Marvin Lemus is a Mexican-Guatemalan-American writer and director born and raised in California, who drove his struggle of not belonging to a specific culture into creating digital content. He wrote Gente-Fied: The Digital Series, where he represented his neighborhood and his story of growing up not enough Mexican, not enough Guatemalan, not enough American. Also, he directed the short-film Vamonos that took him to the Sundance Film Festival.
He knew he wanted to direct since he was eight years old, he was always with a camera trying to tell stories. His inspiration to do digital content came from watching George Lopez doing Stand Up comedy, for the first time he felt he had someone to connect with and that understood his life. After working for a while as a Production Assistant for Realities, he realized that he didn’t want to do that anymore, so he decided to start his own Youtube Channel and create his own digital content.
Digital Media empowered Lemus in the way he had always dreamt, the idea that to be successful you had to be white, like he saw on film and tv since he was a kid, was over. As a writer of Gente-Field he’s trying to give Latinx a sense of identification by showing authenticity. That's why it is a bilingual series, with seven different characters that have unique Latinx qualities.
Lemus’s experience with NALIP started in 2017 when he did a few workshops with Claudia Restrepo by giving filmmakers the tools and tips to work with digital content. He defined this experience as a great way to connect with other people and to build a community that reminds Latinx that we are all in this together. For him, that’s what we are inclusion means, being able to create more opportunities for people that grow up feeling that they didn’t belong to a place, is given the chance to women and to other to tell their stories, listen to something different, is to tell the others “I’m here, I exist, and I worth it”.
Although he knows he was lucky and his story is out of the norm, he feels that with the help of NALIP and the advance Latinx are making in the industry, Latinx out there are going to stop feeling alone and more represented because “we can do this, and don’t tell me no because I have already done it”.