Wright, WY

Bison documentary features small Wyoming town.

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Wright Wyoming bison ranch, Durham Ranch, will be featured in a new documentary about the Official Mammal of the United States, the American bison.

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Rancher on Durham Ranch rounds up bison on horseback.Photo byMeet My Neighbor Productions, Inc.

Durham Ranch is a 55,000 acre bison ranch located in Wright, Wyoming south of Gillette. The ranch is a multi-generational ranch with several thousand head of bison. Currently operated by John Flocchini the ranch offers public tours and supplies several local restaurants with bison burgers and steaks. One local restaurant, The Open Range Steak House, will also be featured in the documentary.


About the Film:

NATIVE | The Prodigies of an Icon is feature documentary film project about North America’s most iconic mammal, the American Bison (aka Buffalo). The film features ranchers and indigenous producers across North America and Native American Territories.

The documentary aims to highlight the history of Bison and it’s relationship with mankind, the regenerative significance Bison has on our ecology, and the industry that has made it’s comeback both possible and economically sustainable in a modern world.

Together bison ranchers, conservationists, and indigenous people are running one of the largest conservation programs in the world. They have reestablished a species from the brink of extinction while restoring, managing, and protecting grasslands that are essential to our ecosystem all while developing an industry that is contributing to everything from food security to clothing.

The objective of the film project is to create a documentary and social movement that entices viewers to support the bison community through their purchasing and donation decisions and to ultimately help them recognize the role that they can play in repopulating and maintain this incredible keystone species in a modern world.

Connecting the benefits of Bison to the ecology is an essential part of the documentary. To illustrate the Bison’s environmental impact and accessibility across the continent the film will cover ranches and conservation programs throughout the entire North American continent providing viewers with local and regional programs and resources.

"Over the years, documentaries have often fallen victim to special interest narratives. It’s the prerogative of the producers of the documentary to document and share the truth. Our perspectives of this incredible animal and the community behind it have changed dramatically from the day we first stuck the key in the ignition and started filming. The bison is much more impactful than we ever imagined” said co-producer Charlie Rankin.
“As our team has ventured down the road of documenting the bison’s story, we’ve discovered another almost mystic hallmark of this extraordinary species. Beyond it’s naturally regenerative influence on our ecosystem, or its remarkable story of survival against our best efforts to eliminate it. The bison has managed to unite people of varying political, ethnic, and extreme culturally diverse backgrounds into a single cause even during disruptive social, political, and economical times. It started as a story about a mammal and has evolved into a story of healing of our land, people, and nations” Charlie explained.

NATIVE | The Prodigies of an Icon is a documentary completely narrated and funded by the bison community and it’s supporters.

Filming is set to continue through 2023 with post production in 2024. The producers have not yet identified a distribution partner but plan to do so by the end of 2023.

“It’s important to us that we get this story out to as many people as possible. Whether that means a distribution with Netflix, PBS, Fox Nation, or other local networks it yet to be determined” said Charlie Rankin.

Other Wyoming producers in the documentary include the Tribal Buffalo Initiative with Jason Blades on the Wind River Reservation.

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Buffalo satellite bull along the Wind River at the Tribal Buffalo Initiative's Morton Wyoming preserve.Photo byMeet My Neighbor Productions, Inc.

“Jason’s approach to bison conservation is both rewarding and unique, he has been a huge advocate for indigenous herds, and we are excited to include their story in the documentary” said Charlie Rankin.

One things for sure, we’ll finally hear the complete story of the bison’s comeback. To learn more about the documentary visit bison.meetmyneighbor.org.

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