She’s no stranger to having her films showcased at the likes of the Sundance Film Festival in 2018 and 2022.
Yet, her recent spot called, “In Beauty,” is reaching a national audience as it’s being promoted as part of MTV Entertainment Studios’ “See Me” campaign celebrating Native Peoples’ Heritage Month.
The company is known for turning over its social and linear platforms to a diverse group of creators to provide intimate portrayals of what their heritage means to them.
Tome’s piece debuted on Nov. 1, and is running across all linear/social/digital platforms within MTV Entertainment Group which includes MTV, VH1, Comedy Central, Paramount Network, CMT, Logo, Smithsonian Channel, PopTV and TVLand.
” “In Beauty’ is about thinking to the past, present and how those can inform the future,” Tome says. “The piece emphasizes the meaning of how the world is in balance when you carry yourself in a way that is reminiscent of those behind and before you. While Indigenous people’s are anywhere and everywhere, this film is placed in the Southwest of the United States while creating universality through showcasing different generations, traditions, and practices.”
Tome says the MTV team reached out to her and she was intrigued because they had an open canvas to her idea.
“My work is so broad,” she says. “I wanted to show what it means to be Indigenous today. If I have 60 seconds to say something I wanted to fill it in.”
Tome and crew filmed in Albuquerque and Shiprock.
“It feels very refreshing,” she says of the project. “I haven’t been able to make a lot of my projects here at home. It’s very special to be back home and be creative. Being able to expand people’s perceptions of what it means to be native and teach the history.”
Tome says her cross-cultural experiences allow her to collaborate with other trailblazers in capturing untold stories among the indigenous community, both as a director and cinematographer.
She aims to bring resonating imagery in a blend of convergence with story, illustrating her perspective as a Diné woman.
Chris Williams, Executive Creative Director, MTV Entertainment Studios and Paramount Media Networks, says when he took over the initiative, he wanted to go to filmmakers directly to hear their ideas.
“What I love about (Shaandiin’s) piece is that it’s so beautifully simple,” Williams says. “We are seeing Native families in their truest forms. There are no stereotypes.”
Williams says MTV’s program gives them the flexibility to tell more stories.
“There’s been such a lack of representation and viewers will see themselves in this piece,” he says.
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