• Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2020
HBO unveils Latinx short film competition winners 
Filmmaker Jeanette Dilone
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For the second year in a row HBO has partnered with the Official Latino Film and Arts Festival to select three films that will premiere on HBO and HBO Max in 2021. HBO’s ongoing commitment to showcase, nurture and support emerging creatives was the driving force in launching the U.S. Latinx short film competition in 2019, in an effort to support culturally inclusive films and filmmakers that represent true American diversity. Currently the 2019 winners Slipping Into Darkness, La Serenata and Pepito can be seen on HBO Max. 

Here is an overview of the selected films and filmmakers for 2020:
Princess Cut is adapted from Demetra Kareman’s stage play, Bitch Brow. Worlds collide when Teresa and Elodie, two women from opposite sides of the tracks, wind up together in an all-night laundromat. Both struggling with the expectations and pressures of impending nuptials, an unlikely friendship develops. But when one is caught in a lie, relationships unravel into bloody murder.
The film is directed by Elaine Del Valle, a native New York Latina, actress, writer, and director, whose films have garnered support from WarnerMedia 150, Sundance Institute, and HBO. Del Valle recently published her autobiographical coming-of-age story, "Brownsville Bred," as a young adult novel. It earned distinction as “Most inspirational young adult book of 2020” (International Latino Book Awards). Del Valle’s screenplay adaptation of her novel will be her next film and her first feature as a director.

1, 2, 3, ALL EYES ON ME
Ms. Leena, a loving art teacher, has her hands full with her 4th-grade class. When she takes an upset student outside to speak with him, she sees something that alarms her--a teenager is writing Xs on certain classroom doors. Things quickly unravel and Ms. Leena and her class find themselves trapped in a crisis that quickly engulfs the entire campus.
The filmmaker behind this story--1, 2, 3, All Eyes On Me--is Emil Gallardo, an award-winning Mexican-American writer/director from Los Angeles. In 2020, he was selected by HBO to their Directing Fellowship and later won Panavision’s Future Filmmaker award. 

Rizo follows an Afro-Latina actress struggling with her hair on a rough day of auditions. As she navigates the Hollywood machine, she is forced to confront her own identity, as a Latina actress who doesn’t quite fit the mold.
Rizo filmmaker Jeanette Dilone is a native New Yorker, born and raised in upper Manhattan. Since graduating from Columbia University, her acting work has spanned television, film, theater, commercials, and new media. She began her journey as a filmmaker when she wrote and directed her first short Return, which had a festival run in 2017.  Her second short, “Rizo,” debuted in 2020.

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