“Longmire” (A&E) can be seen each Monday evening at 10/9 p.m. It is based on the mystery novels written by Craig Johnson set in Absaroka, Wyoming near the Cheyenne Indian Reservation. The filming location of this modern western is in the state of New Mexico. Executive producer, Greer Shepard wanted to get it right on the Native American aspect of storytelling. They hired Marcus Red-Thunder (Ojibwe/Northern Cheyenne tribes) as the main technical advisor.
On the official A&E website of “Longmire.” There is a short documentary called, “The Cheyenne World” where we see Marcus working behind-the-scenes on the third TV season. A native male says, “I feel Marcus is doing an exceptional job because what he sees & what he lives, he portrays it on 'Longmire.' So, you can't get any closer to the real, real deal.” A native elder says, “He represents the Indian in a good way.”
Marcus grew up with the northern Cheyenne Indian people. He says that, “The way that we portray natives in 'Longmire' is very authentic & real. The same as it is on the Rez (reservation).” Greer explains that novelist Craig Johnson based Henry Standing Bear on Marcus Red-Thunder. Henry is played by Lou Diamond Phillips & Greer says that the characters go to Henry for guidance in terms of the Cheyenne traditions.
“Longmire” stars, Robert Taylor (Walt Longmire), Katee Sackhoff (Victoria “Vic” Moretti), Lou Diamond Phillips (Henry Standing Bear), Bailey Chase (Branch Connally), Cassidy Freeman (Cady Longmire) & Adam Bartley (The Ferg).
Lou Diamond Phillips says, “As soon as I knew we was going to do the pilot. It was very, very important, you know, to me, to meet the man who inspired the character of Henry Standing Bear. The Native American community is so unrepresented on television & many times when it is, it's stereotypical. And ah, our producers & writers, they want to get it right. They want to ah, replicate the kind of respect & honor that, you know, Craig Johnson has brought to the characters in his books.”
Marcus says, “I strive to bring current issues to the scenes. And, the more awareness that we can bring to that & the more discussion we can bring to that. The better.”
“The Cheyenne World” interviews Irene Bedard, David Midthunder, Cheyenne tribal members & native women dancers. All of it during the making of the episode called, “Miss Cheyenne.” You can watch the full 5:53 short documentary at the “Longmire” website.