Private Project

Gas Can

A Cree family in 1970s Saskatchewan must ask an old Farmer for help when their car runs out of gas while moving to the city.

Long synopsis:

Gas Can is a narrative short film (15min) about the cycles of privilege and racism on the prairies. The film follows the story of Anthem, a Cree man moving to the city with his family. Along the way, they run out of gas and Anthem asks an old friend -- the Farmer -- for help. The Farmer agrees, but not unconditionally, and he turns his back on them when they need it most. Anthem and his family are left with no choice but to take back what was promised, and when the Farmer sets off after them in a rage he’s left stuck when his own truck runs out of gas.

  • Mattias Graham
  • Mattias Graham
  • Mariel Scammell
  • Simran Dewan
  • Simon Moccasin
    Key Cast
  • Lyndon Bray
    Key Cast
  • Candy Fox
    Key Cast
  • Trenyce Yuzicappi
    Key Cast
  • Derek Branscombe
  • Jeremy Sandor
    Art Direction
  • Paul Chotel
    Picture Editing
  • Mattias Graham
    Picture Editing
  • David Roman
    Sound Recording & Mixing
  • Matthieu Belanger
    Production Coordinator
    Basic Human Needs
  • Jeanne Dupuis
    Assistant Camera
  • Project Type:
  • Genres:
    Drama, period film
  • Runtime:
    15 minutes
  • Completion Date:
    April 17, 2017
  • Production Budget:
    10,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
  • Country of Filming:
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
  • Yorkton Film Festival
    Yorkton, SK
    May 27, 2017
    World Premiere / Saskatchewan Premiere
    Winner: Best of Saskatchewan (Ruth Shaw Award) Nominations: Best Short Subject (Fiction); Best of Saskatchewan (Ruth Shaw Award); Emerging Filmmaker Award; Craft Awards - Director (Fiction)
  • Asinabka Film & Media Arts Festival
    Ottawa, Ontario
    August 11, 2017
    Ontario Premiere
  • Saskatchewan Independent Film Awards
    Regina, SK
    November 17, 2017
    Regina Premiere
    Winner: Best Short Film + Audience Choice
  • LA Skins
    Los Angeles
    United States
    November 18, 2017
    International Premiere
    Nominated: Best Narrative Short
  • WAFF - Winnipeg Aboriginal Film Festival
    November 24, 2017
    Manitoba Premiere
Director Biography - Mattias Graham

Mattias Graham was born and raised in the flatlands of Regina, Saskatchewan. He left to pursue a Bachelor of Fine Arts (Specialization in Film Production) at the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema at Concordia University, and now calls Montreal his adopted home. He is a board member of the Saskatchewan Filmpool Cooperative, and currently pursues work as a freelance editor in addition to personal film projects.

You can follow him on Vimeo (Corax Incarna), Twitter (@CoraxIncarna)

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Director Statement

Gas Can is a film about a tense interaction between a farmer and indigenous family in 1970s Saskatchewan, Canada. Thematically it addresses the issues of prejudice and privilege through a small event, which plays out in many different forms to this day. The film has ended up in a very different place from where it began, and I hope it can connect with viewers as a prairie story more rooted in an indigenous point of view.