Aleut Story

News and Reviews

Aleut Story will soon be available from Amazon Video On Demand and Snagfilms. Once the film becomes available, you will be able to rent, purchase or download it from your computer or other digital device. A DVD of  Aleut Story may also be purchased directly from VisionMaker Films, a service of Native American Public Telecommunications (NAPT).

Aleut Story continues its successful television run. Under a new agreement between Native American Public Television (NAPT) and the Aleutian Pribilof Heritage Group, American Public Television (APT) will continue to distribute the film to public television stations through October 2015 by APT. Aleut Story debuted on public television in  November 2005.

The Center for Religious Studies at the University of Central Missouri this spring featured Aleut Story as part its curriculum.  Marla J. Selvidge, Professor and Director of the Center, developed the course using materials and videos produced by and about people from Alaska. Selvidge described the film as “a stunning and courageous film.”

“After viewing the film, I was struck by the kindness and lack of animosity of the Aleuts, even today.  It seemed to be the wrong reaction.  I don’t think my anger would  have subsided,” Selvidge said.  “You can visually see how loving and caring the Aleuts were to each other and outsiders.  Their experiences must have been horrendous , yet, they have forgiven the military.” Professor Selvidge can be reached at

Aleut Story at renowned Egyptian Theatre, L.A.
Aleut Story has been selected for The 3rd Annual Artivist Film Festival, where it will be shown at the landmark Egyptian Theatre in the heart of Hollywood, Calif.

The festival, to be held November 9 – 12, is a prestigious international event dedicated to raising awareness of human rights, children’s advocacy, animal rights and environmental preservation.

Two time OSCAR nominee Joaquin Phoenix, and actress Daryl Hannah, will be honored at this year’s Artivist Film Festival & Awards.

Encore Presentation for September Pledge Drive.
KAKM 7, public television for Alaska, will be presenting a special broadcast of Aleut Story during its September Pledge Drive. The documentary film is scheduled to air on Wed., Sept. 6, beginning at 7 p.m. Copies of the program will be offered as pledge premiums.

Diversity Week Features Aleut Internment Story.
Aleut Story will be a featured presentation at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Seattle, during Diversity Week, Sept. 18-22. Attendees will view the film and have an opportunity to talk with director/producer/writer Marla Williams and Aleut culturalist Aquilina Lestenkof, who appears in the film.

Recent News Stories

Aleut Story was featured at the 5th Annual Palm Springs Native American Film Festival and Cultural Weekend, March 14-19. The film festival was presented by the Aqua Caliente Cultural Museum in partnership with the Camelot Theatres.

The Agua Caliente Cultural Museum inspires people to learn about the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians and other Native cultures. We keep the spirit alive through exhibitions, collections, research, and educational programs.

Documentary, feature and short film screenings delighted and educated audiences from throughout Southern California. Special opening and closing night receptions offered a chance to rub elbows with the stars, filmmakers, and other celebrities.

For more information visit “”.
A related article can be viewed at The Desert Sun.

Aleuts tell their stories of internment, and a Seattle filmmaker listens By Marla Williams – Special to The Seattle Times

ST. GEORGE, Alaska — I’m in the belfry of St. George the Great Martyr Russian Orthodox Church, trying not to throw up. I’m terrified of heights, but unfortunately in my line of work, that’s not an excuse for avoiding high places — not if you need the shot. …

To read the entire article, please visit The Seattle Times.

The other Aleutian campaign Aleut Story chronicles a dark and overlooked chapter of Alaska history
-By Lynne Snifka

Mary Bourdukofsky packed a small bag and gathered her sons, Benjamin, 2, and Jason, three months. It was June 1941, and St. Paul, in the Pribilof Islands, was experiencing a stretch of good weather. Bourdukofsky boarded an aging Army transport, the Delarof, with no idea where she was headed. “Nobody seemed to know what was going on,” Bourdukofsky, now 83, said in a phone interview this week. “We knew the war was going on and that was it.” …

To read the entire story, see the Anchorage Press cover story.

Film has Aleuts talking through the pain
By DEBRA McKINNEY, Anchorage Daily News
Published: November 13, 2005.

Flore Lekanof was a teenager in June 1942 when the Japanese attacked Dutch Harbor to try to divert American forces from the naval battle at Midway. He’d just come from church when the news started to spread throughout his village of St. George. Then came chaos and confusion. …

For further reading, visit The Anchorage Daily News.

Press Releases

From isolated WWII internment camps to Capitol Hill, Aleut Story presents little-known story of Aleut Americans. Martin Sheen narrates documentary by Seattle filmmaker Marla Williams.  In February 1942, President Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066, which sent nearly 120,000 Japanese Americans to internment camps. …

For further reading, download this press release in .doc format.

Aleut Story nominated for Best Documentary Feature at American Indian Film Festival. Aleut Story, a new film from Anchorage-based SprocketHeads, LLC, has been nominated for
Best Documentary Feature at the 30th annual American Indian Film Festival. The film, commissioned by the
Aleutian Pribilof Heritage Group, Inc., will be screened Monday, Nov. 7th at the Galaxy Theatre in San Francisco. …

For more information, download the Aleut Story general press release in .pdf format (424K). Note: requires Adobe® Acrobat Reader™ or a PDF capable browser.