Positive Latino Films & The Premiere Weekend Club

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Do you think there are not enough positive depictions of Latinos in the movies?

There is now a way for you and your friends to help change that situation now by actively supporting the Premiere Weekend Club. Students across America are mobilizing as part of this grass roots movement to support positive Latino movies. They are sending a message to Hollywood that there is more to Latino Culture than gang-bangers, suffering mothers, maids and drug dealers. Positive Latino films show Latinos in the true light of diversity that goes beyond stereotypes. In the new Millennium, the way to convince Hollywood to make this change is to convince Hollywood that there is money to be made in positive portrayals of Latinos. This movement is not just for Latinos and in fact there are people from all walks of life actively involved in the Premiere Weekend Club.

Over the last fifteen years, Hollywood has made an average of one Latino film a year. This is despite overwhelming evidence that a giant Latino movie-going market exists, and the fact that Latino films with universal themes and likable lead characters have consistently been profitable for Hollywood. The rise of Ricky Martin serves to further illustrate the power of the Latino market that is being ignored by Hollywood.

Many people in the Latino community have been calling on Hollywood for years to change its practices and start making more Latino films. Editorials have been written and passionate complaints have been made. However, Latinos have been left standing outside the gates of Hollywood with their protests being met with lip service and empty promises.

Latinos have been dreaming of the day when the percentage of films produced in Hollywood that are Latino projects reflect the percentage of dollars spent at the box office by Latinos. Latinos dream of the day when Hollywood will consistently present Latino characters in films as well-rounded and dynamic people, as good and complex people, and not just as stereotypes and labels. The time has come for Hollywood to portray Latinos as fire fighters, social workers, teachers, lawyers, and not just as maids, prostitutes, drug dealers and gang members. Studio executives and filmmakers need to stop perpetuating destructive and disrespectful images of Latinos. Hollywood must change and it will. The future is now and the dreams are going to become a reality in 1999.

The recently formed Premiere Weekend Club intends to change that situation. The purpose of this club is to motivate studios and production companies to go into production of several Latino films by the end of this year, and every year thereafter, and to motivate every studio and production company in Hollywood to distribute at least one Latino film a year. They will accomplish this by pledging to financially reward any production company or studio that distributes a positive Latino film. The criterion for approval is a competently made film that presents Latinos in a positive light, with universal themes and likable lead characters. The Premiere Weekend Club will consist of members who will go see any endorsed Latino film on its opening weekend. Hollywood insiders usually see the opening weekend as being the most crucial time period for a film, because it helps determine how successful the film will be at the box office

The Premiere Weekend Club is planning the mobilization of over one million moviegoers to attend any endorsed positive film on its opening weekend. This Million Moviegoer March into Hollywood is being organized with the assistance of hundreds of organizations and media outlets across the country, which have already successfully targeted millions of people in the Latino community. For example, the National Council of La Raza has a membership of over 2 million people alone. Additionally, millions members are being recruited on a grass-roots level through word-of-mouth, colleges, trade unions, schools and other community based organizations. Students are critical to the efforts of this fast growing movement, and there are many opportunities for students to be involved in high profile events.
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