Latinos In The Industry
  October 7, 2008  

Latinos '08 PBS Doc Examines Presidential Election

With the presidential election a month away, a new documentary from NALIP member Phillip Rodriguez examines how supporters of Barack Obama and John McCain are trying to mobilize Latinos, who are less cohesive than other ethnic voter blocs and who do not fit the black/white racial binary that has long shaped American politics.

Latinos ‘08 airs Wednesday, October 8, at 9 to 10 p.m. on PBS (check local listings).

The program explores the increasing presence of Latinos on the American political scene through the wider lens of ethnic politics across U.S. history, says Rodriguez, the award-winning Los Angeles filmmaker. “This is just the latest chapter of the American immigrant assimilation story,” Henry Cisneros points out in the film. Cisneros, the former mayor of San Antonio and Clinton Administration cabinet member, is joined in the documentary by a lineup of astute political commentators and scholars, complemented with animation and graphics.

John F. Kennedy’s presidential campaign in 1960 was the first to make a concerted effort to reach Latino voters, and the documentary features a TV ad, delivered gingerly in Spanish, by Jacqueline Kennedy. In 1980, Ronald Reagan broke through the traditional Democratic-voting pattern of Latinos by appealing to their conservative family values.

McCain was seen favorably by many Latinos for his support of a comprehensive immigration reform, but he has retreated from that position amid hostile attacks against illegal immigrants. Those attacks, to some, appeared to demonize Latinos in general. “Some of that rhetoric sounded anti-Hispanic specifically,” says TV commentator Leslie Sanchez, a Republican. Meanwhile, Obama was beaten soundly by Hillary Clinton in the primaries, and her support was especially strong among Latinas. This political landscape sets up some key questions in Campaign 2008: Will McCain manage to win significant Latino voters despite the Republican Party's harsh immigration rhetoric? Will Democrat Barack Obama succeed in securing the Latino votes of Hillary Clinton supporters?

Predicting how Latinos will vote is a risky exercise because of the heterogeneity among Mexican Americans, Puerto Ricans, Cubans, Central Americans and other national groups. Latinos, like others, also are divided by class and education, and the lives of more recent immigrants are often vastly different than those of U.S.-born Latinos.

New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson, a Mexican American, competed in the Democratic primaries earlier this year but did not fare well. He was running against two mega-stars -- Obama and Clinton. And, as one program commentator says, Richardson ran as a “non-Latino candidate.” Marketing executive Lionel Sosa, a Republican strategist, says of Richardson: “Maybe some people did not support him because he was Latino, and maybe Latinos didn’t support him because he wasn’t Latino enough.”

The ethnic group’s identity and role in national politics is evolving rapidly, and Columbia University political scientist Rodolfo de la Garza, asks: “What will it mean to be Latino” in the future?

For now, Latinos are the nation’s largest ethnic/racial minority. But with low rates of naturalization and low turnout among those who are naturalized, Latino voters have yet to achieve the level of political participation of other groups. Those who do vote constitute an increasingly divided electorate. In 2004, for example, the Latino vote was roughly split between the two parties.

How, then, are today’s candidates and advocacy groups trying to mobilize and attract this group of voters? This documentary considers current strategies, from get-out-the-vote campaigns to bilingual blogs to mariachi theme songs. Says columnist Ruben Navarette Jr.: “Most of the people who run for president, they’re all mostly white males, and when they show up, they show up with mariachis, they show up with chips and salsa. We get tired of being defined by a food group.”

Latinos ’08 also addresses the lack of top-tier Latino national leaders. Says USC Professor Roberto Suro, former head of the Pew Hispanic Center: “Many have tried; many have fallen, often as a result of personal weaknesses, because of scandals.”

Latinos ’08 features interviews with a wide range of prominent Latinos, including former Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Henry Cisneros, Political/Marketing Consultant Lionel Sosa, Columnist Ruben Navarrette Jr., Obama Campaign Co-Chair Federico Peña, National Political Commentator Leslie Sanchez, The Rev. Luis Cortés of Esperanza USA, and Professors Rodolfo de la Garza of Columbia, Roberto Suro of USC and Luis Fraga of the University of Washington.

Phillip Rodriguez’s documentaries include Brown is the New Green: George Lopez and the American Dream (2007), Los Angeles Now (2004), Mixed Feelings: San Diego/Tijuana (2002), Manuel Ocampo: God is My Copilot (1999), and Pancho Villa & Other Stories (1998). A Senior Fellow at the Institute for Justice and Journalism at the USC Annenberg School for Communication, he received the first annual United States Artists’ Broad Fellow Award.

Latinos ’08 is a production of 323 Projects, LLC. Latinos ’08 was made possible by PBS, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and Latino Public Broadcasting. Travel provided by Southwest Airlines.

Uruguayan Film Stranded Opening in NYC

The film Stranded: I've Come From a Plane That Crashed on The Mountains, by Uruguayan filmmaker Gonzalo Arijón, will open at Film Forum in New York City on October 22. This documentary of both cinematic and historic value will be showing until November 4.

It is one of the most astonishing and inspiring survival tales of all time. On October 13, 1972, a young rugby team from Montevideo, Uruguay, boarded a plane for a match in Chile—and then vanished into thin air. Two days before Christmas, 16 of the 45 passengers miraculously resurfaced. They had managed to survive for 72 days after their plane crashed on a remote Andean glacier. Thirty-five years later, the survivors returned to the crash site—known as the Valley of Tears—to recount their harrowing story of defiant endurance and indestructible friendship. Previously documented in the 1973 worldwide bestseller Alive (and the 1993 Ethan Hawke movie of the same name), this shocking true story finally gets the cinematic treatment it deserves. Visually breathtaking and crafted with riveting detail by documentary filmmaker (and childhood friend of the survivors) Gonzalo Arijon with a masterful combination of on-location interviews, archival footage and reenactments, Stranded is by turns hauntingly powerful and spiritually moving.

For more information on the film please go to
To watch the trailer please visit:
For tickets go to:



Pablo Proenza & Erin Ploss-Campoamor
NALIPsters create online political ads

NALIP member Pablo Proenza (LWL 2004) directed a series of political ads for Over 100 people volunteered for this shoot - including associate producer and NALIP member Erin Ploss-Campoamor (LPA 2004) - out of concern for what may be the most important election of our lives... and our children's lives. Two of the ads are currently on-line, more will be posted in the upcoming days.

Please share and rate the spots on YouTube!

Jesús Galindo
NALIPster's feature accepted into Orlando Hispanic Film Festival

NALIP member Jesús Galindo's feature film and directorial debut, El Derecho de Jesús - The Right of Jesús, has been accepted into the Orlando Hispanic Film Festival. This is the third film festival that has garnered the movie attention this year, after the Beverly Hills Hi-Def Film Festival and The Newfilmmakers NY .

Screening Date:
Saturday, October 11, 2008, at 4:00 p.m. Univision Theater

Synopsis: El Derecho de Jesús - The Right of Jesús is a modern day drama in which Jesús (played by Antonio Rufino), a Mexican-American college student living in Los Angeles, CA has to deal with contemporary family issues and unstable love relationships. His keen ability to make bad decisions based on emotion takes him straight on a collision course with his turbulent past, insecure present and uncertain future, forcing him to face his fears and take a stand.

For more information on the festival, visit the festival’s website:

NALIP/NY Members Participate in Panel Discussion and Screening

Some of NALIP/NY's former and current Board members and an Academy Award-nominated member from the New York chapter participated in a panel discussion last Saturday, October 4 at the Newark Public Library to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month.

Five Latino and Latina filmmakers currently producing features and documentaries in the United States shared how their projects were inspired, created and developed. Selections from the panelists’ films were screened. It also included an extensive Q&A session.

* Sonia González-Martínez, "Bragging Rights: Stickball Stories"
* Betty García, "Lola"
* Edwin Pagán, "Bronx Burning"
* Adel Morales, "The Reckoning"
* Francisco Bello, "Salim Baba"
Moderator: Louis E. Perego Moreno, President, Skyline Features, "Latina Confessions"

Please click here for bios of all the participants.



Latinos Headed to the Big Screen This Fall
(San Antonio Express-News) - From horror thrillers and teen flicks to biopics and inspirational dramas, Latinos are headed to the big screen this fall. FULL STORY

Voters United by Heritage but Not Always by Opinion
(The New York Times) - It’s not often that a documentary makes the case for its own spuriousness, but in a sense that’s what “Latinos ’08” eventually does. That may sound like a criticism, but it’s intended as a compliment. FULL STORY

Mexican Director Servando Gonzalez Dies at 85
(The Associated Press) - Servando Gonzalez Hernandez rose from gofer at a Mexican film studio to become a director in Hollywood. But he may be most remembered in Mexico for a film that nobody ever saw. FULL STORY

Rosy Thompson Promoted to President of Marketing at Arenas Group
Rosy Thompson has been promoted to the position of President of Marketing at the Arenas Group, the Los Angeles based entertainment and Media Company recognized as the foremost authority in marketing entertainment products to U.S. Latino audiences.

In less than seven months since Rosy joined Arenas as VP Media Director, her skill and talent for developing strategic media solutions and integrated strategies for Arenas’ entertainment clients have prepared her to take full marketing leadership of the Arenas departments of publicity, promotion, creative and media.

Rosy had laid the foundation of her presidential leadership during her 19 years with Casanova Pendrill. As head of Casanova's media department, she oversaw the development and execution of media campaigns for a variety of local, regional and national categories including, most importantly for her new position at Arenas, entertainment: Universal Studios, DirecTV and Xbox.

Santiago Pozo, CEO of Arenas says of Rosy: “With a total of more than 26 years in marketing, her extensive experience in the Hispanic market makes her one of the most valuable and respected professionals in this industry. Her leadership as President of Marketing at Arenas will reflect her broad experience and expertise and will benefit our clients.”

“In this new position, I look forward to my continuing relationship with Santiago and the Arenas team of Hispanic marketing experts,” says Rosy. “The challenge presented in today’s economic turmoil requires that we, as team Arenas, fulfill the goal of giving our clients the most effective and efficient return on their marketing investments in the U.S. Latino market. And we gladly accept this challenge.”

Jobs & Opportunities

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

FCP Editor for Doc Short
Seeking a FCP editor - with or without your own system - for a documentary short. FULL JOB DESCRIPTION

Digital Effects Artist
Seeking digital FX master for upcoming action film. FULL JOB DESCRIPTION

Casting: Zugzwang Short Film (San Antonio)
Background: Zugzwang, (German for compulsion to move, pronounced ‘sues-vang’), is scheduled to be a 15 min short produced in San Antonio, filmed throughout the city, with one location in Bandera county. 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

Contact us at webmaster@nalip.infoTo 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.