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Latin America: New Talent Emerges Behind the Screen

Producers, directors and screenwriters rep some of the most interesting pics emerging from Latin America. Chosen for this year’s Latin Ameruca: Up Next, the 10 producers or directors – sometimes both will be the subject of a round table at Ventana Sur on Wednesday.

CESAR ACEVEDO

Director-writer, Colombia

Acevedo, 27, caught the eye of Burning Blue producer Diana Bustamante with two evocative shorts: “Los pasos del agua” and “La campana.” Burning Blue produced Acevedo’s feature debut, “La tierra y la sombra,” a family drama set on a sugarcane-blighted farm, now in post.

DIANA ALMEIDA

Producer, Brazil

Almeida’s first feature as a producer, Daniel Ribeiro’s “The Way He Looks,” is Brazil’s foreign-language Oscar entry. While working for a journalism degree at Sao Paulo U., Almeida began producing shorts. Films Boutique has sold the drama to 24 territories.

ABNER BENAIM

Helmer-Scribe, Panama

Popular on Variety

Benaim wrote and helmed documentary “Invasion,” Panama’s first-ever foreign-language film Oscar submission. His first fiction feature, 2009’s “Chance,” was a hit Just like “Chance,” “Invasion” outperformed expectations, luring a record 50,000 admissions in the country of 3.5 million. Philippa Kowarsky of Cinephil handles international sales.

FELIPE BRAGA

Director-Writer-Producer, Brazil

Braga wrote the Portuguese-language version of Stephen Daldry’s Rome Fest winner “Trash.” He is now penning actor Wagner Moura’s directorial debut, “Marighella.” Based out of Losbragas Productions, with Alice Braga (no relation) and Rita Moraes, he’s also a presence on Brazil’s digital scene, directing “Latitudes,” an Internet series-cum-feature, and “Life Outside the Fields,” a Web series about soccer superstar Neymar Jr.

ALVARO BRECHNER

Director-Writer, Uruguay

Brechner has made only two features, and both repped Uruguay in Oscar’s foreign-language film race. His debut, “Bad Day to Go Fishing,” world preemed in Cannes’ Critics’ Week and won more than 30 festival awards. Follow-up pic “Mr. Kaplan” is a critical and commercial success in Uruguay, still playing in theaters since its August debut. Brechner is now financing two pics. Memento Films Intl. has sold “Mr. Kaplan” to 15-plus territories.

AUGUSTO MATTE

Producer, Chile

Succeeding Bruno Bettati at Chile’s Jirafa Films, Matte has opened up the Chilean shingle to genre and animated pics with Alejandro Fernandez Almendras’ end-of-the-world love story “The Gray Beyond,” co-produced with Kiki Sugino’s Wa Entertainment in Japan; and German Acuna’s 2D animated magic world adventure “Levisterio.” Films from Christopher Murray and Marcela Said complete an exciting 2015 slate.

MATIAS MOSTEIRIN

Producer, Argentina

Mosteirin, based out of Buenos Aires’ K&S Films, is now taking Argentine film to another level, scaling up in production values via powerful international alliances on Ricardo Darin thriller “Seventh Floor” and foreign-language Oscar entry “Wild Tales,” bought by Sony Pictures Classics for the U.S. More key international co-productions look likely to follow.

GIANCARLO NASI

Producer, Chile

Nasi structured the Chile-France-Germany-Greece-Colombia co-production “Nobody Boy,” from Fernando Guzzoni (“Dog Flesh”), which is set for a spring shoot. “In the Shade of the Trees,” from Matias Rojas (“Roots”), is set up as a Chile-Germany co-production. He’s also co-managing Chile Factory, an omnibus feature project for Cannes’ Directors’ Fortnight.

MARIA ANGELES PALACIOS

Producer, Ecuador

Palacio’s first feature, Javier Andrade’s “Porcelain Horse,” was Ecuador’s Oscar candidate last year. She has produced and directed a string of docs, including “Patrulla Legal” and “Via Ecuador.” She is taking Andrade’s next pic, “Julio” — about the last two tragic years of Ecuadorian singer Julio Jaramillo — to the Ventana Sur market.

ALONSO RUIZPALACIOS

Director-Writer, Mexico

Three misfits — a rebel teen, his college slacker brother and larky best friend — cruise Mexico City, as a students strike happens nearby. From such a slender premise, Ruizpalacios crafts “Gueros,” an inventive black-and-white slice of life tale that won Berlin’s first feature prize. He’s now prepping darkly comedic heist movie “Museo,” a step up in scale.

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