Latino Public Broadcasting grants include support for ‘Farmer’s Wife,’ ‘Reportero’ filmmakers

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“Latin History for Morons: The Road to Broadway” details John Leguizamo’s attempt to cover 3,000 years of Latino history in a Broadway show.

New production grants from Latino Public Broadcasting include support for the latest film from David Sutherland, director of The Farmer’s Wife and Kind-Hearted Woman.

Sutherland’s Semper Fidelis (w.t.) follows the efforts of U.S. Marine veteran Elizabeth Perez to reunite her family after her husband’s deportation to Mexico.

Filmmaker Bernardo Ruiz (Reportero, The Graduates/Los Graduados) also received funding for Harvest Season, which examines the importance of vineyard workers and small producers in California’s Napa Valley over one agricultural year.

The projects are among 11 receiving support from LPB’s 2017 Public Media Content Fund for Latino-themed programs, series and digital projects.

Sandie Viquez Pedlow, LPB executive director, said the grantees “truly represent the richness of our Latino culture.”

Proposals are reviewed by public media professionals, station programmers, independent filmmakers, academics and executives from national funding organizations.

Other films receiving grants:

  • Councilwoman, profiling Carmen Castillo, a hotel housekeeper from the Dominican Republic who wins a city council election in Providence, R.I.;
  • Decade of Fire, exploring how racism and neglect contributed to fires that consumed the South Bronx in the 1970s;
  • Hispaniola, which uses magical realism and cinema verite to tell the stories of families affected by the Dominican Republic’s Supreme Court decision to strip citizenship from Dominicans of Haitian descent;
  • Latin History for Morons: The Road to Broadway, capturing comic John Leguizamo’s quest to present 3,000 years of Latino history in a 90-minute show;
  • Los Hermanos/The Brothers, profiling two musicians born in Havana but separated by geopolitics whose dream of touring together is complicated by Fidel Castro’s death and Donald Trump’s election; and
  • The Musical Legacy of Sheila E. (w.t.), a look at the life of the child prodigy who performed onstage alongside her father, Latin Jazz great Pete Escovedo, from the age of 5.

Digital projects, which will appear on

  • Crossing, a supernatural dramatic short about a family trapped in a state of mourning over their son, who died attempting to cross from Mexico into the U.S. through the Rio Grande;
  • Ode to Pablo, a short drama about a gay Latin teenager who is deaf; and
  • Pigeon Man and Sparrow Kid, a short film that combines live action and 3-D–printed sequences as a father tries to explain his serious health struggles to his daughter.

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