March 5, 2004

Latino Filmmakers Score on “The Short List”

Five award-winning Latino filmmakers are among the 42 filmmakers featured this season on “The Short List,” the showcase for international short film produced in SDSU’s Production Center for Documentary and Drama.

“Tempus Fugit,” a drama by SDSU senior film student, Miguel Navarro, airs Mar. 7 at 9:30 p.m. on the showcase. The film was shot in San Diego and depicts a solitary office worker and his imaginative way of coping with his programmed life. Originally from Colombia, Navarro was awarded a 2004 Eastman Kodak Product Grant in January for “Tempus Fugit.” The jury reviewed all of films in this season’s “Short List” and commended Navarro for his “tightly edited and poig-nantly acted comment on the routine rigors of urban life.” The film is receiving its world television premiere on “The Short List.”

“Uno Más Uno Menos,” a docudrama by Alvaro Pas-tore and Antonio Naharro of Madrid, Spain, airs Mar. 14 at 9:30 p.m. The film stars Naharro’s 18-year-old sister, Lourdes, who was born with Down’s Syndrome. In the film she befriends Ana (Ana Gracia), a TV journalist who is developing a “human interest” story. Their relationship reveals each woman’s life and hopes. “As a plea for tolerance and understanding, this complex film got our attention immediately,” said “Short List” executive producer Jack Ofield. The film is receiving its North American television premiere on “The Short List.”

“The Man Without a Head,” a musical drama by Argen-tina’s Juan Solanas, airs Mar. 28 at 9:30 p.m. The film combines animation with live action to depict a man’s love for a beautiful young woman and his desire to recreate himself in a new, magical form —even to replacing his head—in order to be worthy of her. With choreography reminiscent of Fred and Ginger and dazzling special effects, this innovative film captured the Jury Prize at the 2003 Cannes Film Festival. The “Short List” jury also awarded Solanas a 2004 Kodak Product Grant in January. The film is receiving its North American television premiere on “The Short List.”

“Russian Lessons,” a thriller by José-Antonio Bonet of Madrid, airs Apr. 11 at 9:30 p.m. The 18-minute film stars Luis Tosar as a lonely Madrid bachelor whose Personals ad draws a phone call from a mysterious Russian beauty played by Poland’s Svetlana Alvizkaya. Expert night shooting, a taut script and an evocative soundtrack recall the sophisticated film noir movies of the 1940s and won Bonet the film Best Foreign Short at the New York Independent Film and Video Festival. Bonet also received a 2004 Kodak Product Grant in January from the “Short List” jury. The film is receiving its world television premiere on “The Short List.”

“The Short List” has been airing for 11 seasons on Cox Channel 4 and is distributed nationally by American Public Television to public TV stations. As the only weekly short film showcase on U.S. television, the film has racked up regional Emmy Awards and won a loyal audience attracted by the original content and stylish production values. The series is produced by Jack Ofield and Helen-Maria Erawan in association with Cox Communications and Eastman Kodak, with additional support from the Thomas E. Ackerman Foundation and Las Patronas.

Ofield and Erawan annually attend dozens of international film festivals in search of the select group of films that comprise “The Short List” each season. “Competition is keen,” said Ofield. “The fact that three Latino filmmakers in the same season were selected for our annual Kodak Product Grant Awards speaks volumes about their training and talent.”

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