Hollywood newcomer Amber Midthunder stunned at the Los Angeles premiere of Hulu’s “Prey” on Tuesday.
“It’s from the Sky Eagle collection,” she told me of her dress on the arrivals carpet at the Village Regency Theater in Westwood. “Throughout this press tour, it was very important to me to always have an indigenous designer or jewelry or something. So every look I had had something indigenous about it.”
Prey, the fifth film in the Predator series, is set in the Comanche Nation in 1717. Midthunder, an inductee on the Fort Peck Assiniboine and Sioux Indian Reservation, plays Naru, a young warrior who saves her tribe from a Predator (Dane DiLiegro).
Here Midthunder talks more about her fashion choices, working with an all-local cast and what it was like to dub the film into Comanche.
Why was it so important to incorporate indigenous designs into your red carpet looks?
That was never a question for me. Indigenous artists and creators have so much to offer and truly are an untapped resource – be it fashion, filmmaking or business. If you look at our art and our clothing we have things you don’t see often, be it patterns or materials like shell and beadwork or earth tones. Infusing that into urban fashion is really fun.
How was it on the first day on the set when you looked around and realized that all the main actors were natives?
It was very surreal. I get chills just thinking about it. The first day we got there everyone was in their outfits and I looked around and saw teepees and people in their buckskins. It just became so transcendent and somehow very real. At some point in history, things really started to look that way. That’s really how it was with some of my ancestors. To see that and to think about what we have achieved was just amazing.
What was it like dubbing the film into Comanche?
The film was originally intended to be shot entirely in Comanche. When we auditioned we did all our scenes in English and Comanche to make sure we could pull it off and how it played. We ended up shooting the film in English, but Returning to Comanche is very special in terms of language preservation. We too make history. Never before has a film been released in a native dub after initial release. I think it’s a great victory and a great cause to claim as a people. And just so I can get acquainted with the Comanche language – it’s not at all the language I grew up speaking [with] – I felt it was a personal gift to get to know the culture and the language so closely.
“Prey” launches on Hulu on August 5th.
https://variety.com/2022/film/columns/prey-amber-midthunder-comanche-1235333628/ Preys Amber Midthunder on English and Comanche auditions