Peter’s interest in Sasquatch legends and stories began when he was a young boy in the 1960’s, growing up on horse ranch and family run resort in the mountains and river valleys north of Squamish, BC.  From an early age he met the local Coast Salish people- the Squamish whose elders and chiefs shared some of their traditional stories- including that of Sasquatch.   When he became a filmmaker, after attending University, he began working with British Columbia’s native peoples/first nations and was able to film traditional ceremonies- with their amazing variety of spirit creatures seen in masked dances: giant cannibal birds, thunderbirds, killer whales and wild-man-of-the forest (Bokwus) and wild-woman-of-the-forest (Dzonokwa)- hairy giants that lived in the woods.  Producing his film “Spirit of the Mask” in 1990/91 featuring Harvard Ethno-botanist/author Wade Davis (“Serpent and the Rainbow”- origin of Zombies) and BC’s First Nations people- he began to draw a connection with wildmen stories of the world and those creatures featured in native ceremonies.

 

In 1998/99, Sheera and Peter von Puttkamer produced “Sasquatch Odyssey: the Hunt for Bigfoot” (seen on TLC)  now a classic in the Bigfoot world. Featuring the “Four Horsemen of Sasquatchery”:  Rene Dahinden, John Green, Peter Byrne and Dr. Grover Krantz: the key original players in the Sasquatch/Bigfoot research game. The film was selected for the prestigious International Documentary Association DocuFest Film Festival In Los Angeles- it was screened in LA theaters, qualifying it for Academy Award nomination.  It’s considered by many to be the best film produced on the subject.  In 2001, the filmmakers once again pursued a Bigfoot-type creature (Yowie) for their Monster Hunters series (seen on TLC): featuring Dean Harrison and his Australian Yowie Research group.

 

Over the years, the “wildmen” stories, sightings and encounters  around the world have fascinated Peter. From “wildmen” depicted in the coats-of-arms of the royal families of Europe, to Greenman in England, and various hairy giants seen the ceremonies and parades of  the ancient “pagan” peoples of Switzerland, Germany, France, Spain, Hungary, Romania- and that’s just the west.  The Yeti in Tibet/Nepal/Bhutan and the Yiren in China, Wildman in Vietnam- the hairy Wildman stories and sightings are endless around the planet. “Killing Bigfoot” (aka Bigfoot Commandos) is Gryphon Productions’ (Peter & Sheera von Puttkamer) latest film production to examine Sasquatch: the more aggressive Southern Bigfoot and the work of the men of the Gulf Coast Bigfoot Research Organization, who are safe-guarding the public and intend to take one rogue male specimen- to prove to science that it’s real.

 

 

Young Peter, with revered Cultural/spiritual leader Dominic Charlie- (Coast Salish) Squamish Tribe, at Parade, Squamish, B.C..

 2004-  Peter (holding sacred pipe) in Sto:lo Nation with (Coast Salish) Medicine man - Coqualeetza Tribe: this is where the word "SASQUATCH" comes from.

1990-  In my 20's,  two sacred Cannibal Bird masks- belonging to  Chief Tony Hunt (Kwa kwa ka' kwak)- making of "The Spirit of the Mask";in old-growth forest above Vancouver;

 

The original Sasquatch? British Columbia early 1900's. Kwa-kwa ka kwak (Kwakiutl) native/first nations dance regalia.

 

Early battle with Bigfoot...European forests mid 1500's AD. Just legend or depicting a real battle of the day? These forest-dwelling giant hairy wildmen were regularly depicted in European art, poems, coats-of-arms for centuries and appear as giant sasquatch like creatures to this day in local festivals across that continent.

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