New 3-Part PBS Film Anthology Series ‘THE LATINO EXPERIENCE’ Features All-New Short Fiction and Nonfiction Films Premieres July 6 on PBS SoCal and July 7 on KCET
This Showcase of Short Films Exploring Identity and Culture
of the Latino Community in the U.S. and Abroad
Los Angeles, Calif. – June 15, 2021 – PBS SoCal and KCET, Southern California’s flagship PBS station that is home of the entire PBS schedule as well as the home for award-winning, original local content, have announced the premiere of the new short fiction and nonfiction film anthology series THE LATINO EXPERIENCE. Featuring 13 original films made by filmmakers working across genres, the shorts explore a wide range of experiences, perspectives and styles to highlight the rich diversity of the Latino/a/x community across the United States and Puerto Rico. Five of the films were made by Southern California-based filmmakers, with two of the short films “Body and Spirit in Times of Pandemic” and “The Daily War” taking place in/around Los Angeles. THE LATINO EXPERIENCE premieres the first of three episodes on Tues., July 6 at 9 p.m. on PBS SoCal and Wed., July 7 at 9 p.m. on KCET.
Of the 13 short films included in THE LATINO EXPERIENCE, five were created by notable Southern California filmmakers Alejandra López (“The Blue Cape”), Andrés Caballero (“Body and Spirit in Times of Pandemic”), Natalia C. Bell (“Pasos de Valor”), Karla Legaspy (“The Daily War”) and Andres Rovira (“Noche Buena”) showcasing various stories that reflect the many lived experiences of Latinos today including a Guatemalan immigrant truck driver during the COVID-19 pandemic, a veteran coping with the challenges of PTSD and a family struggling to survive after Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico.
All 13 curated films for THE LATINO EXPERIENCE were selected from entries received by PBS following a call for submissions in August 2020. The user-submitted stories and contributions were chosen by a panel of experienced filmmakers. The shorts received funding support as well as a national broadcast as part of the series.
As part of PBS SoCal’s commitment to support and present diverse content created by a broad array of storytellers, THE LATINO EXPERIENCE presents a compilation of shorts showcasing the wide-ranging talent and complexity within the Latino community. From dramas to documentaries, comedies to magical realism, the narrative and scripted shorts showcase an exciting lineup of creative talent, both in front of and behind the camera.
THE LATINO EXPERIENCE is slated to air on stations across the country on Tuesdays in July, with the Southern California-based filmmakers’ shorts scheduled as follows on local PBS stations (*subject to change):
“The Blue Cape” – Tues., July 6 at 9 p.m. on PBS SoCal and Wed., July 7 at 9 p.m. on KCET
Set in hurricane-ravaged Puerto Rico two months after Maria hit the island, ten-year-old Junior (Yanniel A. Arce Rivera) is summoned by his mother to search for the medicine his grandfather so desperately needs. To embark on his journey, Junior wraps himself in a cape made from the blue tarp that covers his roof. Written, directed and produced by Alejandra López. Produced by María José Delgado.
“Body and Spirit in Times of Pandemic” – Tues., July 13 at 9 p.m. on PBS SoCal and Wed., July 14 at 9 p.m. on KCET
Edwin Siguenza is a Guatemalan immigrant truck driver and pastor of a Latino Evangelical church in Los Angeles. When the pandemic hits, Edwin has to navigate the risks of being an essential worker while attending to the needs of his congregation and the pressure to keep the church open. Directed and produced by Andrés Caballero.
“Pasos de Valor” – Tues., July 13 at 9 p.m. on PBS SoCal and Wed., July 14 at 9 p.m. on KCET
The film tells the story of Val (Nathalie Carvalho), a pregnant MBA student whose due date and final exam are in conflict. Determined to create opportunity for her Mexican American family, Val takes the exam despite her professor’s refusal to make accommodations. Written, directed and produced by Natalia C. Bell, the film is inspired by the director’s own birth story.
“The Daily War” – Tues., July 20 at 9 p.m. on PBS SoCal and Wed., July 21 at 9 p.m. on KCET
A co-production with Latino Public Broadcasting (LPB), the film is the story of a veteran (Adelina Anthony) and her son, who struggle to make ends meet. When a job opportunity presents itself, it ends up triggering her PTSD. Directed and produced by Karla Legaspy. Co-produced and written by Adelina Anthony.
“Noche Buena” – Tues., July 20 at 9 p.m. on PBS SoCal and Wed., July 21 at 9 p.m. on KCET
This film takes place on Christmas Eve as a dysfunctional Cuban family gathers around the dinner table. Caro (Erica Adams) struggles to get through the night as everyone grapples with political correctness, current events and the incessant battle between left and right. As resentment escalates into verbal and literal diarrhea, they uncover hard truths about themselves —all before the ﬂan. Written, directed and produced by Andres Rovira. Also produced by and starring Ray Tezanos.
All three episodes from THE LATINO EXPERIENCE will stream simultaneously with broadcast and be available on all station-branded PBS platforms, including PBS.org and the PBS Video app, available on iOS, Android, Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, Android TV, Samsung Smart TV and Chromecast.
Bill Gardner and Wendy Llinas are Executives in Charge for PBS for THE LATINO EXPERIENCE.
Join the conversation on social media using #TheLatinoExperience and #PBSSoCal
About PBS SOCAL and KCET
PBS SoCal and KCET are both part of the donor-supported community institution, the Public Media Group of Southern California. PBS SoCal is the flagship PBS station for diverse people across California and delivers content and experiences that inspire, inform and educate. PBS SoCal offers the full slate of beloved PBS programs including MASTERPIECE, NOVA, PBS NewsHour, FRONTLINE, and a broad library of documentary films with works from Ken Burns; as well as educational content including PBS KIDS programs like DANIEL TIGER’S NEIGHBORHOOD and CURIOUS GEORGE. KCET showcases the best of PBS and is a leading source for arts, culture, and news in Southern California. Through innovative storytelling, KCET explores and expresses our dynamic local communities helping residents understand and connect with the region's diverse communities and ideas. For additional information about both KCET and PBS SoCal productions, web-exclusive content, programming schedules and community events, please visit kcet.org and pbssocal.org KCET Originals and PBS programming are available to stream on the FREE PBS App on iOS and Android devices, Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Android TV, Samsung Smart TV, and Chromecast. KCET is also available to watch live on YouTube TV.