Pathfinder Guidelines

Pathfinder – guidelines for responsible filmmaking with the Sámi people and Culture have been released now and you can download the document on our website.


The Pathfinder guidelines are a joint initiative from International Sámi Film Institute, the Sámi Filmmakers Association, and the Pathfinder filmmakers reference group.

The Pathfinder guidelines are meant to serve multiple purposes. On the one hand, it is meant as a practical guide for filmmakers who want to include Sámi themes, topics, and persons in their movies concerning how to approach this work in a respectful manner. On the other hand, this document also wants to point out what values we Sámi treasure and provide guidance for avoiding misrepresentation and appropriation. The document emphasizes the benefit of sharing and learning from each other in reciprocity and respect for the freedom of art.

We invite you to collaborate

The main messages of Pathfinder are that we welcome all collaborations that are sensitive and responsible and that value true collaborations, where benefits are shared. It is also important for outside filmmakers to be aware of the privilege they hold from the majority of society and that Indigenous filmmakers don´t automatically have the same access to funds as they do.

Avoid enforcing stereotypes

Enforcing stereotypical images of Sámi and other Indigenous peoples is damaging and this causes real harm to our people. There is a long history of outside filmmakers making content about Sámi people and very often it is the single story, the stereotypical images that are reinforced, for example of the Sámi shaman with the drum. Stereotypes are harmful because they justify prejudice and racism against Sámi people.

Learn more about Pathfinder

If you are interested to learn more about Pathfinder guidelines, we encourage you to read the document and try to implement the advice we give, if you are working on a Sámi inspired story. You are always welcome to contact us at the International Sámi Film Institute as we can advise you and we also have a Sámi Film and Culture Advisory Group who can help.