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Joanelle Romero is an award-winning director and producer of film, television, and new media — being the only North American Native  director, producer, writer, shortlisted for an Academy Award by Documentary Short Branch in 2000 for her award-winning film ‘American Holocaust: When Its All Over I’ll Still be Indian. To date this is the only documentary that addresses the American Indian and the Jewish Holocausts.

June 2016, Joanelle was one of the first Native Filmmakers/Actress invited into The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Science #Class2016. That same month Joanelle was invited to Washington D.C. by President Obama, First Lady Michelle Obama, Vice President Joe Biden and Oprah Winfrey to share her vision and initiatives of her Native Women in FILM, inclusion in bringing national attention to the multi- cultural diversity issues we face as a nation.

Joanelle has worked in directing and producing original content for online streaming television and commercial advertising through her company Red Nation Television Network – Native is Here, since 2006 and others including ITVS.

Joanelle being the first American Indian to receive an Humanitarian Award, the Armin T. Wegner Humanitarian Award given to projects that have “the vision to see the truth and the courage to speak it.” Romero’s expertise and passion in producing and directing media content centers around her love of storytelling and humanity. Joanelle’s commitment in the film industry has been consisted in having established a career of 43+ years and still going strong. In 2007, Joanelle was inducted into the National Women’s Hall of Fame.

Acknowledgements Joanelle Romero was further acknowledged by Ellen Snortland, former President of United Nations Association, Pasadena Chapter in the Pasadena Weekly, 2006: “American Indians have every right to despise white folks and curse us, rather than bless us. And yet, there are leaders like Romero who boggle the typical pedestrian mind. Like Nelson Mandela, she is a prime example of forgiveness in action. Mandela had every right to call for a bloodbath when he was finally released from prison in South Africa. Mandela-like, Romero stands on his mighty global shoulders and calls for oneness, love and what she describes as female energy.” –partial quote.

Joanelle Romero is a Media Proprietor, her companies include Red Nation Television Network (2006 – reaching 10 million viewers in 37 countries-the first online streaming company-before Netflix, Own and other networks), Red Nation International Film Festival – the Authentic Voice of American Indian & Indigenous Cinema, Native Women in FILM and Television, Native Youth Matter – If I Can See It I Can Be It and the longest standing Native Arts & Culture Media Educational nonprofit organization in Los Angeles Red Nation Celebration Institute (1995). Joanelle Romero’s, production company Red Nation Films is an award-winning company in producing American Indian documentaries and independent films.

Joanelle has a long and impressive career as an actor, starring in the first Contemporary American Indian Women’s Story ever producer in 1977 “A Girl Called Hatter Fox”, this film marked the first time a Native actress carried a leading role in a contemporary movie. To starring in 1989 Handmade Films Cult Classic “Pow Wow Highway,” the film that paved the way for contemporary native filmmaking. Sundance award winning feature film. Roger Ebert’s review ‘Thumb’s Up”. her latest film ‘Wild Indian’ release date 2021.

Joanelle has been a SAG-AFTRA member since 1977 and is the longest standing living American Indian member in the union. She sat on the SAG-EEOC committee from 1998 to 2001 and for many years was the only American Indian representing the native voice to the union. At SAG-AFTRA she produced numerous events including the panels “Where Are We (Native Americans) in Film, Television and Radio” (2000) and “Native Women in Film & Television”(2012).

Joanelle has worked such notable directors as: George Schaefer, Oliver Stone, Fred Schepisi, Gregory Hoblit, Charles Band, Mel Damski, Ricky Schroder, Aaron Lipstadt, Lyle Mitchell Corbine Jr. and Rick Schroder.

The Legendary Leonard Cohen discovered singer/songwriter Joanelle Romero. Romero was the first female artist that Mr. Leonard Cohen produced. Leonard Cohen produced her first recordings at A&M Records; Joanelle was the only American Indian recording artist on the world’s famous Sarah McLaughlin “Lilith Fair Tour” with Sara McLaughlin, Sinead O’Connor, the Indigo Girls and Natalie Merchant; first all female tour; before being asked to join the “Lilith Fair” Joanelle launched Native Women in Music concert series.

In 1991, Michael Jackson helped launch Ms. Romero’s production company. Jackson became the leading force in making Romero’s company known to the world. Due to Jackson’s insight, he added her newly founded production company (1991) in his press interviews in Entertainment Weekly.

Joanelle Romero was instrumental in bringing American Indian dancers to Jackson’s music video, “Black or White” this music video. Romero was able to negotiate for the American Indian dancers to be paid over and above any dancers on any music video ever, due to the fact they were traditionally dressed (the wardrobe did not come from western costume). To date, they are the highest paid dancers in the music video industry. Also, this segment was the first clip of American Indian dancers in a music video without being a Native American music group/artist.

Joanelle’s most current performances have include: sang traditional water song at Environmental Media Awards (invited by Ed Begley Jr 2016) in honoring Shailene Woodley along with Frances Fisher and Josh Fox. Invited in 2015 by Holiness Dalai Lama to speak on Native Women & Scared Water and sing at his’s 80th Birthday Celebration in the United States @ The Honda Center.

Joanelle has been invited to sing Traditional Blessing Spiritual songs by such notables as Jane Goodall, Cesar Chavez National Holidays, Gandhi’s Grandson for Peace Day, Earth Day Celebrations and Dignitaries.

Joanelle with her Indian Country Blues band has opened for notable artists as Rick Danko of The Band, Kris Kristofferson, Stevie Wonder, Eric Anderson, John Trudell, Paul Butterfield, Tin Machine, Freddie Fender, Ritchie Havens and Roseanne Cash.

Joanelle’s produced work in social justice forums include: “the American Holocaust Series”, “Native Women in Film & Television Initiative”; “Native Youth Matter – If I Can See It I Can Be It”; “Warriors Against Aids”; “”The Power of Film”; “Native Fashion with Social Action” to name a few.

Joanelle is a citizen of Mescalero-Chiricahua Apache, Dinétah, Paiute and  SpanishSephardic. A relative of Pawnee, Pojoaque, Southern Ute, Lakota and Haudenosaunee. Joanelle’s father was born on the Jicarilla Reservation and her great-grandma from her mother’s side was born on the Mescalero Reservation.  Born 1957 in Albuquerque, New Mexico, the first child of Rita Rogers and father Robert Romero. Joanelle grew up in to the entertainment  industry. At age 3, she acted with her mother and grandma in plays in New Mexico. In the 60’s, Joanelle’s mother was signed to Universal Studios, her mother was in nine Elvis Presley films. At age 9, Joanelle used to go to the set on MGM Lot with her mother and hang out with Elvis and Nancy Sinatra, where she learned her love for filmmaking. As a young girl at age 12, Dennis Hopper became her legal guardian. At age 18, Joanelle was cast in her first leading role “A Girl Called Hatter Fox” and went on to study at Lee Strasberg Actors Studio in Hollywood.

PRODUCER/DIRECTOR/WRITER

DOCUMENTARY FEATURE FILMS 

2020 in POST-PRODUCTION

Policed Since 1492: Incarceration of Native Nations

Indigenous Women RISE

2020 in PRE-PRODUCTION

The Joanelle Romero Story (working-title)

The Man of the People The Legacy of Edward R Roybal

DOC SHORT FILMS 

2020 in POST-PRODUCTION

Native Youth Matter – If I Can See It I Can Be It

Trinity A Story of a Mescalero Girl

TELEVISION SERIES

2020 in SCRIPT / PRE-PRODUCTION

Second Sunrise

Home, Home on the REZ (pilot shot)

Turtle Island (Animated Children’s Series)

Released

FEATURE 

The Adventures Of Thomasina Sawyer (James Franco Film) – Associate Producer

DOCUMENTARIES

American Holocaust: When its ll Over I’ll Still be Indian (Documentary Short) Director / Producer – Short-listed for Academy Award 2000

The Third Verse 500 Years: The Land of the Children (Award-winning Doc Short)

Melvin & John – The First Story on Native Men Living with HIV/AIDS (Award-winning Doc Short) Producer

FILM FESTIVALS

Red Nation International Film Festival – The Authentic Voice of American Indian & Indigenous Cinema (Since 1995 to present) Director / Producer

Red Nation International Film Festival – “On the Road” (Since 2009 to present) Director / Producer

Native Women in Film & Television Film Festival (Since 2003 to present) Director / Producer

TELEVSION SPECIALS

The American Holocaust Series. A Film & Conversation Original Series dedicated to the Native Perspective. A Red Nation TV Special Live Engagement. A provocative look into the history of Native Americans in the United States and the healing power of justice. Broadcast on Red Nation Television Network 2020. Director / Producer

Let’s Hear Your Funny (Comedy Special) A Native Comedy Special filmed at the Famous Laugh Factory during Red Nation International Film Festival. Broadcast on Red Nation Television Network 2016. Director / Producer

Hollywood & Indian Country’s Biggest Night for American Indian & Indigenous Voices™ Cementing American Indian at the forefront of the Entertainment Industry™”

RNCI Red Nation Awards Show (2019) LIVE televised broadcast an American Indian Awards Show highlighting American Indian Filmmakers and actors. Red Nation Television Network reaching 10 million viewers in 37 countries. Director / Producer

RNCI Red Nation Awards Show (2018) LIVE televised broadcast of an American Indian Awards Show highlighting American Indian Filmmakers and actors. Red Nation Television Network reaching 10 million viewers in 37 countries. Director / Producer

RNCI Red Nation Awards Show (2017) LIVE televised broadcast of an American Indian Awards Show highlighting American Indian Filmmakers and actors. Red Nation Television Network reaching 10 million viewers in 37 countries. Director / Producer

RNCI Red Nation Awards Show (2016) LIVE televised broadcast of an American Indian Awards Show highlighting American Indian Filmmakers and actors. Red Nation Television Network reaching 10 million viewers in 37 countries. Director / Producer

RNCI Red Nation Awards Show (2015) LIVE televised broadcast of an American Indian Awards Show highlighting American Indian Filmmakers and actors. Red Nation Television Network reaching 10 million viewers in 37 countries. Director / Producer

RNCI Red Nation Awards Show (2014) LIVE televised broadcast of an American Indian Awards Show highlighting American Indian Filmmakers and actors. Red Nation Television Network reaching 10 million viewers in 37 countries. Director / Producer

RNCI Red Nation Awards Show (2013) televised broadcast of an American Indian Awards Show highlighting American Indian Filmmakers and actors. Comcast reaching 19 million viewers and Red Nation Television Network reaching 10 million viewers in 37 countries. Director / Producer

TELEVISION PILOTS

Home, Home on the REZ – Actor / Director / Producer

CONCERT SERIES

Red Nation Celebration “Concert Series” (Since 1995 to present) Director / Producer

Other Numerous Concerts as a producer since 1978.

MUSIC VIDEOS

Why Can’t You Take Me Like I Am – Recording Artist / Producer

I left My Heart With You – Recording Artist / Producer

Thunder in the River – Recording Artist / Producer

WATCH ON RED NATION TELEVISION NETWORK 

For more info, click here

RELATED STORIES

Deadline Hollywood 2019

Variety 2019

National Hispanic Media Coalition February 20, 2018

https://soundcloud.com/nhmc/hollywood-spotlight-native-women-in-film-television-2202018

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MARCH – Happy International Women’s Day!

https://www.pri.org/stories/2018-03-08/trailblazing-filmmaker-wants-make-sure-native-stories-have-their-place-american

https://globalvoices.org/2018/03/10/a-trailblazing-filmmaker-wants-to-make-sure-native-stories-have-their-place-in-the-us-narrative/

https://it.globalvoices.org/2018/03/una-regista-davanguardia-vuole-far-si-che-le-storie-dei-nativi-abbiano-il-loro-posto-nei-mass-media-statunitensi/#

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APRIL 19th TUNE IN TODAY on OUR CALL | HOST Rose Aguilar 

* Radio: http://kalw.org/post/raising-awareness-about-missing-and-murdered-indigenous-women-us#stream/0

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 USC Story May 10, 2018 

https://bedrosian.usc.edu/lahashtags/i-am-a-powerful-agent-of-change-i-am-deliberate-and-i-am-not-afraid/

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Women Media Center June 13, 2018

http://www.womensmediacenter.com/news-features/media-representation-of-native-women-invisibility-stereotypes-whitewashing

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Santa Fe New Mexican – August 16, 2018

http://www.santafenewmexican.com/opinion/editorials/the-art-activism-and-activity-around-indian-market/article_89aea16c-421b-54f9-b0f9-cc02201c5e5a.html?utm_medium=social&utm_source=email&utm_campaign=user-share

Santa Fe New Mexican – August 14, 2018 

http://www.santafenewmexican.com/news/local_news/native-women-take-stand-against-violence-in-s-f/article_78f47545-66f3-58de-910e-d3a5bc9936b6.html