Creating systemic change through film television in all media.

Natives in Charge of Their Narrative

Who Tells the Story Matters

Creating Systemic Change through the Arts - Media - Pop Culture

Empowering Native Indigenous Storytellers
Since 1995

Founded by Joanelle Romero

Red Nation Celebration Institute (RNCI)  The Creative Enterprise by Natives delivering to all people the stories that shape our world. RNCI the longest-running, Native Women-Led, Indigenous Media Arts & Cultural non-profit enterprise organization in the history of the entertainment industry and the first Indigenous non-profit funded by the City of Los Angeles. The Authentic Voice for American Indian & Indigenous Nations.

Serving over 575+ Native Nations in the U.S. and collectively on the planet 1200. Based in Los Angeles with office in Santa Fe New Mexico.

RNCI’s mission is to break barriers of racism by creating systemic change through the arts, media and pop culture in order to eliminate Native American stereotypes. Our vision for the future of cinema is one in which Native Indigenous perspectives are authentically pictured, recognized, and valued in a way that promotes strong authentic Native identities, economic outcomes, equity, and wellness for our Indigenous communities.

Los Angeles is home to the largest urban American Indian and Alaska Native population in the country, with over 200 tribes,
including the original peoples of this land: the Tongva, Tataviam, and Chumash.

Red Nation Celebration Institute is the first Native Indigenous non-profit funded by the City of Los Angeles.

Joe Walsh American guitarist, singer, songwriter ‘The Eagles’

with the support from our Allies

RNCI Celebrating 30 Years in 2025

Red Nation Celebration Institute Legacy Project

RNCI Sponsors & Partners Since Inception

Red Nation Television Network

Red Nation Television Network is a pioneer content provider at the forefront of the Entertainment Industry. Native Indigenous Women owned entertainment media company. CEO and founder Joanelle Romero is an Award-Winning Director/Producer/Actor, Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences member and founder/president of Red Nation Celebration Institute. Red Nation Television Network founded in 2006 predating Netflix, Hulu, or any on-line steaming network company. 

Apply for Cultural Grants

Economic Development on Native Land * Submissions Open In 2024

  • Native Women Write
  • Animation
  • Native Indigenous Student Academy for Cinematic Arts
  • RNCI Crew Training

Red Nation International Film Festival

Empowering Native Indigenous Storytellers Since 1995.

Red Nation International Film Festival (RNIFF) is the largest Native Indigenous Film Festival in the world and the first in Los Angeles. A program of Red Nation Celebration Institute (RNCI) the Creative Enterprise by Natives delivering to all people the stories that shape our world.

Serving over 570+ Native Nations while amplifying more than 5000+ Native and Indigenous content creators through its streaming company Red Nation Television Network, supporting 2780+ Native Indigenous filmmakers through its Red Nation International Film Festival, including films directed by women through its Native Women in Film & Television in All Media, since 1995. In the last seven years RNCI has screened 177 films directed by women. 

Los Angeles is home to the largest urban American Indian and Alaska Native population in the country, with over 200 tribes, including the original peoples of this land: the Tongva, Tataviam, and Chumash.

RNCI Red Nation Awards

Since 1995, the RNCI Red Nation Awards has honored outstanding artistic achievements in television, film, comedy, music and the arts. The show is an integral part of RNCI’s mission and is held on the last day closing the Red Nation International Film Festival. RNCI’s mission is to create greater opportunities for American Indian & Indigenous families in the United States. As a national television special with a cause, the RNCI Red Nation Awards demonstrates how inclusion strengthens the entertainment industry and diversity strengthens our country by promoting fair, accurate, and representative portrayals of American Indian & Indigenous image.

Each November, in celebration of American Indian Heritage Month, the entertainment community and film fans around the world turn their attention to RNCI Red Nation Awards. Interest and anticipation builds as we lead up to the RNCI Red Nation Awards LIVE telecast on Red Nation Television Network, when hundreds of movie lovers tune in to watch the glamorous ceremony and learn who will receive the highest honors in native filmmaking.

Native Women In Film & Television

Native Women in Film & Television in All Media #NWIFTV founded in 1995 and started as a Native Women in Music Festival in Santa Fe NM. #NWIFTV went on to having its own program of screenings at the annual Red Nation International Film Festival (RNIFF), films directed by women screen annually in November. In 2003, Native Women in Film & Television needed to become a stand alone Film Festival leading up to The Academy Awards, out of a direct need to keep our image at the forefront of the entertainment industry. NWIFTV is the only film festival dedicated to Native & Indigenous women filmmakers, hence Native Women in Film & Television in All Media Festival was born.

At the height of #MeToo actor/director/founder/humanitarian Joanelle Romero (AMPAS) founder of NWIFTV coined and founded #WhyWeWearRED with a media coalition to address a Global Call to Action initiative that aims to bring awareness to Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women & Girls and the lack of inclusion of Native Women in Film & Television. Every year in March, leading up to the Academy Awards the annual Native Women in FILM Festival takes place along with Conversation Series and Women of Influence.

Native Indigenous Student Academy for Cinematic Arts

The Native Indigenous Student Academy of Cinematic Arts is an international student academy of excellence in film competition, first established in 1995 with the name Native Youth Matter – If I Can See It I Can Be It. Since 1995, Native and Indigenous students have always been included in the submission process for RNCI program ‘Red Nation International Film Festival’ however in 2021, RNCI Board of Directors recognized that the students needed their own stand alone film festival and awards ceremony.

In 2022, RNCI reimagined the contributions that Native and Indigenous Students have brought to the table through their lens hence Native Indigenous Student Academy for Cinematic Arts was born.

Welcome To The World's First Native Indigenous Film Commissions

Economic Development of Native Lands™in partnership with the Entertainment Industry

Red Nation Celebration Institute made history in 2015 at American Film Market. It was the first time that Native Indigenous presence had a main stage at AFM. Establishing ground-breaking initiatives being the first time in the entertainment industry these four initiatives had a global audience.

Native Film Market | RNCI Crew Directory | California Native Indigenous Film Commission | New Mexico Native Indigenous Film Commission


Creating Systemic Change through Film & Television

The program is led by Red Nation Celebration Institute with Global partners, it’s a pathway that focuses on entry-level, below-the-line opportunities for Native and Indigenous talent.

The RNCI Indigenous Film Crew Directory provides qualified Native and Indigenous candidates for behind the camera, below the line positions to help studios and producers who want to have more diverse and inclusive film crews for their productions. A cohesive strategic comprehensive database for the entertainment industry.

We connect underrepresented Native and Indigenous crew members to hiring managers who practice inclusive outreach.

Explore All Year Round Programs

The nonprofit enterprise Red Nation Celebration Institute along with its partners of inclusion, hosts screenings and events year-round throughout the United States, as well as abroad and online, to celebrate Native Indigenous independent storytelling, help artists refine their craft, and reach global audiences.

Founded 1995 by Joanelle Romero is the longest standing Native Women-Led, Indigenous media arts cultural pioneer nonprofit enterprise in the Entertainment Industry.

Podcast Series

Red Nation Celebration Institute Podcast Series is an episodic series with a focus on the Native and Indigenous narrative. Currently, RNCI Podcast Series can now be heard at Red Nation Television Network and Red Nation Film Youtube Channel.

Podcasts consists of live virtual play readings, conversation series with directors, producers, actors.

RNCI Podcasts Series with USC Bedrosian Center (In-person from 2017-2019)

American Indian Heritage Month
In the City of Los Angeles

Collective Sovereignty

Red Nation Celebration Institute created and founded the American Indian Heritage Month in the City/County of Los Angeles in 2005 and officially recognized in 2006 by the State of California and the City of Los Angeles and in the State of New Mexico 2008.

Red Nation Celebration Institute (RNCI) is the first American Indian & Indigenous nonprofit enterprise organization to be funded by The City of Los Angeles Cultural Affairs Department in 2000.

Red Nation Celebration Institute receives the LMGI ‘Trailblazer Award’ 2022
  • Watch LMGI President John Rakich give Land Acknowledgement and Zion White sing an honor song
  • Hear what LMGI VP Alison Taylor and Edward James Olmos have to say about RNCI


Stay up to date on the latest Red Nation Celebration Institute news

‘True Detective’ Star Kali Reis Embraces Her Afro-Indigenous Heritage: “I Have Two Rooms I Can Stand In”

Oscar Week 2024 Parties & Events List: The List

Oscars: Complete Guide to Red Carpet Events, Parties (Updating)

INDIGENOUS A&E: Native women in film, western music, theater songs and Vegas murals


Joanelle Romero founded Spirit World Productions in 1991 and changed the name to Red Nation Films 2001.

Celebrating 29 Years of the Native Narrative through Artist Development


Double the Impact