Ablaze: with Australia’s first Aboriginal filmmaker, Bill Onus

Academic, advocate, singer and filmmaker Tiriki Onus discusses the film made by his grandfather William 'Bill' Onus and the documentary it inspired.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander readers are advised that this story contains video, voices and images of deceased persons.

Finding old family photographs in a suitcase is fairly common – almost infinitely less so that one of those pictures, combined with footage unearthed by a filmmaker, would lead to a feature-length documentary that tells the story of a key figure in Australian history.

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Paul Dalgarno is author of the novels A Country of Eternal Light (2023) and Poly (2020); the memoir And You May Find Yourself (2015); and the creative non-fiction book Prudish Nation (2023). He was formerly Deputy Editor of The Conversation and joined ScreenHub as Managing Editor in 2022. X: @pauldalgarno. Insta: @dalgarnowrites