Assistant Director

I’ve worked with Gabriella Moses and Lissette Feliciano (see “Cupid Academy”) on several art-heavy shoots, typically with one of us as director and the other two helping make the visuals come to life.  This time around I served as Gabby’s Assistant Director, to take a larger role in organizing and carrying out the shoot.  Las Mañanitas is the story of a young Dominican-American girl about to hold her Quinceanerra in 1961, struggling with the tangled issues of identity, religion, and womanhood when all of a sudden the Virgin Mary appears to her in a piece of fried cheese.

The magical realism really jumps off the page and was right up my alley, so I had to be apart of it.  We shot with a very large crew and dedicated cast on 35mm film over 2 weeks in Manhattan and Staten Island.  For our busiest party scenes, I orchestrated over 60 professionals and extras in what was a truly thrilling and rewarding experience.  Our Producer George Itzhak and the production team was truly top notch, with many people wearing multiple hats to get everything done.

From picture cars, a vintage coke machine to perfectly photoshopped film magazines, vintage dresses, impeccable hair and makeup, borrowed cameras, to the very pots and pans in the kitchen, every effort was taken to maintain the period look and our DP Zach Kuperstein did a marvelous job capturing it all.  I look forward to sharing this personal and evocative film when Gabby’s put all the pieces together.

Watch the Trailer above (edited along with the film by the incredible Joanna Naugle) or Check out the film’s website for updates:

Images courtesy of Gabriella Moses, Lisa Iacono, and myself.