Quincea??era Blues

Family film Alondra Smiles screens as an official selection of the 5th Annual Reel Rasquache Film Festival

By Conchita Villa
Published on LatinoLA: May 27, 2008

Quincea??era Blues

Alondra (Natalie Gomez) has a positive attitude towards life despite having lost her parents to an accident seven years ago; she is grateful for her loving grandparents (Jose V. Villa and Josefina Ortega-Villa), whom she now lives with. Alondra befriends Armando (Anthony Marquez), a nice guy she met while working at her uncle's restaurant. Unfortunately, Alondra's manipulative step-cousin Tatiana (Paloma Rodriguez) wants Armando as her date for her debutante party, and with the help of her sidekicks she keeps Armando and Alondra apart while making them believe that she's just trying to help.

The award-winning feature "Alondra Smiles" will screen at the Reel Rasquache Film Festival at the Luckman Fine Arts Complex on the campus of California State University, Los Angeles. The festival is a West Coast celebration of films that will celebrate the rich diversity of Latina/o experiences in the U.S. on all topics and in all genres, it brings together East and West Los Angeles, community and University, U.S. Latina/o independent films and the Hollywood industry.

"Alondra Smiles" recently won the Directors Gold Award at the International Family Film Festival in Hollywood and is nominated as Best First Film at the Heart of England International Film Festival. Villa Media Productions, along with an up-and-coming cast, brings this heartwarming story to life. In "Alondra Smiles," we meet Alondra, a fourteen-year-old who's planning to have a very special 15th birthday celebration, and her spoiled cousin Tatiana, who wants to ruin Alondra's plans.

Director Conchita Nora Villa says, "My family and I wanted to produce a movie that an entire family can watch together. It was also important for me to portray Latinos in a positive, non-stereotypical way."

Ms. Villa's credits include working on "Selena" and "Mi Familia/My Family" as well as producing various independent projects. After over 10 years of experience in the various facets of the film industry, she decided to team up with her brother, Producer/Writer Juan Francisco Villa, and her family to produce and finance "Alondra Smiles." This film is Ms. Villa's directorial debut.

"Alondra Smiles" will screen on June 1, 2008 at 12:00 pm. For more information and tickets visit the Reel Rasquache website at www.reelrasquache.org or call (323) 343-6600.

"Alondra Smiles" has also been selected to The Heart of England International Film Festival, (June 2008), the International Film Festival in South Africa (October 2008) and the Kids First! Film Festival. "Alondra Smiles" is currently looking for distribution. Trailer, photos and further information are available at www.villamediaprod.com and www.myspace.com/alondrasmiles.

Villa Media Productions is a family-owned and operated company. It is currently developing an "Alondra Smiles" television pilot.

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