Five recognized at WIF’s 27th annual Crystal + Lucy Awards a gala gathering of Hollywood’s premiere talent
Los Angeles, CA--(HISPANIC PR WIRE)--June 11, 2005--Winners of the prestigious WIF/GM Latina New Filmmaker Grant, announced in February by Women In Film (WIF) and its national presenting sponsor General Motors Corporation (GM), were revealed at WIF’s 27th annual Crystal + Lucy Awards dinner gala, Friday, June 10, at the legendary Beverly Hills Hotel in California.
The WIF/GM Latina New Filmmaker Grant is to be awarded annually to five up-and-coming Latina filmmakers, providing them with a broad-based understanding of the business of filmmaking through a six-day, full-immersion mentoring program shepherded by members of WIF, which includes much of the industry’s most successful female talent.
In front of a prominent entertainment industry gathering – including Sandra Bullock, Bruce Willis, Jamie Foxx and Debra Messing, to name a few – Latina actress Daisy Fuentes announced the grant’s inaugural winners, including:
-- Carmen C. Avila, Glendale, Calif. — In addition to her position as manager of production payroll in the television department of NBC/Universal, Avila was executive in charge of production for Disney/Touchstone’s Mercenary II: Thick & Thin, a Robert Townsend project filmed in Mexico. Avila’s film English Only, produced for Universal Television’s The Hispanic Film Project, was selected from 1,500 entries to complete at the 1998 Sundance Film Festival. A second effort, El Artista, was sold into syndication. She is currently developing a feature film based on the novel Albuquerque, by Rudolfo Anaya, who is known as the “Godfather” of Chicano literature.
-- Yasmina Cádiz, Chicago, Ill. — Co-founder of XChromosomeFilms.com in 2003, a film production company that promotes, supports and helps create opportunities for women in the entertainment industry. Producer, writer and director of the short film Mama Said, a selection at six film festivals (including the upcoming New York International Latino Film Festival, July 26-31), Cádiz is currently at work on her next project, Twelve Signs, based on 12 interwoven stories with an astrological theme.
-- Claudia A. Mercado, Los Angeles, Calif. — Founder of Womyn Image Makers,
Mercado – a substitute teacher for the Los Angeles Unified School District – has served as a producer, director, cinematographer and editor on a variety of projects. She is currently at work on her first documentary, Women Who Remember, about Chicana, Latina and Mexican women living in the U.S. who are embracing “indigenismo,” urban Native American Latina culture.
-- Carolina Pfister, New Orleans, La. — Having recently earned her masters degree from the University of Wisconsin in Milwaukee, where she also taught video workshops at inner city schools, Pfister is now living in New Orleans. She is currently editing Viva Viva, a documentary about three generations of punk rockers in São Paulo, Brazil. Born in Europe to Brazilian parents fleeing dictatorship, Pfister – who worked at MTV Brazil while attending undergraduate film school – has filmed/interviewed a variety of subjects from Latino gang members in Milwaukee to female inmates in Brazilian prisons.
-- Nicole Valdizān Sacker, Los Angeles, Calif. — A writer and filmmaker who has produced and/or directed 14 films, Sacker’s work has been chosen as an official selection at 17 film festivals, with The Duel winning “Best Director” at the 2004 Boyle Heights Latina Independent Film Extravaganza. She is also serving as production coordinator on the horror film 7eventy-5ive and at work producing/directing a pilot for a TV sitcom, Living Together.
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