El Cine: an outsider’s look at San Antonio filmmaking

Mexican-born director Juan Carlos Hernández and Venezuelan actress/writer Tatiana Smithhart have already filmed one Spanish-language movie in San Antonio, Secuestrada (2008), and a new one, Patricia (2011), is almost done. In about three weeks, Patricia’s main actors (which include Eric del Castillo, Claudia Troyo, and Agustín Arana) will come back to finish the 20 percent of filming that’s left. Patricia is expected to premiere locally in September and nationally in November through AMC theaters.

Hernández, a veteran of Televisión Azteca and Azteca América, in partnership with Smithhart, founded Eagle Eye Productions in 2006. Their future casting ideas are unique: In January 2012, they’ll start the San Antonio-based Eagle Eye Art Academy, which will train actors with the goal of casting them in future Eagle Eye films.

“Right now we’re making Spanish movies, because there is a lack of Spanish-language movies in the U.S.,” Hernández told the Current. “But eventually we’ll do English films as well.”

So, whether you’re a bilingual or English-only actor, send your info to [email protected].

Speaking of casting, director Ya’Ke Smith (whose Katrina’s Son will be shown at the Cannes Film Festival this week) is looking for a few actors to finish his first feature film, Wolf. There are exactly 11 roles still available, and they come in all shapes, forms, and ethnicities. The 15-day San Antonio shooting starts on July 15, but the deadline to submit your headshot (jpeg format under 1 MB) and resume (Word doc, PDF, or pasted into the body of the email) is May 15. So hurry, and send your info to Nikki Young at [email protected].

URBAN-15’s 5th Josiah Media Festival, an annual student short film event, will take place on July 7-9 at the URBAN-15 studio. You have until June 1 to send your submissions in the narrative, documentary, animation, and experimental categories. Download forms and guidelines from urban15.org, and mail your movie to URBAN-15 Group, 2500 S Presa, San Antonio, TX 78210.

Meanwhile, California’s 7th Annual Topanga Film Festival is also accepting submissions in the following categories: Shorts (2-25 minutes; drama, documentary, comedy, experimental); Feature-length Documentaries (45-100 minutes, a new category); Dance Short Films Showcase; Online Smartphone Competition (shorts shot entirely on Smartphones); and Youth Salon Showcase (up to age 17, with no length specified). The regular deadline is May 31, and late deadline is June 15. Go to topangafilmfestival.com for submission details.


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