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‘A seat at the table’: Native role in HBO miniseries ‘shines a light on proper representation’

Rio Rancho resident Tatanka Means on the set of HBO’s “I Know This Much Is True,” which is streaming on demand. (Courtesy of Tatanka Means)

Growing up, Tatanka Means was always looking for someone who looked like him on TV.

Sure, there were indigenous actors, but those roles were rarely lead roles.

In his time since becoming an actor – standing at more than a decade – Means is drawn to projects that showcase indigenous people in a brighter light.

Enter the HBO miniseries “I Know This Much Is True.”

The Rio Rancho resident snagged a small role as Nabby Drinkwater.

“This was a chance to show a modern Native,” he says. “This man had a seat at the table. Though the role was small, it shines a light on proper representation.”

Means went to Poughkeepsie, New York, in August for one episode.

He then returned a month later to shoot the sixth episode.

The wait for the series’ release in May was long, he says.

“We filmed so much in such a short time,” he says. “Just to see the final product is what every actor dreams of. I was able to learn so much from everyone on set.”

The series stars Mark Ruffalo, Kathryn Hahn, Meslissa Leo, Archie Panjabi, Imogen Poots and Juliette Lewis. It is also directed by Derek Cianfrance, who also co-wrote the series with Anya Epstein and Wally Lamb.

“Derek is rolling when you don’t know it,” Means says. “That’s how he captures such good content.”

To read more about Means and his experience, click here:

Stay-at-home orders are still in effect, but New Mexico is slowly opening up.

This week’s issue includes a short play series Almost Adult Productions is putting on beginning Sunday, June 28 via Zoom. The Santa Fe-based theater company will be featuring three LGBTQ+ short plays. Click here to read the story:

On demand and streaming services continue to produce content for viewing from home. To read a review of Kevin Bacon’s latest thriller, “You Should Have Left,” click here:

For the review of Hulu’s coming-of-age series “Love, Victor,” click here:

Read about how Bosque Brewing is re-releasing its pandemic-inspired Pickle Down Economics here:

Once again, I’d like to thank you for diving inside Venue weekly to see what’s happening around the state.

Adrian Gomez
Venue editor

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