Haida Gwaii inspired a season full of film this summer with crews working on local projects, veteran film crews returning to the Islands to present completed works and new filmmakers starting fresh projects. Moosemeat & Marmalade was one of the television crews to be caught on Haida Gwaii filming for its upcoming fifth season on APTN.
The sight of crews bustling around the Xaaydas Giinaa.ah ‘Laana Haida Heritage Centre and Saahlinda Naay Haida Gwaii Museum is nothing new to Islands residents who warmly welcomed co-hosts Art Napoleon, a Cree bush cook, and Dan Hayes, a classically trained British chef. We caught up with them going out aboard the Luu Plex with Haida paddlers and their film crew.
As a producer, Napoleon gets to take a break when on location and thoroughly enjoys being a co-host. “It’s a break for me to put on the host role,” he comments and explains that he’s normally running behind the scenes editing, doing the paperwork for production, finding locations or any of the other big and small tasks that a producer does. He looks at co-hosting like an adventure and it is one of his favorite roles to play.
“I enjoy being out in the bush foraging,” says Napoleon who been a guest to Haida Gwaii before when he came to visit close friends. On this trip, the crew went to Gaw Tlagee for a chill time filming with close friends and family who were keen to share their love of Haida Gwaii surf and turf with Moosemeat & Marmalade viewers. Keeping the local ingredients a secret, Napoleon only shares, “that we always feature the foods of the land that we are visiting.”
Together the co-hosts take turns narrating the show depending on the communities they are visiting and always showcase and celebrate Indigenous and European cuisine. The co-hosts bring APTN viewers humour and the scrumptious foods found across the country and the world.
Halibut fishing on the West Coast was successful for the seasick prone Napoleon who is more of a moose hunter than a coastal fisherman. The crew also managed to get some hunting in and Napoleon was successful in taking out a blacktail deer, the introduced species he notes is not in scarcity here on the Islands.
Soon after he returned to Victoria, Napoleon mentioned how much he missed the quietness of Haida Gwaii. He adds that both he and Hayes share an enjoyment of the wilderness, the quiet, and the slower pace of places like Haida Gwaii. “I’m back planning more episodes and Dan is back in the kitchen,” says Napoleon who is currently filming more episodes of Moosemeat and Marmalade.
The episode featuring Haida Gwaii is expected to air in 2020. Stay tuned for more updates.