NewFilmmakers L.A. And AMPAS Set Virtual Program For Latinx & Hispanic Cinema Festival

NewFilmmakers Los Angeles (NFMLA) and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) have teamed once again for the annual NFMLA Film Festival InFocus: Latinx & Hispanic Cinema Festival — but this time it’s virtual. The fest is set for September 25-26 which aligns with Hispanic Heritage Month which kicks off September 15 and continues through October 15.

With Seed&Spark as the platform, this year’s program includes two shorts programs and a presentation of Varda Bar-Kar’s documentary Fandango at the Wall which is executive produced by Quincy Jones and Carlos Santana. The docu was recently acquired by HBO.

The fest will also feature emerging filmmakers from the U.S., Mexico, Brazil, Peru, Spain, Chile, and the Dominican Republic including the world premieres of Alberto Belli’s After Life Vacation, Kate Romero’s Chronology, and Alyssa Toledo’s Lift Off.

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“This year’s slate contains a lot of powerful common themes around the powers of family, community, symbolism and imagination as ways of both coping with and understanding the world,” says NFMLA Programming Director Bojana Sandic.

The program includes DGA Student Grand Prize for Latino Directors prize winner Día De Las Carpas by João Dall’Stella, as well as new work by Cannes Lions Young Director Award winner Alberto Belli and previous Student Academy Awards semi-finalist Thais Drassinower.

Panelists at this year’s fest include Shari Page at Ryan Murphy Television, Luke Rodgers at wiip, Carole Kirschner at the CBS Diversity Writers Program and WGA Showrunner Training Program, Adam Martinez at CBS Television Studios, Axel Caballero at WarnerMedia 150, Ruben Garcia at CAA, Christopher Casanova at Black Bear Pictures, Dave Neustadter at New Line Cinema, Adrian Ward at Banc of California Entertainment Finance, Nicolás Celis at Pimienta Films, AGBO creative and production executives Joey Dizon, Austin Bowman and Josh Williams and others.

“We are grateful to our industry professionals and partners for lending their time and support to this program. It has been amazing working with the Academy to showcase Latinx and Hispanic voices and they’ve really helped to elevate these storytellers,” says NFMLA Executive Director and Co-Founder Larry Laboe.

The festival will also include Academic delegations of film students from various colleges and film schools led by NFMLA’s Events and Outreach, Andrew Acedo. These delegations of students and faculty are coming together to rally around emerging, Latinx voices in celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month.

Entertainment focused panels will take place on September 25 with film screenings and Q&As taking place on  September 26.

A full list of official selections is available below.


  • Acuitzeramo (Dir. & Writ. Miguel Angel Caballero)
  • After Life Vacation (Dir. Alberto Belli & Writ. Maria Brasero)
  • Being In (Dir. & Writ. Victor M. Rocha)
  • Chronology (Dir. Kate Romero & Writ. Valerie Hurt)
  • Día de Las Carpas (Dir. João Dall’Stella & Writ. Marika Kato Hoag)
  • Lift Off (Dir. & Writ. Alyssa Toledo)
  • Manzanal (Dir. Jon Ayon)
  • Nahjum (Dir. Sebastian Torres Greene, Manuel Del Valle & Writ. Sebastian Torres Greene, Manuel Del Valle, Erik Hirschhorn)
  • Napo (Dir. Gustavo Ribeiro & Writ. Gustavo Ribeiro , Gabriela Antonia Rosa)
  • Papi (Dir. & Writ. Gabriela Ortega)
  • The Catch (Dir. Thais Drassinower & Writ. Camila Zavala)
  • The Little Thief (Dir. Nicole Vanden Broeck & Writ. András Roder)
  • Undocumented (Dir. & Writ. Fernanda Belmar)
  • Water Dreams (Dir. & Writ. Domingo Pablo Ortiz)


  • Fandango at the Wall (Dir. Varda Bar-Kar & Writ. Varda Bar-Kar, Kabir Sehgal)

For complete details on the festival visit


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