in the right roles. They just gelled. It just came together. It’s my job to make them feel comfortable with each other, so there was time to hang out together and just talk, but there was no exercise. They just got along. In the end, it turned out better than I imagined. I knew it was going to be good, but I didn’t know it was going to be this good. Part of that is the support we got from FX, but also just the talent ”.
D’Pharaoh Woon-A-Tai (“Bear Smallhill”) on preparing for his role
“There was nothing surprising. I felt the character was written for me. Really what I did was learn more about the community. I’ve heard of every nation, the 38 nations of Oklahoma. It’s about studying and learning. It was about appreciating the land and the people you speak for.
Lane Factor (“Cheese”) on his acting experience
“This is my very first concert. I’m 16, I was 15 when we shot the show. I will see where I am in a few years, but I intend to continue playing. It was the first project I worked on and it was absolutely brilliant. I learned a lot. First of all, there is a lot of waiting. It was mostly about learning lines and trying not to look into the camera. I don’t know how many times we had to remake a scene because one of us looked at the camera. It was a lot of little things, like learning my internships – hitting your marks. “
Sterlin Harjo on set in Oklahoma
“I still shoot in Oklahoma. I am mythologizing the place a bit. This is where I grew up and there is something magical about it. I always try to create that feeling. Each episode has several stories or characters from my life. There are so many.
Zahn McClarnon (“Big”) on working with a young cast
“It’s amazing. You kind of blossom, that enthusiasm. Being with kids on set for the first time and how excited they were to be the stars of a TV show. inspire them because, after a while, the work can become a bit mundane. “
Tazbah Rose Chavez (producer, screenwriter, director, Ep. 106) on writing about life on the reserves
“There is no story that I know better than this one. I grew up on my father’s premises in California, so a lot of what you’re going to see in this series comes from the childhoods of different writers. This way, it was the easiest thing I had to write. I didn’t have to hire anyone else. With all these characters, we all have this aunt, this cousin, this friend.
Sterlin Harjo on the Reservoir Dogs / Quentin Tarantino connection
“Taika and I were talking about it. I think I remember Taika saying, “We should call her Reservation Dogs”. And I was like, ‘Of course we should!’ Part of the show is that it has a lot of references, and that’s what Quentin Tarantino does. If there’s a similarity to Tarantino’s work, it’s that it references other movies, so we’ve given it a wink.
Paulina Alexis (“Willie Jack”) on her first big break
“Ghostbusters. I played a small part in there, but this is the first big gig where I really got to step into my groove and show what I can do. Show my chops.
Sten Joddi (“Punkin Lusty”) on being a musician / actor
“Music is always where I go. Music and tattoos are what got me out of my tough times. It saved my life. Music is literally tattooed on my face. But this is my very first acting job and to do it at this caliber, at this level, is amazing. It’s crazy. Most people start out as an extra or in the background. It’s zero to one hundred really fast.
Rap duo Mike Bone’s Funny Bone (“Mekko”) & Lil Mike (“Mose”) talk about acting
Funny Bone: “That’s a whole different thing, man. It’s much more exciting.
Lil Mike: “One thing I’ve learned is that when you learn a song, the song stays the same. But when you learn a script and then go to the set, they can change it on you! (Laughs). It puzzles you if you are a rapper. You had a declining pace.
Funny Bone: “We’ve adapted really well, though. The directors really loved the way we flipped it over and put our two cents in it. We came naturally with it, and I think they really dug that into it.
Lil Mike: “But it’s really surreal. There is a lot more media involvement in this area than in the underground rap scene.
Reservation Dogs airs Monday, August 9 via FX on Hulu. Broadcast it here.
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