The Latinx House Announces the Inaugural Cohort of Its Adelante Directors Fellowship

Adelante Fellowship The Latinx House
Image courtesy of BELatina.

The Latinx House continues to deliver on its promise to support new voices in the seventh art. The initiative founded by Monica Ramirez, Alexandra Martinez Kondracke, and Olga Segura has now announced the inaugural cohort of its Adelante Directors Fellowship.

It is a collaboration with the Sundance Institute’s Women at Sundance program, Netflix, and Shondaland to select three Latina directors to participate in an innovative program that supports professional development and creates a pipeline to elevate independent filmmakers.

The Latina directors chosen for this year’s Adelante Director’s Fellowship are Cecilia Aldarondo, an award-winning director, and producer from the Puerto Rican diaspora who works at the intersection of poetics and politics; Yulene Olaizola, a prolific filmmaker originally from Mexico whose most recent film, “The Tragic Jungle,” premiered in competition at the 2020 Venice Film Festival; and Nicole Mejia, a Honduran-born recent graduate of the American Film Institute’s directing program who creates stories about the resilience of the human spirit through drama, thriller, and magical realism.

As explained by the organizations, the program will help create more opportunities behind the camera for underrepresented voices to create more honest, inclusive, and authentic narratives.

The Adelante Directors Fellowship bridges across borders to empower underrepresented creatives to take control of their own stories and develop storylines that touch on the diversity of the Latino experience.

The program will help guide the three grant recipients, who will have the opportunity to shadow an episode of a series, receive a grant to support the artist for six weeks while they pursue the track, and receive support from The Latinx House. 

In July, the Adelante Scholarship finalists will gather for a two-day orientation program in Los Angeles, guided by several industry executives, directors, and showrunners to provide a meaningful and impactful experience. In addition to Shondaland, GloNation Studios will offer shadowing opportunities as part of the program on some of its productions.

“We are incredibly excited to be announcing our three Latina finalists alongside our wonderful partners at Women at Sundance, Netflix, and Shondaland, who all recognize the importance of bringing diverse talent to the forefront,” said Olga Segura, producer, activist, entrepreneur, and co-founder of The Latinx House. “As new research highlights the lack of diversity in media – this program seeks to mend the gap and create a more sustainable pipeline of talented directors and diverse voices. We look forward to working with Cecilia Aldarondo, Yulene Olaizola, and Nicole Mejia for the inaugural year of the Adelante Directors Fellowship.”