Members of the Warm Springs community had a chance Tuesday to meet Cara Jade Myers, a native actress who is having a breakout performance in “Killers of the Flower Moon.” Madras Cinema 5 held a special screening of the film.
“It’s indigenous representation,” movie fan Tashina Eastman said. “It’s really nice to have her come out here and come meet tribal youth and be someone to admire.”
“Killers of the Flower Moon” is acclaimed Hollywood director Martin Scorsese’s latest epic, portraying the true and tragic story of the mysterious killings of the Osage People in 1920s Oklahoma.
Leonardo DiCaprio and Robert De Niro also star in the film.
“I have such an amazing relationship with the Warm Springs Community Action Team. I was really excited to come up and do this when the movie came out. Do an actual screening, talk to people and get the community here,” Myers said.
Myers plays Anna Brown in the film, an Osage woman who uses alcohol to cope with the loss of her people and culture.
Her role is not only significant in the film, but also one that she holds a personal connection to.
“With Anna, the first thing I did is when I met with Marty, is I said ‘I don’t want her to be just another drunk Indian, because it would be easy to make her that way,’” Myers said. “I come from a family of alcoholics who … I’ve had grandpa pass away and one of my uncles pass away from alcoholism. I didn’t want the alcoholism to be something that was just a personality trait. I wanted it to come from the fact that her family’s dying, her people are dying, her culture’s dying, and that causes so much pain she has to numb that.”
The film is heavy and portrays the horrors indigenous people suffered at the hands of the white man.
“It’s really heartbreaking. And something that I wish was taught in schools,” Eastman said.
“It’s definitely a triggering movie, especially for natives. We’ve all experienced some kind of genocide or a missing or murdered indigenous relative, so there’s a lot of theme in this that I think history has wanted to hide,” Myers said.
LaRonn Katchia is an independent filmmaker based in Warm Springs. After befriending Myers at Cannes film festival in 2017, the two have held several filmmaking workshops for Warm Springs youth.
“I told her ‘I do want to go back to my community and give back and teach them film making.’ I do feel like we’re on this rise of indigenous filmmakers where I feel the younger generation just needs to see they can do it, too. And that’s what Cara’s mission is as well,” Katchia said.
Since her performance, Myers has been listed as a favorite by “Variety” to be nominated for Best Supporting Actress at next year’s Academy Awards.