Homer Alaska - Arts

Story last updated at 2:04 PM on Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Homer filmmakers win documentary film award


Photo by Michael Armstrong

Tom Irons and Jean Aspen.

Homer filmmakers Jean Aspen and Tom Irons won Best Documentary at the Sixth Annual Colony Film Festival for their film about living in the remote Arctic, "Arctic Son: Fulfilling the Dream." A film festival held Oct. 14-15 at the historic Colony Theatre in Marietta, Ohio, the festival included 16 films from across the United States. "Arctic Son" also won honorable mention last month at the Fairbanks Film Festival.

Filmed over 14 months in 1992 while Aspen, Irons and their son Luke Irons lived in a cabin on the Chandalar River in the Brooks Range, it took 17 years for Aspen and Irons to finish their film. The daughter of Alaska adventurers and writers Constance and Harmon Helmericks, Aspen also wrote "Arctic Daughter," an account of her own adventure at 22 living on the Chandalar River. "Arctic Son" premiered in April 2010 at the Homer Theatre.

"It's probably never going to be a blockbuster," Aspen said of their film. "We feel that is has lasting worth. It is our contribution. ... Our real excitement is the thought we'll be able to share it with other people."

DVDs of "Arctic Son" are available through Aspen's website at www.jeanaspen.com.