As an entertainment freelance journalist, I have attended more then my share of lectures on filmmaking and the entertainment industry, however none have ever left such a riveting impression as the lecture I attended at the 10th Annual Los Angeles Latino International Film Festival. The Los Angeles Latino International Film Festival (LALIFF) is an annual preeminent film event that showcases the world’s best Latino filmmakers, attracting the biggest Latino talent in entertainment.
As a long-time fan of horror films and supernatural thrillers, when I heard that a Latin writer/director/producer was scheduled to lecture at LALIFF, who also happens to be the top expert on “real-life” supernatural phenomena, I almost fell out of my chair.
Christopher Chacon is a writer, director and executive producer for film and television, best known for his TV drama, “PSI Factor”, a paranormal-thriller series that ran for 88 episodes and starred Dan Aykroyd, Michael Moriarity and Matt Frewer. While Chacon’s creative work in the entertainment industry is refreshing, imaginative and often spine-tingling, it is his unique expertise and life experiences that makes him stand significantly apart from all others. Chacon is one of the world’s foremost authorities on paranormal and supernatural phenomena, mysticism and the occult. And I am not just talking as an academic expert, but rather as a worldwide “field explorer” of these elusive phenomena, encountering first-hand experiences that would leave the majority of us traumatized for life.
A natural in front of an audience, although Chacon’s appearance is young and edgy, it was immediately clear that he speaks from a vast knowledge that can only be attained from a life-time of real-world experience. From the moment his lecture began, his intense look and showmanship commanding the room, the surrounding ambient sounds outside the lecture-tent eerily disappeared plunging the setting into silence...we could have heard a pin drop. This was of course due to a combination of Chacon’s presence and the riveting subject matter.
Chacon grew up in a small central California farming community, his family ancestry and childhood deeply rooted in Mayan mysticism, thanks to his grandmother. He got his start in entertainment as an Illusionist/Magician, whose critically acclaimed performances took him to international venues. His love of theater and filmmaking also began as a young boy, making full-length independent films and directing stage productions by the time he entered college.
Years later, just as Chacon was making the leap from stage to television, he was recruited by The Office of Scientific Investigation and Research (O.S.I.R.), an elite private agency that conducts scientific research on “anomalous phenomena” or to the layperson, “paranormal and supernatural phenomena”. While with O.S.I.R., Chacon went on thousands of cases all over the world dealing with every type of phenomena imaginable, including poltergeists, alien abductions, demonic possessions, encounters with strange creatures, psychic phenomena such as psychokinesis, precognition and astral projection, miracles and divine manifestations, anomalous phenomena such as crops circles, raining worms and tears in the space-time continuum. In addition to being an O.S.I.R. Operative, Chacon was also a member of a variety of prestigious scientific organizations, including, The Society for Scientific Exploration, The American Association for the Advancement of Sciences, The Center for Science Education and The Federation of American Scientists, just to name a few. Now recognized as one of the world’s foremost authorities on the “paranormal”, Chacon has been featured on hundreds of radio and television shows, including “NBC Network News”, “Unsolved Mysteries” and “National Geographic Explorer”.
Spellbound at the edge of my seat, Chacon described some of the extraordinary phenomena he has encountered, many of the experiences redefining our presumed understanding and expectations of how these phenomena supposedly function. The disturbingly real phenomena Chacon has dealt with gives a whole new meaning to the catch phrase, “shock and awe”. Accompanying his descriptions of these mind-boggling phenomena were fascinating visuals. In addition to lecturing about phenomena, Chacon spoke about the world’s ongoing fascination surrounding “paranormal and supernatural themes” and how they defy the “presumed” cyclic trends that some say exist in film and television. Chacon covered a variety of subjects in entertainment, from the importance of writers and directors maintaining the continuity of the “phenomenon dynamics” in a story, to the psycho-social and cultural aspects of audiences who are fans of the horror/thriller genre. He spoke about how the revolution in independent films and tighter budgets has brought a tidal wave of supernatural thrillers. Chacon conveyed his excitement over the fact that the work of so many veteran and new up-and-coming Latin writers and directors are being recognized, re-inventing film storytelling with new and imaginative creations.
While Chacon is no longer with the O.S.I.R., he continues to be inundated with referrals of cases dealing with everything from black magic curses to Close Encounter experiences. In addition, Chacon travels the world on special metaphysical expeditions, exploring his privileged access to ancient mysticism and the occult.
Chacon brings with him a treasure trove of extraordinary information and experiences, having spent decades investigating legitimate phenomena with state-of-the-art science, followed by many more years exploring as a true “paranormal adventurer”, embracing metaphysics and ancient mysticism. The combination of grounded scientific analysis, coupled with open-minded metaphysical exploration allows Chacon an astonishing perspective unparalleled anywhere in the world. Add to this, his imaginative writing/directing talents, and you have one of the most exciting Latin filmmakers in the industry.
While he spends every weekend traveling abroad to deal with extraordinary paranormal disturbances, Chacon’s weekdays are filled with writing and developing of new film and television projects, intertwining his experiences and expertise into his creations. He and Josefina Lopez (Real Women Have Curves), who also introduced Chacon for the lecture, have co-written a spectacular fun-filled feature project that embraces their Latin cultures against a backdrop of the supernatural. Chacon is repped by Michael Shlain at Marty Shapiro Management.
I am originally from San Diego, my family from Mexicali and Mexico City. I am a graduate from San Diego State University with a major in Journalism. Reprinted from LationLA (www.lationla.com).