Read about our BIG ANNOUNCEMENT!

Nathaniel Schmidt

Director. Cinematographer. Editor
Minneapolis, MN US
Available for Freelance
Open To Virtual Coffee
Nathaniel is an award winning Australian/American film director with a speciality in Documentary & Narrative forms of storytelling currently based in Minneapolis, MN.


Nathaniel co-directed his first feature documentary, 'THE LAST DAUGHTER,' with Wiradjuri author Brenda Matthews, which won Best Documentary at the 2022 Adelaide Film Festival and is now streaming on Netflix (AUS/NZ). He directed the short documentary 'ICE BALL' (2021) with renowned Polar Explorer Will Steger, which won Best Documentary Short at the Minneapolis St. Paul International Film Festival in 2021 before premiering on Short of the Week and being selected as a Vimeo Staff Pick. He was also a participant in the 2022 DOC NYC x VIDEO CONSORTIUM Storytelling Incubator Program.

Featured Work

The Last Daughter | Official Theatrical Trailer

Brenda’s first memories were of growing up in a loving white foster family, before she was suddenly taken away and returned to her Aboriginal family. Decades later, she feels disconnected from both halves of her life. But the traumas of her past do not lie quietly buried. So, she goes searching for the foster family with whom she had lost all contact. Along the way she uncovers long-buried secrets, government lies, and the possibility for deeper connections to family and culture. The Last Daughter is a documentary about Brenda’s journey to unearth the truth about her past, and to reconcile the two sides of her family.

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Ice Ball

Best known for his legendary polar explorations, Will Steger’s life work grew out of a single log cabin he built after moving to the Minnesotan wilderness at age 25. Reliant on sustainable energy and natural commodities, Steger formed a community and culture based on the principle of mutuality. Central to Steger’s operation is the lost art of cutting ice for refrigeration. This annual harvest formed a tradition spanning fifty years that became known as the “Ice Ball”. While this old world technology inevitably became obsolete, its disappearance parallels a concerning loss of social interdependence in modern society. In a nostalgic celebration of this winter craft, the film is a portrayal of human innovation and interconnection that embodies one man’s attempt to move society forward, without leaving the past behind.

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