Oklahoma filmmaker Sterlin Harjo and Mercury Lounge Tulsa partnering for July 4 streaming premiere of short documentary 'Terlton'
TULSA – The Mercury Lounge Tulsa, in conjunction with Oklahoma filmmaker Sterlin Harjo and Firethief Productions, have announced the live-streaming premiere of Harjo's documentary short film “Terlton.”
The announcement coincides with the 35th anniversary of the Terlton accident, which was Thursday, and the Independence Day holiday, which is next weekend.
This short film has only been shown to an audience one previous time, at Tulsa’s Circle Cinema Film Festival in 2018. All donations from the stream will go directly to the Terlton Fourth of July Fund, according to a news release.
A Sundance Film Festival alumnus, Harjo ("Mekko," "This May Be The Last Time") - who, as previously reported, showed his new feature-length documentary "Love and Fury" earlier this month as part of the virtual deadCenter Film Festival - teamed up with celebrated visual artist Jeremy Charles and storytellers from their home state, Oklahoma, to tell the small-town American story.
As previously reported, "Terlton" is a story about the power of community. In the summer of 1985, a small town in Oklahoma suffered an unimaginable tragedy: one-fourth of the community was killed in an explosion at Aerlex Corp, a local fireworks factory. After their incredible loss, the town faced hardships challenging its future. The documentary explores the town's resilience, mingles with unforgettable characters and is an explosive memorial of life and love in the face of adversity.
Donations to benefit the Terlton Fourth of July Fund are accepted at www.paypal.me/
Look for my new interview with Harjo coming soon.
About Sterlin Harjo
Harjo, a member of the Seminole Nation, has Muscogee (Creek) heritage, was raised in Holdenville, and attended the University of Oklahoma, where he studied art and film.
He received a fellowship from the Sundance Institute in 2004. His short film, "Goodnight, Irene," premiered at the 2005 Sundance Film Festival and received a special jury award at the Aspen Shortfest. In 2006, he received a fellowship from the newly formed United States Artists foundation.
Harjo's first feature film, "Four Sheets to the Wind," tells the story of a young Seminole man who travels from his small hometown to Tulsa to visit his sister after the death of their father. The film premiered at the 2007 Sundance Film Festival where it was nominated for the grand jury prize. Harjo was named best director at the 2007 American Indian Film Festival, according to a news release.
Harjo's second feature, "Barking Water," premiered at the 2008 Sundance Film Festival. It portrays a road trip by a dying man and his former lover across Oklahoma to see his daughter and granddaughter in Wewoka, the capital of the Seminole Nation. "Barking Water" was named best drama film at the 2009 American Indian Film Festival.
His first feature documentary, "This May Be the Last Time," is based on the story of Harjo's grandfather, who disappeared in 1962 in the Seminole County town of Sasakwa. It explores the subject of Creek Nation hymns and their connection to Scottish, folk, gospel and rock music. The film premiered at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival.
His third feature film, "Mekko," a thriller set in Tulsa, premiered at the Los Angeles Film Festival in June 2015. "Mekko" paints the portrait of a homeless Native American parolee who seeks to save his chaotic yet beautiful community from the darkness that threatens it.
As previously reported, Harjo's latest film, the feature-length documentary "Love and Fury," follows several Indigenous artists for a year as they navigate their careers in the U.S. and abroad. The film explores the immense complexities each artist faces with their own identity as Native artists, as well as the complications of advancing Native art into a post-colonial world.
Harjo has also directed a number of short-form projects. His 2009 short film "Cepanvkuce Tutcenen (Three Little Boys)" was part of the Embargo Collective project commissioned by the imagineNative Film + Median Arts Festival.
He has directed a series of shorts for This Land Press in Tulsa, where Harjo is the staff video director. He was a member of the 2010 Sundance shorts competition jury. In addition, Harjo is a founding member of a five-member Native American comedy group, The 1491s.
He also is one of the directors of Cherokee Nation’s monthly television news magazine, "Osiyo, Voices of the Cherokee People," which is produced by Fire Thief Productions, a Native American production company which he co-founded with Cherokee photographer, Jeremy Charles. For more information, go to www.sterlinharjo.com.
About Mercury Lounge Tulsa
Mercury Lounge Tulsa is a neighborhood dive bar by day, regional benchmark music venue by night. The venue has resident artists bringing some of Tulsa’s best original music every weeknight. The venue celebrates and supports live music. For more information, go to www.mercuryloungetulsa.com.