LOS CABOS, Mexico — Latam Pictures’ Mineko Mori, one of Mexico’s best-regarded distributors, is making her feature debut as a screenwriter with the upcoming “#Lady Rancho.”
The film is produced by Mori and Alex Garcia, founder of Latam Pictures.
To aid in the process, Mori enlisted the help of co-writer Molo Alcocer, a promising young screenwriter who trained at the American Film Institute now living in Mexico.
“I had just read a script of his I fell in love with,” Mori said of her writing partner in a conversation with Variety at the Los Cabos Festival. “I had written this story so I called him to do the screenplay. It was a wonderful creative experience for me.”
The film turns on a spoiled 21 year-old girl, still living at home, who has unlimited access to daddy’s credit card. With too much money and not enough sense, Camila constantly finds herself at odds with authority, but try as her mother might to set her on the straight-and-narrow, dad’s hands-off attitude has led to an attitude of entitlement that’s hard to kick.
After a video of a drunken run-in with the law makes its way to social media, dad finally gets on board and, along with mom, decides that the best thing for their daughter would be a particular type of “rehab.” Under the auspices of a family vacation the three visit their ranch, but when Camila awakes from a mimosa hangover she finds her parents have left her in the care of the ranch hands, under strict instructions that if she doesn’t work, she doesn’t eat.
According to Mori, the goal with the film was to produce something for an age-group of Mexican cinemagoers that haven’t had much to choice in content produced out of Mexico.
“In Mexico there is very little production for teens,” she said. “I wanted to write a story I thought could connect to not just teens, but adults, parents of kids, a wider range of people.”
The question then is, is this a career change, or a career expansion?
“I will still be distributing,” she clarified, “but I am exploring getting more into the creative side,” added the experienced distributor, who has held senior executive positions at Televisa’s Videocine and Paramount Pictures in Mexico.
She added: “Having read so many scripts throughout my career and being involved with productions on the executive production level, I have a lot of experience to bring to the table. I like to explore new things and I get restless sometimes.”
The film is tentatively scheduled for a Jan. 4 release in Mexico, where Corazón Films is taking care of distribution. Pantelion Films is handling U.S. distribution.
John Hopewell contributed to this article