Gordon Tootoosis Author Biography


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Home > Teen Authors > Gordon Tootoosis

Gordon Tootoosis

Photo of Gordon TootoosisGordon Tootoosis (1941–2011) is the voice of Thomas Yellowtail in Native Spirit: The Sun Dance Way. Born on Saskatchewan’s Poundmaker Reserve, Gordon Tootoosis was raised with a strong Cree belief system and knowledge of the Cree language, art, and worldview. At an early age, he became a cowboy and champion Calf and Team Roper. He was also an accomplished native dancer who toured with the Plains Intertribal Dance Troupe in the 60s and 70s across Canada, Europe, and South America. As an adult, Tootoosis became a champion of native rights and even acted as a band chief. He also pursued his talent as an artist—learning painting, sculpture, and drama. In 1972, he got his first big break when he landed the role of Almighty Voice in the movie Alien Thunder which co-starred Donald Sutherland.

A veteran of over 40 films, Tootoosis appeared with such stars as Ben Affleck and Charlize Theron in Reindeer Games (2000) and joined an all-star cast in Legends of the Fall (1994) with such actors as Brad Pitt and Anthony Hopkins. He also acted in Alaska (1996) with Charlton Heston, Lone Star (1996), Pocahontas: The Legend (1995), Black Robe (1996), and Leaving Normal (1992) with Meg Tilly and Christine Lahti. Tootoosis also performed in the television series Due South, Lonesome Dove, and Hawkeye as well as spending five seasons on the hit show North of 60 as a series regular. He was also the winner of the Eagle Spirit award at the American Indian Motion Picture awards in 2001.

Tootoosis lived with his wife of over 40 years, Irene Seseequasis, on the Poundmaker Reserve, where he was buried after his death in 2011. He was a member of the Cree tribe.

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