MEDIA RELEASE 17.10.2019

Skábmagovat Film Festival in 2020: something new, something old and a few surprises

The Indigenous Peoples’ Film Festival Skábmagovat will take place in Inari, Finland, from 23 to 26 January 2020. This winter, the festival will focus on the strengthening of roots and the connection to land. In addition to Sámi cinema, the film programme will spotlight the film production of South America, focusing especially on indigenous films from Peru. The festival will, for example, screen the Aymara-language film Wiñaypacha (Eternity) by Óscar Catacora, a film which has also been Peru’s candidate for the Academy Awards.

“Through this theme, we want to emphasize the special relationship indigenous peoples have with nature. The nations who respect their environment most are often the ones who end up suffering from its destruction, as has happened, for example, in the Amazon rainforest”, says Jorma Lehtola, the Artistic Director of the festival when giving reasons for the festival’s focus in 2020.

In honour of the new decade, the festival will also highlight the art of dancing in addition to the art of cinema, making dancing visible both in films and the rest of the programme. Thus, the festival will again offer the audience special experiences outside the screenings too, for example, in the form of discussions and the festival nights of the Skábma Club.

The organizers of the film festival include both old hands and new faces. Taru Arrela will continue as the producer and Jorma Lehtola as the artistic director. The organization is strengthened by Anni Koivisto, who works as an assistant producer, and Tiina-Maria Aalto, who will start as a festival assistant at the beginning of November. As before, the Skábmagovat Film Festival is arranged by the association Friends of Sámi Art.

“It’s great to be able to work as part of a team which consists of a good mixture of experience and new ideas. I hope that we will be able to build a whole that will serve both new and old visitors. We are also happy to receive any feedback and ideas on how to develop the festival, so that we can offer unforgettable festival moments for many kinds of people,” says Producer Taru Arrela.

There will also be new winds blowing in the near future: before the end of this year, Skábmagovat will have a new website and logo – the winner of a logo contest that will be launched soon.

Further information:

Jorma Lehtola, Artistic Director (film programme)

+358 50 414 4349 /

Taru Arrela, Producer (festival arrangements, special programme)

+358 40 1911 621 /

The Indigenous Peoples’ Film Festival Skábmagovat will take place in Inari, Finland, from 23 to 26 January 2020. The festival is arranged for the 22nd time, which makes it one of the oldest indigenous film festivals in the world. The screenings will be held at the Sámi Museum and Nature Centre Siida, the Cultural Centre Sajos and the Northern Lights Theatre, the special venue of the festival where films will be screened outdoors in a snow theatre. In 2020, the festival focuses on the connection to land, and the programme consists of both Sámi films and especially South American indigenous films. The new decade will be celebrated through the cinema but also through the art of dancing. Further information on the festival is available at