Navajo filmmaker to start shooting WWII code talkers movie

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FARMINGTON, N.M. (AP) — It's no secret that the Navajo code talkers played a significant role in the Allied powers' victory in World War II, said Kody Dayish, a Navajo storyteller of Shiprock.

Navajo servicemen's complex native tongue was critical in communicating crucial Allied messages that could not be deciphered by Japanese foes, The Daily Times reported earlier this month.

Their story has been told before in films, but it's never been told from a Navajo point of view, Dayish said

Dayish has wanted to tell his own version of the code talkers' story for some time, but wanted to wait until he felt he had the skills and maturity as a filmmaker to tell it properly.

"We wouldn't want to disrespect the code talkers by making a film that's (unworthy)," he said.

After producing a number of award-winning short films and features, Dayish feels his family's film production company, Kody Dayish Production, is ready to take on the task.

With the help of his brother Kolin and sister Kolette, Dayish plans to make his movie "Unbroken Code" focus on two Navajo youths who leave their home behind to join the Marine Corps. It will explore their conflict over leaving their families behind, the sacrifices they make on behalf of a country that has relegated them to a reservation, and most importantly, the depth of their contribution to the war effort.

The film will be shot entirely on the Navajo Nation and will feature mostly Navajo actors.

The siblings have already completed the script and are looking for actors who are fluent in the Dine language since the most of the dialogue will be presented in that tongue.

With very few surviving code talkers left, Dayish believes it's the perfect time for the project.

"Now is the time to get a little deeper to see where the Navajo code talkers came from," he said.

They plan to begin shooting the film in 2018.


Information from: The Daily Times,

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