Latinos In The Industry

Prizes Won At NALIP 2010: Navigating in a Sea of Change!

For the fifth year, NALIP held a prize-filled Loteria. The first place winner, Eduardo Letamendi, is a 2009 LPA Fellow from Illinois who brought his project to the 2010 Latino Media Market for meetings with partners and funders. He takes home $1,000 in cash to help push that film towards production. The second prize winner, Peele Wimberzuey, was part of the amazing conference audiovisual team supplied by ATS; he took home a cool iPod Nano donated by the Showbiz Store and Cafe. Ben Lopez, NALIP chapter leader for Tucson and dedicated scholarship coordinator, won a copy of production software from Gorilla Software.

There were even more prize winners, thanks to our generous donors and sponsors:

1st Place, All the Money $1000 - Eduardo Letamendi

2nd Place, iPod Nano - Peele Wimberzuey
Final Draft Software - Sarah Vaill
Final Draft Software - Adrian Chavez
Story O Software - Baldemar Rodriguez
Story O Software - Ruben Jauregui
Gorilla Software Professional Edition - Ben Lopez
Gorilla Software Professional Edition - Roman Sierra
(Book) The Directors: Take Two - Michael Torres
(Book) Writing Short Films, 2nd Edition - Germaine Franco
Pair of tickets to the Newport Beach Film Festival (3 sets) - Amanda Hernandez, Jovanny Venegas, Yolanda Mendiveles

Congratulations to all Loteria winners! Take a chance next year - you could be one of our next!

International Documentary Association Covers NALIP 2010

By Rossy Eguigure for IDA

Latin people...we are very expressive, we like to talk about our work with much energy. We enjoy hearing about our achievements or our struggles. In the entertainment media, it is relatively difficult for everyone-hence, the name of this year's National Association of Latino Independent Producers (NALIP) conference: "Navigating in a Sea of Change," which fits perfectly with what took place during the weekend of April 9 through 11.

NALIP was launched in 1999 to help improve Latino representation across all entertainment fields. This year's goal was to keep encouraging Latino creators during difficult times. More than 550 registrants came, not only from the US, but from Canada, the Netherlands, Dominican Republic and other countries.

Registration began on Friday, and morning sessions included a glimpse of what would happen next, with sessions for producers and writers. By noon, delegates had a formal welcoming by CNN journalist Soledad O'Brien, writer/producer Roberto Orci and NALIP conference co-chairs Alexis Garcia and Peter Murrieta. After lunch, there was an opening plenary entitled "What Works Now," initiating the spirit of this year's conference, and then...the fun began: Networking breaks, conversations with network executives, pitch sessions and "one on one" meetings with key personalities. Of course, there was music at night, following presentations of the projects of "Nalipsters on View" and the screening of the Sony picture Mother and Child, written and directed by Rodrigo Garcia, who was present for Q&A.

Attendees, including dedicated documentarians, had a great time with workshops, networking and mentoring from key industry people. Delegates described the experience as unique, not just because of the opportunities to meet well known people but because of the inspiration they were taking home.

An important day for documentary creators was Saturday. For the workshop "Anatomy of a Documentary," Greg Rhem, executive from HBO, and Argentinean Nicolas Entel, director of Sins of My Father, talked about all stages for producing and selling a documentary. Entel earned the 2010 NALIP Estela Award, which honors emerging and talented Latino/a filmmakers whose achievements show leadership, creativity and tenacity, as well as vision and passion for their craft. In the workshop, he shared how he worked on his documentary with Pablo Escobar's son and all the challenges he faced during those five years of work. But he is one of the lucky ones, because besides getting subsidized by Colombian and Argentinean governments, his film will air in the US on HBO and in Latin America on Discovery, as well as on channels in the UK, France and Spain. Entel shared that even with the fact that the economics of documentaries don't work as we want them to (which is why he also produces fiction media), that is a price he is willing to pay in order to make documentaries, "because I am the happiest in the entire universe when I am somewhere in the third world. I just finished my day of work on a documentary and I sat down for a beer at the creepiest bar in the world--that's when I am the happiest."

Following that workshop, participants moved to a session in which an evaluating panel of executives from Latino Public Broadcasting (LPB), Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), and Independent Television Service (ITVS) gave attendees some very constructive criticism. Some samples: "I didn't understand the central story"..."You created heat but no light"... "Keep it clean enough that PBS could air it"..."Your job is to try to get the audience to care"... "Don't use musical montages more than it needs to; let's get to the story." Angela Palmer, director of digital content and talent development at CPB, attends many NALIP events and sees different versions of those projects. "What I can say is that when you see them next time, they've taken the advice and it's always much better," she noted. Kathryn Galan, NALIP's executive director, agreed, adding, "This year the level of professionalism of the filmmaker was even higher, and there was another level of creation and dissemination of their stories. While last year this was an idea, this year we see inspiring successes of documentary and narrative makers that are working in that platform, that are creating, that are finding audiences, that are raising money, as a companion or as an alternative to standard broadcast and theatrical release. And I think that that's going to continue."

One example of how an attendee has benefited from this conference is filmmaker Tricia Creason-Valencia. She participated in NALIP in 2008, and this year she is participating in the Latino Media Market, in which selected people have the opportunity to submit proposals, budget, footage or other material for a completed project for distribution or an unfinished one for development. Funders have pre-selected participants because they are interested in their projects, and Creason-Valencia says, "They [NALIP] set so many meetings for me with funders. I can say from my experiences here, what [NALIP] does is help me build relationships with people that can help me with my project." And they have: She has landed a job teaching film, and she participated in the Latino Producers Academy and PBS production academy.

The early birds who could make it to the final Indie Link session on Sunday morning had a chance to meet with filmmakers Mitchell Teplitsky and Trish Lopez, who discussed fundraising and distribution. The closing plenary session featured a group of inspiring filmmakers who shared with everyone how they are navigating the sea of change. Beginning with the poor statistics of Latino presence in entertainment--2.5 percent in DGA, for example-director/producer Jesus Trevino argued that the reason why we have no presence "is because we ourselves have to hire Latinos behind the scenes." The filmmakers continued with the example of actress/producer Ruth Livier, who hired her friends and is working in the next season of an Internet series. Feature filmmaker Nestor Miranda told his story about how a big company was ready to start on his idea during the rising time of J-Lo and Ricky Martin. But then that same company released the infamous Chasing Papi, and didn't continue with his project. So, he took the lead and started to do it himself. "I just had to tell my story," he said. "My best advice is [that when you make it], pay it forward." Director Betty Kaplan noted, "Today you can do anything with technology," and gave the example of Ataque de Panico, a science fiction short that was made with $300. The filmmaker, Fede Alvarez of Uraguay, posted it on YouTube, and a couple of months and hundreds of thousands of views later, he was offered a $30 million deal with a Hollywood studio to direct a feature-length film, produced by Sam Raimi.

The finale of the NALIP Conference was a very emotional participation from all registrants presents sharing their weekend's experiences. "Ya no tenemos que pedir permiso [We don't have to ask permission to show our stories]," said one participant. Others took the opportunity to keep marketing their film or throwing ideas for next year's event. Isabel Cuevas, who has already won prizes for her short film In the Name of Freedom, was a "Nalipster on View" this year. Tearfully, she said, "It's been honestly the best business experience that I've ever had in the last decade. I think every filmmaker needs to be here...They put us in front of people every hour, people that you would [have] dreamed to be in front of, and they are accessible and they give us such amazing panels, workshops. And after the panels you can meet them and have a little talk, so that when the time is right they remember you." She was also very excited of having met people like actress/activist Lupe Ontiveros or Alex Nogales, CEO of National Hispanic Media Coalition, who shared their journeys and their struggles. "They have done a lot for us, and just hearing how hard it was for them, and they made it, inspires me," Cuevas exclaimed.

Rossy Eguigure is a writer, producer and Hispanic media consultant based in Los Angeles.

Call for Entries: HBO/NYILFF Short Film Competition

HBO and The New York International Latino Film Festival (NYILFF) today announced the annual "open call for entries" for the HBO/NYILFF Short Film Competition. Jointly created in 2004, the competition seeks to foster films by Latino filmmakers and/or about the Latino experience. HBO has been the presenting sponsor of the New York International Latino Film Festival for the past 11 years.

One winner will be chosen to receive $15,000 in funding from HBO to produce and direct a short film based on an original script entry. As in the past, this year's winner will receive prominent placement during screenings at the New York International Film Festival, July 27 - August 1, and considered for broadcast on one of HBO's programming services.

"The HBO/NYILFF Short Film Competition provides an exposure rarely given to new filmmakers," said Lucinda Martinez Desir, vice president, Acquisition & Multicultural Marketing at HBO. "This is a unique opportunity for up-and-coming filmmakers to showcase their talent and for the community-at-large to take pride and show their support. We commend the NYILFF for their ongoing efforts on behalf of emerging and established Latino and Urban filmmakers. "

"We're excited once again to partner with HBO for this unique opportunity for filmmakers," notes Calixto Chinchilla, NYILFF Executive Director. "In the past, the competition has brought attention to so many great shorts, and we look forward to seeing what's in store for us this year."

The HBO/NYILFF Short Film Competition is open to U.S. and international entrants 18 years and older. Only original scripts will be accepted and must be written in English by a person of Latino descent or focus on the Latino experience, and entrant must hold all rights to material. The screenplay cannot be more than twelve (12) pages long and final film cannot exceed a maximum running time of five (5) minutes. The submitted screenplay or work produced from it must not have had previous cable, broadcast or internet exhibition, won awards at any other festival or been previously submitted to the HBO/NYILFF Short Film Competition under its current or any former title.

Each entry must be accompanied by one completed submission form and $10.00 fee, a filmmaker bio and photo, a director's reel or copy of last film produced (DVD NTSC only), and one executed HBO/NYILFF Short Film Competition release form. There is no limit to the number of entries that can be submitted (see rules for more specifics). Entries must be postmarked by May 7, 2010 and mailed to HBO/NYILFF SHORT FILM COMPETITION, c/o The New York International Latino Film Festival, 419 Lafayette Street, 2nd Floor, New York, N.Y. 10003.

Applicants will be notified if their screenplay has been selected by May 22, 2010. For official rules, regulations and submission forms, log on to

Last year's HBO grant winner, John Estrada, produced and directed a short based on his original script Taco! Taco! Taco! The film, a humorous story about two taco stand owners who try to top each other - all in the name of business and pride - garnered praise at the NYILFF.

Call for Applications: NALAC Leadership Institute

The 10th annual NALAC Leadership Institute - held from July 5-10, 2010 in San Antonio, Texas - is now accepting applications. Join the ranks of the many Latino artists and arts administrators from around the country who have completed this nationally recognized leadership building program.

The NALAC Leadership Institute is the premier professional development program for the Latino arts field, providing invaluable administrative skills and leadership training to the next generation of Latino arts leaders.

The NALAC Leadership Institute brings emerging Latino artists and key staff of community based Latino arts and cultural organizations from across the nation for intensive training in nonprofit arts management and leadership development. Fifteen to twenty applicants are selected to attend each year.

Application Deadline is Saturday, May 15, 2010
For details and an application, please visit the NALA Leadership Institute website.

The NALAC Leadership Institute training includes instruction in such areas as:
* Fundraising and Grant Writing
* Capacity Building
* Audience Development
* Outreach & Publicity
* New Technologies
* Trends in Philanthropy
* Leadership Transition
* Case Study Reviews

The NALAC Leadership Institute also provides the unique opportunity to meet and network with peers from around the country working in every artistic discipline.

Past Leadership Institute instructors and presenters have included Rosalba Rolon (Pregones Theater), Abel Lopez (GALA Hispanic Theatre), Maribel Alvarez (The Southwest Center), Anthony J. Garcia (El Centro Su Teatro), Jesse Borrego (Actor) and Tomas Ybarra Frausto (independent scholar).

Call for Submissions: New Media Film Festival

The New Media Film Festival (NMFF) spotlights stories worth telling. We are looking for films that exemplify the power of the cinematic arts to inspire and transform. The festival celebrates innovative and imaginative visual work that can make audiences laugh, cry, think, and go beyond the ordinary.

In its inaugural year, NMFF will exhibit a selection of both short and long-form works that exhibit a strong personal vision combined with the highest standards of creative excellence and technical achievement. The films will be judged by a jury of notable film executives who will award a $10,000 grand prize of goods and services from Big Vision Studios. All finalists also will be viewed by distributors for possible online, theatrical, or broadcast distribution. NMFF runs June 11-13 at the Downtown Independent Theater in downtown Los Angeles.

Last but not least, any filmmaker who submits their work to the NMFF will receive FREE producer software ($89 value) from Showbiz Software.

Go to this website to submit your films:
NALIPsters can use the promotional code NM254 to get $5 off the submission fee.

  Diaz, Del Toro Have 'An Ax To Grind'
(Deadline New York) - 20th Century Fox has acquired screen rights to the Jane Heller novel An Ex To Grind, a package that comes with Cameron Diaz and Benicio Del Toro attached to play a warring couple in a romantic comedy. FULL STORY

Banksy Movie Boasts Strong Opening Numbers In Non-Traditional Release
(indieWIRE) - “Exit Through The Gift Shop,” the mysterious is-it-a-documentary from the equally mysterious British street artist Banksy, entered the market on eight screens in New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco this weekend. The result was a potent showing from a film that defied traditional release strategies, utilizing social media to get the word out. FULL STORY

Jobs & Opportunities

Visit the NALIP Job Opportunities page for all the latest listings.

Paid Summer Internships at the Ford Foundation (NYC)
The Ford Foundation is a private philanthropic institution that serves as a resource for innovative people and institutions worldwide. The Foundation's Summer Intern Program provides employment opportunities to New York City residents who are currently full-time undergraduate students, receiving significant financial aid for their education. FULL JOB DESCRIPTION

Open Casting Call for Hispanic Extras
Second open casting call for paid extras for The Gardener starring Demian Bichir. FULL JOB DESCRIPTION

From the Editor
Alex Mendoza
Alex Mendoza & Associates
AMARTE Design & Digital Printing
9513 Longden Avenue
Temple City, CA 91780

1323 Lincoln Blvd., #220
Santa Monica, CA 90401

Frances Negrón-Muntaner
Chair of NALIP Board of Advisors honored by El Diario/La Prensa

The Chair of the NALIP Board of Advisors Frances Negrón-Muntaner - scholar, filmmaker, and director of Columbia University's Center for the Study of Ethnicity and Race - has been named one of New York's most accomplished women by El Diario/La Prensa as part of the newspaper's annual "Mujeres Destacadas" awards.

Each year El Diario La Prensa, New York's oldest and most prestigious Spanish-language newspaper, honors 25 distinguished Latinas in the Tri-State area from every facet of society. Past winners have included Supreme Court Judge Sonia Sotomayor, Congresswoman Nydia Velazquez, and television journalist Soledad O'Brien.

For her work, Negrón-Muntaner has received Ford, Truman, Scripps Howard, Rockefeller, and Pew fellowships as well as Social Science Research Council and Andy Warhol Foundation grants. Among her books are: "Puerto Rican Jam: Rethinking Colonialism and Nationalism" (1997), "Boricua Pop: Puerto Ricans and the Latinization of American Culture" (winner of the CHOICE Award in 2004), and "Sovereign Acts" (forthcoming, South End Press). Her films include AIDS in the Barrio (Gold Award at the John Muir Film Festival in 1990), and Brincando el charco: Portrait of a Puerto Rican (1995, Whitney Biennial); she is currently finishing the documentary War in Guam for public television.

Negrón-Muntaner also co-founded the nation's largest Latino media organization, the National Association of Latino Independent Producers (NALIP). In 2005, she was named as one of the nation's "100 Most Influential Hispanics" by Hispanic Business Magazine and in 2008, the United Nations' Rapid Response Media Mechanism recognized her as a global expert in the areas of mass media and Latin/o American culture and politics.

The award ceremony will take place on April 18, 2010.

Francisco Ordoñez
NALIPster's short premiering at Tribeca

NALIP member and writer-director Francisco Ordoñez's short film Cookie will premiere at The 2010 Tribeca Film Festival. The film was one of just 47 selected out of 2717 short film submissions received by the festival this year.

Ordonez is in good company as this year's short film line-up boasts 21 other world premieres, a record number for the Festival, which includes a film directed and written by Kirsten Dunst, performances by Anthony Hopkins, Harry Dean Stanton, Vincent D'Onofrio, Lukas Haas, Brian Geraghty, David Thewlis, Sam Rockwell and Jesse Eisenberg, as well as this year's Short Film Oscar Winner, "New Tenants."

"It's an exciting year for Tribeca as we explore new initiatives to widen audiences for short films," said Maggie Kim, Tribeca Film Festival Shorts Programmer. "With one of our strongest shorts programs yet, and a record number of World and North American premieres from both returning and new filmmakers, we are confident that this year's line-up will provide a memorable cinematic experience for our audiences."

2010 marks the first year where audiences will have the opportunity to experience the Festival from their homes through a new online venture: Tribeca Film Festival Virtual (TFF Virtual).

Cookie is one of only 15 short films included in the The Tribeca Film Festival Virtual program allowing audiences across the nation who won't be in New York City to not only see Cookie, but other shorts, feature films, live red carpet events, panels, and Q&A Sessions.

"There's nothing like showing your work in your hometown and at a festival like Tribeca," said Ordoñez. "I'm honored that the Festival has recognized our film, and continues to recognize work from new directors that is challenging and strives to push the envelope of what commercial filmmaking can be."

Cookie will screen at Tribeca from April 23rd - May 2nd.

The 12-min short film Cookie was written and directed by award winning filmmaker Francisco Ordoñez. The story revolves around an interaction between three young men, and a streetwalker who leaves one of the three believing that he's been the victim of a pickpocket. When he convinces the other two young men to return to reclaim his wallet, the result is a night that will change their lives forever.

For more Tribeca / Cookie info please visit the film's page on the festival website.

To view the Cookie trailer click here.

Francisco Bello
NALIPster's film screening free at Tribeca

The public is invited to a FREE screeing of NALIP member Francisco Bello's (LPA 2007) film El Espiritu de la Salsa at the Tribeca Drive-In, part of the 2010 Tribeca Film Festival.

Thursday, April 22
6:00pm - Event kicks off with live music, salsa dancing and lessons
8:15pm - Screening begins
World Financial Center Plaza (The North Cove)
Seating is first-come, first served.

El Espiritu de la Salsa follows lonely hearts from all over New York City - an E.R. Doctor from Battery Park, a Construction Contractor from Queens, an Equities Trader from Wall Street, a Policeman from Midtown, to a Chronic Fatigue Sufferer from Washington Heights, among others - as they come together at Spanish Harlem's Santo Rico Dance School to let loose, dance and connect while learning the rich art of salsa. Under the tutelage of teacher Tomas Guerrero, they have only six weeks to rehearse for a public performance. Featuring music by Tito Puente, Eddie Santiago, Norah Jones, and more.

Director: Francisco Bello, Tim Sternberg
Producers: Francisco Bello, Matthew O'Neill, Tim Sternberg
Editor: Paula Heredia
Executive Producers: Jon Alpert, Sheila Nevins
Supervising Producer: Sara Bernstein

Click here for more info on the screening from the Tribeca Film Festival website.

Ben Lopez
NALIPster's feature screening in Tucson

NALIP Tucson Chapter leader Ben Lopez's latest feature film Sexo en Paraiso is screening this Thursday, April 22 at the Loft Cinema (3233 E. Speedway Blvd) in Tucson, Arizona. The film starts at 7:00pm, general admission tickets are $6.

Co-written, produced and directed by Ben Lopez, Sexo en Paraiso is a passionate crime thriller about Sanchez (Dwayne Palmer), a tenacious detective determined to crack one last case before retirement.

Set in the background of a foreboding desert town, Blanca (Kim Hesser, La Venganza), a young woman, escapes an abusive relationship and is saved by her empathetic neighbor, Alex (Maggie Guzman). Together, they must confront the fallout from an ongoing investigation centered around the disappearance of one of the town's chief criminal targets.

Reminiscent of the crime thrillers of the 1970s, Sexo en Paraiso is filled with tension and mystery, ultimately drawing the viewer into a sordid world filled with fear, lies, and desire. Shot and produced in and around Southern Arizona and Mexico, Sexo en Paraiso takes advantage of the landscape and feeling of isolation that permeates the desert as well as the characters within the film.

(VientoFuego Productions, 2010, USA, 97 mins. Spanish with English subtitles, Not Rated)

Robertino Fonseca
NALIPster's film premiering at La Jolla Fashion Film Fest.

NALIP member and Los Angeles based fashion cinema pioneer Robertino Fonseca's new film The World Ends Without You will premiere at the La Jolla Fashion Film Festival, held April 23 and 24.

Haunted by events from the previous night, a mysterious woman roams the city streets trying to remember who she is.

The inaugural La Jolla Fashion Film Festival, April 23 and 24 in the seaside hamlet, will be the first Stateside fest to focus solely on the short fashion film genre. Five shorts will make their world premieres: Jean-Claude Thibaut's "The End," Noam Griegst's "Two Women and a Bear," Janet Pytowski's "Style Is Eternal" and Robertino Fonseca's "The World Ends Without You." In addition, Pamela Hanson's short for Charlotte Ronson's spring 2010 collection, "Tonight You Belong to Me," will make its film festival premiere, as will others by Karl Lagerfeld, Marisa Crawford, Max Vadukul, Ellen Von Unwerth, Jamie Isaia and Michael Haussman.



Contact us at to post news, announcements, business data or job postings.

To SUBSCRIBE send an email to

to UNSUBSCRIBE send an email to

The Latinos in the Industry e-Newsletter is a free service provided by the National Association of Latino Independent Producers (NALIP) with the generous assistance of Alex Mendoza & Associates (AMA) in an "as-is" basis for the education and information of users only. NALIP and/or AMA, their principal(s), employees, agents or representatives shall under no circumstances be liable for any loss or damage, including, but not limited to, loss of profits, goodwill or indirect or consequential loss arising out of any use of or inaccuracies in the information. All warranties expressed or implied are excluded to the fullest extent permissible by law. All comments and postings, including those by the Editor, are the responsibility of those individuals posting and no endorsement by NALIP and/or AMA should be inferred. Referral links and individual e-mail forwarding are permitted. NALIP reserves the right to withdraw or delete information or to discontinue this service at any time. All quoted, linked and/or referred information, as well as all copyrights and trademarks, are the property of their respective holders, used here under license and/or "fair-use" rules. © NALIP.