Life through a lens
You’re a producer/creative director with New Horizons Film & Video. What does that mean?
In Indie terms it means I get to throw the trash out. For the most part I’m an all-around filmmaker that does everything. Matt De Jesús is the owner of New Horizons Film & Video, he’s a knowledgeable and creative filmmaker that began his company in 1982. We are a full-service production company that offers expertise in creative, production, and editing services. We produce commercials, documentaries, music videos and feature films.
What’s the allure for you to make indie films?
Not having to go by a formula that consists of sensationalism and commercialism. I’m consciously able to make my own creative decisions and express myself politically and artistically by making comments that are relevant to current issues, which sadly happen to be issues that began decades if not centuries ago.
What drives your philosophy of filmmaking?
The psychology and sociology of human beings, injustices, hope, faith, the past, the present, the future and we as a society evolving mentally to a higher conscience that will allow us to make our own conscience history and be proud of it.
What are the current trends in your industry that make it easier for you to produce films?
Technology! Making a film is not as complicated and expensive as it was decades ago. Our company recently purchased a new camera called the Red Digital Cinema Camera. This camera has 35mm quality image, 35mm optics, and instant digital workflow at HD prices.
What barriers make it hard?
Finishing up a client’s video to pay the bills while trying to write my own script and come up with creative ideas.
Tell us about your current project.
No Todo Es Color De Rosa. It’s a documentary about the myths of the U.S. that many people hear about in Latin America. This documentary is to make people, in particular Latin Americans, aware of the reality that is happening in the United States, especially in Arizona: a state where crossing the border is only the beginning of a turbulent journey. All the funding has come from our own pockets. However, I am looking for some external funding to finally finish this long-awaited documentary.
Is the film industry still male dominated? Is that changing?
I think what’s changing is the acknowledgement towards women. There have always been women in the film industry, such as Ida Lupino, Lois Weber, Frances Marion, Mary Pickford, Dorothy Arzner to name just a few. In the “start-up” era of film, women worked at every level of the filmmaking process. They also wrote half of all the films released in the 1920s. In fact, women worked on equal levels in Hollywood long before they even had the right to vote.
Do you see Arizona as becoming a hub of the film industry?
¡Clarines! (¡Claro!) Just give it some time it will come around.
What movie would you make if you had the money?
I’m currently working on a script that is about the animosity that goes on within the Latino community; from recent immigrants to later generations who are already citizens. Its working title is Raices. I could imagine Edward James Olmos playing one of the lead characters.
Ever want to get in front of the camera?
Yes, to check the lens and make sure it’s clean.