The program begins with Una Noche con deadCenter Nov 11.
With recent productions filming in the state and the downtown prominence of Prairie Surf Media, Oklahoma’s film and TV industry is on the rise. But deadCenter Film has been at the center of OKC’s film scene for over 20 years, and it wants to make sure every part of the city is included in the film boom with its new year-round program, Continuum.
The first in the series is Una Noche con deadCenter Film, which will take place Nov. 11 from 5 to 7:30 p.m. at the Yale Theater in Historic Capitol Hill. The showing, in partnership with Oklahoma City Young Latino Professionals, will present two Sundance-selected short films from Latin American directors curated by deadCenter shorts programer Camila Chaves Rojas.
One of the films, Huella, directed by Gabriela Ortega, is a fiction piece about a woman who uses dance to deal with grief and generational trauma in the wake of her grandmother’s death. “The way it shows through dance this way of her trying to understand her past, and how it affects the present, I think is something that anybody can relate to, but it also does talk about cultural elements in the Latino community,” Chaves Rojas said.
The other short, We Are Here, directed by Doménica Castro and Constanza Castro, captures real stories of young people who immigrated undocumented to the United States. “It is an emotional piece,” Chaves Rojas said.
“I felt that my experiences were reflected through (both) films that I selected, and I really wanted the opportunity to share these films with Latinos in my community that I felt would enjoy it and find some kind of relatability to the content we’re showing them,” she said.
deadCenter chose the Yale Theater not just for its beautiful space but its location within Historic Capitol Hill. “Capitol Hill has become like a hub for this Latino community rising up,” Chaves Rojas said.
The nonprofit organized the event with Oklahoma City Young Latino Professionals as a chance to highlight filmmaking as a career path as the industry grows in OKC. Visitors will have the opportunity to network with deadCenter and local filmmakers. There will also be a speakers panel featuring Chaves Rojas, deadCenter executive director Cacky Poarch and director of programming Sara Thompson.
Earlier in the year, deadCenter presented a film series showcasing movies chosen by women and nonbinary film programmers. “It is rare in the film industry to have women programmers presenting films like these,” Chaves Rojas said. “I think that opens up more of a conversation and more of a safe space for people to feel like they are reflected in these films, and that there are people making selections in these films that look like them.”
deadCenter plans to continue the Continuum program to amplify voices across OKC leading up to its 2023 festival. The program is funded by the Culture & Community iFund grant program from the Oklahoma City Community Foundation.
Una Noche con deadCenter is free to attend, and you can reserve a spot through its survey.