Salt Lake City, UT Make room, Sundance: there’s a new film festival in town.
Sol Dance Film Fiesta 2007’s groundbreaking three-day event will screen independent films by Latino and Native American filmmakers. Sol Dance will pre-sent from January 21-23 at the new Dolce’s Zermatt Resort and Spa in Midway, Utah, just 20 minutes down the road from the Sundance strip.
Sol Dance is dedicated to screening feature films, documentaries, and shorts by filmmakers whose lack of funds, resources, and other amenities have not stopped them from pursuing their passion for filmmaking. “This year is a celebration of Latin and Native American filmmakers,” said Elia Esparza, Sol Dance Co-Founder, a writer and former editor of Latin Heat and Estylo magazines. “The response has been so positive, and we are excited about unveiling our future plans.”
Esparza, a contributor to the New York Post, says she envisions Sol Dance as an important home for Latino and Native Americans to compete, sell, and distribute.
Cristina Castro, CEO of Your Great Ideas, Inc., a Latino marketing and media agency and co-founder of Sol Dance, is spearheading the marketing and business development. “Every time I’ve been to Sundance there has been a missing link,” Castro said. “There seems to be a cultural disconnect. We need more films made by Latin Americans and Native Americans”.
Sol Dance will provide an added attraction to the 60,000 global participants already in the area. “We will share the same mountain and dates as Sundance and Slamdance and add an extra window onto the world of film,” said Virginia Barreto-Applen, Nicaraguan born writer, director and executive producer at Tattoo Pictures. “Whether you are of Aztec, Maya, Inca, Cherokee, Sioux, or Cree descent, Sol Dance recognizes that we, the indigenous peoples of the Americas, are all one nation. And we have stories to tell.”
Venezuelan born film writer/director, Betty Kaplan will give the keynote address at the industry luncheon, “Latinos in Hollywood’s Cross Hairs,” on Tuesday, January 23rd. “I want to open a discourse on what Latinos want to see and how to reach us,” says Kaplan. In 1994, Kaplan directed her first major Hollywood studio film, “Of Love and Shadows,” starring Antonio Banderas and Jennifer Connelly. This thriller about Chile’s brutal Pinochet government, released by Miramax Films and Disney, received both critical acclaim and audience approval.
Salt Lake City businessman, Enrique Sosa, principal of Salt Lake City-based new-media company eFuerza, has embraced Sol Dance as its premier sponsor. There, Sosa intends to introduce his lifestyle company, SingleLatina.com.
Xenon Pictures will present a screening of two documentaries, “Los Lonely Boys” and the Reggaeton “Straight Out of Puerto Rico,” along with the feature film “7 Días.” The Warner Bros. cult classic, “Boulevard Nights,” will screen as part of Sunday’s opening night events and has generated excitement among Utah’s car club aficionados. Esparza says there are several indie screening surprises.
Sol Dance opens on Sunday, January 21st with a full day of screenings, live music at the Zermatt’s Pavilion, and is open to the public. The next two days are packed with industry screenings and events. Utah’s Mariachi Zabala and Sacramento’s beloved musician, Aswut Rodriguez, a Latino-Native American, will perform with his band.