September 2022 UCE

DGA Latino Summit 2022: Connect, Advance & Amplify

September 10, 2022 A DGA Latino Committee Virtual Event

On September 10, DGA members from all over came together online for the second annual DGA Latino Summit, a day dedicated to connecting, advancing, and amplifying Latinx DGA members and increasing representation across categories. Hosted by the Latino Committee (LC), the event was a launching point to discuss important topics in the film and television industry and featured conversations addressing the underrepresentation of Latino Directors and Director’s team members and a mixer devoted to directly addressing that issue. Latino Summit Coordinator Regina Ainsworth and LC Co-Chair SJ Main Muñoz introduced the event.

“It is clearer than ever that now is the critical time when our diverse DGA community, encompassing both our national American and international filmmakers, must become more involved and join forces to create systemic change,” said Main Muñoz. “We must continue to prove our talent, our power and our potential not only as directors and director team members but as storytellers and culture makers.”

Following their introduction, Ainsworth and Main Muñoz invited DGA President Lesli Linka Glatter to give the DGA Welcome.

Today we take a moment to continue this important and essential conversation,” said Glatter. “Take a moment to celebrate accomplishments, but most importantly, to continue to focus on the work that still absolutely must be done.”

Glatter then turned the proceedings over to Summit Coordinator Daniel Bydlowski, who introduced the first of the day’s three panel discussions. At the end of the day, Muñoz and Latino Committee Co-Chair Jay Torres delivered the closing remarks.


Latino Summit 2022Spotlight on Director Eva Longoria

In the first discussion of the day, Director/Actor/Activist/Producer Eva Longoria shared her experience developing ideas, talent, and voices in the current landscape of television and feature filmmaking in a one-on-one conversation moderated by Director Ángel Manuel Soto.

During the discussion Longoria shared her belief that Latinos need to "aggregate and be as powerful as our purchasing power is."

She also spoke about incorporating her background into her career choices. “I’ve leaned into my latinidad, I’ve leaned into my chingona-isms; I’m not really apologetic... I navigate the industry with grace and confidence because I really educate myself and I really prepare myself for whatever room I’m going to be in.”


Latino Summit 2022La Inspiración:
A Conversation with Pilot Directors

The Summit’s first panel discussion, La Inspiración: A Conversation with Pilot Directors, featured Directors Patricia Cardoso (Shelter), Linda Mendoza (Life by Ella), Rachel Raimist (Wild Life) and Patricia Riggen (Proven Innocent) in an exploration of the unique challenges of pilot production and the world of television pilot directing. During a conversation moderated by Director Eli Gonda (On My Block), they covered the process from pitching and prep to production.

During the conversation, Cardoso imparted advice on for prospective  pilot Directors. “Do your homework and bring your passion… You can tell when someone has done their homework and really put time into creating that vision. That becomes very obvious.”

Raimist also shared advice for new pilot Directors, saying, “Lead with who you are and what you bring; they hired you because of that! Have confidence in that and in any moment you feel doubtful, call your people, call your friends… we have lines of communication to each other.”

Mendoza spoke about preparing pitch decks and presentations. “I had to hire someone to help me up my game because it does matter what you go in with. And make sure you’re selling: these are the comps that I believe in, these are the kinds of shots I think will help tell the story, these are the people I think will help fill these character roles that make sense to me. Every pitch is different.” 

Riggen shared her  joy to be in a panel of women who direct pilots. The DGA has done incredible work through decades of pointing out, ‘Where are the women in TV? Where are the women in TV?!?’ And finally, they started hiring women! And then after hiring women for episodic, finally — this is really new, — all of us directing pilots for the first time in history! This is huge and it has to do with that pointing the DGA did. I am very excited and grateful to the DGA being here right now and I hope this happens in movies one day.”


Latino Summit 2022Feature Filmmaking Del Futuro:
The Next Five Years

The Summit’s final panel, Feature Filmmaking Del Futuro: The Next Five Years, was a roundtable conversation with industry executives: 3Pas Studios VP of Features Agustine Calderon; Macro VP of Film Production & Development Greta Fuentes and Fifth Season EVP of Film Group Alexis Garcia. In a frank conversation moderated by Director Regina Ainsworth, the panelists shared their views on the future of filmmaking with revelations such as how Producers are more thoughtfully considering the decision to back projects intended for theatrical viewing; how hybrid film/steaming models are getting less traction in this phase of COVID. They also added that there is currently a lot of discussion on the effect of the success of the Daniels' Everything Everywhere All At Once had on producers regarding what you can make for a theatrical experience; and that with interest rates rising, spending will probably be curbed on the development side as opposed to the large glut of new content, especially if the economy goes into full blown recession.


Latino Summit 2022Direct Connects: Latino Summit Mixer

Following the webinar, the Summit moved into directly addressing some of the issues raised via Direct Connects, a mixer where Latino members of the Guild could meet online with industry decision-makers in breakout room sessions that included Directors, UPMs and Producers from various projects; Agents; and Representatives from companies including: A24, ABC, Amazon Studios, CBS, Disney HBO, Netflix, HBO, Paramount, Netflix Warner Bros and more.

(See the full list of VIPs below.)


See video highlights from these discussions in the gallery below


About the Panelists:

SPOTLIGHT ON DIRECTOR EVA LONGORIA 
Eva LongoriaDirector Eva Longoria
Having worked consistently in Hollywood for over 20 years, Longoria has cemented herself as an industry staple known for her work both in front of and behind the camera. An award-winning Actress, Emmy Award-nominated Director, Producer, Entrepreneur, Philanthropist, and Activist, Longoria has been leading the charge of diverse and female representation since her starring role in the hit ABC series Desperate Housewives. Her directorial credits include the movie for television Glamorous; the documentaries La Guerra Civil and Latinos Living the American Dream; the pilot episode of Gordita Chronicles; the mini-series Eva Longoria’s Versus; and episodes Why Women KillThe Expanding Universe of Ashley GarciaGrand HotelBlack-ishThe MickLA to VegasJane the Virgin and Devious Maids. Alongside Directors Jody Margolin Hahn and Jeff Melman, she was a 2021Daytime Emmy Nominee for Outstanding Directing Team for a Daytime Fiction Program for Ashley Garcia: Genius in Love. She is currently in post-production on her debut feature, Flamin’ Hot. Longoria joined the DGA in 2015. 
 
Angel Manuel SotoDirector Ángel Manuel Soto (moderator)
Soto made his feature directorial debut with La Granja (The Farm) which sheds light on the tough realities facing the people of his native Puerto Rico. He went on to create several groundbreaking narrative VR pieces such as “Dinner Party” and “Bashir’s Dream.” More recently, Soto directed the 2020 Sundance Grand Jury Prize nominated-feature, Charm City Kings. He has been a DGA member since 2018. 
 

 

LA INSPIRACIÓN: A CONVERSATION WITH PILOT DIRECTORS

Patricia CardosoDirector Patricia Cardoso
Cardoso’s directorial credits include the feature films, Real Women Have Curves — the first film by a Latinx woman Director to be included in the Library of Congress's National Film Registry and to receive a Sundance Audience Award — and El Paseo De Teresa; the movies for television, Lies in Plain Sight and Meddling Mom; the pilot for the series, Harlan Coben's Shelter; and episodes of Party of FiveAll RiseQueen Sugar and In the Dark. Cardoso won a DGA Student Film Award for her 1994 short, The Water Carrier of Cucunuba. She has been a DGA member since 2001 and is also a member of the DGA Independent Directors Committee. 
 
Linda MendozaDirector Linda Mendoza
Mendoza worked as an Associate Director on the skitcom In Living Color, and as an Assistant Director on live events like MTV Unplugged and the MTV Music Awards. She began her directing career on The Chris Rock Show and The Bernie Mac Show. Her directorial credits include episodes of Life by Ella30 RockThe Good PlaceSuperstoreScrubsCavemenUnbreakable Kimmy SchmidtUgly BettyNever Have I EverThe Baby-Sitters ClubBrooklyn Nine-NineBlack-ishFuller House and The Tick. She earned DGA Award nominations for her specials, Wanda Sykes: Not Normal (2019), Kennedy Center Mark Twain Prize Celebrating David Letterman (2017), Smithsonian Salutes Ray Charles: In Performance at the White House (2015) and Paul McCartney: The Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song in Performance at The White House (2010). She is currently working on the Netflix pilot, Survival of the Thickest. Mendoza has been a DGA Member since 1987. 
 
Rachel RaimistDirector Rachel Raimist
Raimist’s directorial credits include the pilot of the series Wild Life; episodes of the series, Up Here, Sex/Life, Sex Lives of College GirlsThe Big LeapTang: An American SagaDiary of a Future PresidentThe Republic of SarahNancy DrewGreenleafTruth to PowerQueen Sugar and Roswell, New Mexico; and the documentaries Stories of the Storm and Nobody Knows My Name. A DGA member since 2018, Raimist has served on the DGA Special Projects Committee, as an alternate Co-Chair of the Latino Committee and as a Co-Coordinator of the Women’s Steering Committee’s Activities & Events Committee. 
 
Patricia RiggenDirector Patricia Riggen
Riggen’s directorial credits include the feature films, The 33Miracles from HeavenGirl in Progress and Under the Same Moon; the movie for television, Surveillance and Run for Your Life; the pilot for the series, Proven Innocent; and episodes of Dopesick and Tom Clancy's Jack Ryan. She received a DGA Award nomination for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Children's Programs for her 2011 movie for television, Lemonade Mouth. Riggen joined the DGA in 2010. 
 
Eli GondaDirector Eli Gonda (moderator)
Gonda’s directorial credits include the feature films Sid Is Dead and The Outfield; and episodes of FreeridgeOn My BlockABC Discovers: Los Angeles Talent ShowcaseMarvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Husbands. He has been a member of the DGA since 2019 and is an alumnus of the Disney | ABC Directing Program, and the 2021-2022 DGA Television Director Mentorship Program. 
 


FEATURE FILMMAKING DEL FUTURO: THE NEXT FIVE YEARS
Agustine CalderonAgustine Calderon
Calderon is currently Vice President of Features at 3Pas Studios. He was previously at RatPac Entertainment, where he spent 11 years, starting as an intern and moving his way up to a Development Executive in TV/Film. He worked on several movies, including Seth Gordon’s Horrible Bosses, Sean Anders’s Horrible Bosses 2, Justin Kurzel’s Assassins Creed, Brett Ratner’s Tower Heist and Alejandro G. Iñárritu’s DGA Award-winning feature, The Revenant
 
Greta FuentesGreta Talia Fuentes
Fuentes is Vice President, Film Production and Development at Macro, the multi-platform media company that represents the voice and perspectives of Black people, indigenous people and people of color. She served as a co-producer of Justin Chon’s feature, Blue Bayou; as an Executive Producer on Esteban Arango’s Blast Beat; and as an Associate Producer on Alan Yang’s feature debut, Tigertail. Fuentes is currently set as Executive Producer of upcoming Macro films including I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter, Void and Rainbowfish. A champion of LatinX voices, Fuentes is also a Co-Founder and Board Member of The Latin Tracking Board which was launched in 2017 and has amassed over 200 members.
 
Alexis GarciaAlexis Garcia
Garcia is an EVP and runs the Film Group at Fifth Season, one of the world’s leading independent film and TV studios. His Fifth Season team has financed nearly 20 movies in the last three years including Julio Quintana’s Blue Miracle, Cooper Raiff’s Cha Cha Real Smooth, Tyler Nilson & Michael Schwartz’s DGA First-Time Feature Director Award-nominated film, The Peanut Butter Falcon and Maggie Gyllenhaal’s DGA First-Time Feature Director Award-winning film, The Lost Daughter
 
Regina AinsworthDirector Regina Ainsworth (moderator)
Ainsworth’s directorial credits include the feature length documentary, Red Dog & Bates; episodes of the indie dramedy, Linked by Love; the independent pilots, The Project and Law & Order: The Musical; the dramatic shorts Better Together and Breaking Glass; and the award-winning short films, Recombined and Perchance to Dream and proof of concepts Unveiled and Stay. A DGA member since 2018, Ainsworth is a two-time DGA Latino Committee Co-Chair and co-founder of los directores, a Guild-level collective of Latin Directors and Director’s team members who are dedicated to making the invisible visible, via equitable employment. 
 

Latino Summit Mixer VIPS

Directors:

  • Marvin Lemus
  • Phil Lord
  • Prentice Penny
  • Marcos Siega

UPMs:

  • Alexandra Vivas
  • Canella Williams-Larrabee

Producers:

  • Jay Wieslander
  • Nate Matteson, Super Frog Films

Agents:

  • Claire Best, Claire Best & Associates
  • Vanessa Livingston, RBEL
  • Lindsay Lehrman, RBEL
  • Tyler Reynolds, Verve
  • Stephanie Rothman, RBEL

Executives:

  • Moises Amsel, Gato Grande Productions
  • Sahhara Assafiri, Amazon Studios
  • Daniel Barnes, Cloudco Entertainment
  • Angeline Buenaventura, Netflix
  • Tiffany Burrell-Lewis, Netflix
  • Jorge García Castro, AlteredLA
  • Javier Chapa, Mucho Mas Media
  • Sydney Coleman, A24
  • Efrain Cortes, ABC
  • Dana Cox, Kaplan/Perrone Entertainment
  • Emily Ferenbach, Hello Sunshine
  • Sonia Gambaro, 3Pas Studios
  • Matthew Hensley, Magical Elves
  • Liz Kelly, Disney
  • Elly Lachman, Warner Bros.
  • Patrick Magill, Netflix
  • Laurel Pérez, Warner Bros.
  • Jay Roewe, HBO
  • Kristi Shuton, Disney
  • Jared Tobyne, CBS
  • Yvette Urbina, Warner Media
  • Victoria Vargas, CBS

ABOUT THE COMMITTEE:

The Latino Committee was created as a networking group to advance career and job opportunities for Latino DGA members by improving craft skills, networking, and making Latinos better known to the Hollywood creative community.


DGA Members click here to view the summit.
See video highlights from this event in the gallery below.

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10/04/22-10/10/22
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A DGA Latino Committee Virtual Event