A few months after a movie allegedly based on the Ramapough Lenape tribe sparked outrage in the Mahwah community, a Sundance series based on the tribe is set to hit televisions throughout the township.
However, reports say this project may be in for a warmer reception from the Ramapough tribe, thanks to collaboration before its release.
Sundance describes its series, The Red Road, as a “dramatic thriller” about, “a local sheriff struggling to keep his family together while simultaneously policing two clashing communities: the small town where he grew up, just outside of New York City, and the neighboring mountains – home of a federally unrecognized Native American tribe.”
According to a NorthJersey.com report, creators of The Red Road consulted with a member of the tribe, Autumn Wind Scott of Toms River, during production. Scott told NorthJersey.com that the series looks at “contemporary native culture,” and even includes a minor storyline about the pollution caused by Ford paint sludge dumping on Ramapough land.
According to the report, previews for the series are being met with mixed reviews from the Ramapough community, with some members saying they found it offensive, and many saying they will wait to se the series until they pass judgment. It is set to premiere on the Sundance Channel on Feb. 27 at 9 p.m.
In December, Ramapough and township officials held a press conference expressing their concern over the film Out of the Furnace, which they said was also based on the tribe, but without any consultation or prior notice. Film reps have said it is not based on any group of people in particular, however a group of tribal members have sued the film’s producers, saying the movie presents them in a false light.