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Filmmaker Spotlight: Interview with Director Rene Rhi of "Bordando La Frontera"

As part of our monthly NewFilmmakers Los Angeles feature, we caught up with Director Rene Rhi of the film, Bordando La Frontero to talk about her latest project, goals and the lessons she's learned while making the film. Get to know Rhi and catch her screening at Sunset Gower Studios.

Tell us a little bit about your project and how long you’ve been working on it. 

Our project is inspired by an incident that happened in Arizona a few years ago.  A woman was traveling with her 9-year old son in a remote area in Arizona near the US-Mexico border when they fell off a cliff and landed 300 feet from the road.  The woman was pinned inside the vehicle and badly injured.  The boy crawled out and walked for hours looking for help and ran into an undocumented immigrant crossing the border.  The man, knowing that he was going to be arrested and deported, followed the boy to the accident and comforted him, gave him his jacket and food.  He stayed with the boy and mom and made a small fire until the following the day when people drove by and called the authorities. .

The movie was shot in Matamoros, Mexico and Brownsville, Texas in 2010 and was completed in December 0f 2011.  I have been working on it for almost 2 years.

Is there anyone you'd like to thank for helping out with this film?

My family for all their support, my classmates for all their work and all the people that helped us make this film.

How does it feel to have your film part of the NewFilmmakers Screening at Sunset Gower Studios?

We are all very excited to be part of the NewFilmmakers Screening at Sunset Gower Studios. I’ve attended several screenings from some of my USC classmates and it’s a wonderful event and a great venue for aspiring filmmakers to showcase their work.

What inspires you?

My family, friends, kindness, love, music, art, so many things can have an effect on inspiration.

Who are your influences and who do you admire?

I like people that do films that touch the human spirit, inspirational and entertaining at the same time. One of my favorite films is “Life is Beautiful” by Roberto Benigni.

What lessons have you learned from the industry so far?

The film industry is not an easy industry. Those of us without connections have had to struggle and work on the trenches for many years hoping that we rise slowly through the ranks and can someday be able to make our own projects.  One of the most important things that I’ve learned in the industry is to be persistent and don’t get discouraged.

If you could collaborate with anybody, who would it be?

So many talented people to collaborate with, I would enjoy very much collaborating with two people from my home state in Mexico “Tamaulipas” – Alejandro Monteverde and Eduardo Verastegui.  They made a beautiful film called “Bella” and they are currently in post-production for their second project called “Little Boy”.

What is the toughest experience you've ever had to overcome?

The loss of a dear childhood friend.

What is the best piece of advice someone has given to you?

There are no shortcuts in life.  You must work hard for what you want, be tenacious and you will accomplish your goals. But more than anything, enjoy what you are doing – From my father.

What advice would you give to new filmmakers starting out in the industry?

Don't be afraid to express your ideas and stories.   Many people will criticize your work, others will like it.   The important thing is to keep creating and learning.   Study hard and be respectful to your classmates and professors.  They will help you and guide you throughout career.  Travel as much as you can and learn from other cultures. It will broaden your perspective as a filmmaker and make you a better person.   Learn to be patient with people and be courteous. Surround yourself with people that bring the best in you and challenge you.  You will have ups and downs, moments of doubt and times when you question everything, not just in filmmaking but also in your lives. Don't be afraid to ask for support from your friends and family, they'll make a huge difference, trust me.   Finally, never get discouraged.  Do what makes you happy.  Enjoy it!   You will reach your goals if you keep a positive attitude

Where can we expect to see you next?

Currently working on pre-production on two projects that we hope to shoot in 2013.

Let our readers know where they can find more information about you and your projects.

Anything else you'd like to add?

Just want to thank everyone at the NewFilmmakers Program for giving us the opportunity to showcase our work.

For more information, visit:

About the Author

Formerly an editor at Demand Media, writer at Citysearch, The Examiner, LA Youth Newspaper and proofreader at The Los Angeles Daily News, Christy Buena decided to start Disarray Magazine because she missed writing what she wanted. From hiring writers, to contacting publicists and making assignments, Christy is responsible for the editorial strategy of Disarray Magazine. Get to know the team of talented contributors.
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