‘Made Possible By…’ #15: Frank Blythe, early leader in Native-focused public TV

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How can public television best amplify the voices of Native American filmmakers and storytellers while also reaching significant audiences? This week’s guest on our podcast Made Possible By… devoted his career to that mission. Frank Blythe was founding director of Vision Maker Media, formerly Native American Public Telecommunications. He’s interviewed here by Vision Maker Assistant Director Rebekka Herrera-Schlichting, and both are joined by Vision Maker’s current leader, Shirley Sneve.


“Content hasn’t evolved a heck of a lot,” Blythe said. “… New young filmmakers want to recreate the same kind of stories, about themselves, about their tribes, about their grandmothers, about … finding their culture, learning their culture, and using film as their vehicle to do it.”

“The challenges, much like the content, are similar,” Herrera-Schlichting adds. “We don’t have a lot of outsiders looking at our films. So how are we educating the public if we can’t get a whole lot of outsiders looking at our films? And so we need to figure out how to change that and how to cater to a public television audience.”

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