Streel Films is an independent production company based in Toronto, Canada. Founded by Michelle Latimer in 2008, the company is focused on the development and production of innovative, socially conscious, character-driven films.
Streel Films is owned by independent filmmaker, Michelle Latimer. Most recently Michelle was the showrunner, writer and director of the breakout Indigenous resistance series RISE (Viceland), which premiered at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival and went on to screen internationally before being nominated for a Canadian Screen Award. Streel Films also co-produced with Field of Vision, the short film Nuuca. NUUCA, executive produced by Laura Poitras, premiered at the 2017 Toronto International Film Festival and screened in competition at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival. Streel Films has produced work that has screened at film festivals internationally, including Sundance, TIFF, Rotterdam, ImagineNATIVE, Aspen Shorts, Oberhausen and Cannes, and her work has been acquired by National Gallery of Canada.
A Métis/Algonquin filmmaker, actor, and curator, Michelle’s goal is to use film & new media as a tool for social change. She is interested in exploring how sound and image can transform space to create a visceral experience that lends itself to greater cultural awareness and understanding. Her films have been described as “visual poems exploring humanity”, and are often experiments of creative form expressed from a personal point of view. While her work is informed by her own Indigenous heritage, she is most concerned with how global communities express views of individual, collective and other, and how cultural identity is articulated through these evolving perceptions.
In 2009, Michelle opened her production company Streel Films which produced the award-winning documentary, Jackpot. The film premiered at the Hot Docs Film Festival and received two Golden Sheaf Awards for Best POV documentary and Outstanding Emerging Filmmakers. Jackpot was also nominated for the 2011 Donald Britton Gemini Award for Best Social Political Documentary.
In 2011, Michelle Latimer’s animated short film Choke premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and received the Special Jury Honourable Mention in Intl Short Filmmaking before going on to screen internationally. Choke was nominated for a 2012 Genie Award and was named by the Toronto Film Festival among Canada’s Top Ten films of 2011.
Selected films include Choke (Sundance Festival Jury Prize Honourable Mention in International Short Filmmaking, Tiff Canada’s Top Ten, nominated for Canadian Screen Award), The Underground (Tiff, Best Short Film ImagineNATIVE), Nimmikaage (Oberhausen, Pan Am Games, National Gallery of Canada) and the feature doc ALIAS (nominated for a Canadian Screen Award).
She is currently collaborating with Sienna Films to develop a hybrid-genre feature film about Canada’s only female, dangerous offender, and she is working with the National Film Board of Canada and 90th Parallel Pictures to adapt Thomas King’s bestselling book “The Inconvenient Indian” into a theatrical feature documentary. In addition, Michelle has a number of scripted dramatic series adaptions in development with various partners. In 2012 she was named among 15 producers chosen to participate in the Toronto Film Festival’s inaugural STUDIO Producers Program. Previously she participated in the Toronto Film Festival’s Talent Lab where she mentored under filmmakers, Danny Boyle, Don McKellar and Miranda July. Michelle is the recipient of a Yorkton Festival: Golden Sheaf Award for Outstanding Emerging Filmmaker. Michelle was selected by Playback Magazine as one of Canada’s Top Ten Filmmakers to Watch of 2013, and the Canadian Broadcasting Company (CBC) recently named her among the “Great Canadian Filmmakers of the Future”.
As an actor Michelle specializes in contemporary movement and has performed in groundbreaking new works with companies such as: Crow’s Theatre, Theatre Smith-Gilmour & Modern Times. In 2011 she starred in Theatrefront’s theatrical repertory production The Mill that went on to win 4 Dora Awards, including one for Best Independent Production. Most recently Michelle is playing a recurring role on Season 2 of APTN’s critically acclaimed drama Blackstone, and is an industry panelist for CBC’s Short Film Faceoff, a nationally televised series celebrating innovations in short filmmaking.
As a curator, Michelle has previously programmed and curated for the ImagineNATIVE Film & Media Arts Festival, Dawson City International Shorts Festival and the Victoria Film Festival. She currently programs for the Hot Docs International Documentary Film Festival and is a programming advisor for Winnipeg Film Group’s Cinematheque, Regent Park Film Festival and Reel Canada. Her curatorial focus has been on Indigenous New Media & Cinema from a global perspective. She has curated special programs for the Taiwan Indigenous Festival, The Indigenous Film Archive of Nepal and ImagineNATIVE’s Spotlight on South Africa’s First People, the Khoi-San.
She is an alumna of the Toronto Film Festival’s Talent Lab, the inaugural Tiff STUDIO Producers Program and holds a BFA in Theatre Performance and Film Studies from Concordia University, Montreal.