Atlantic City - a short film

Hey there! I'm Miguel Alvarez and I'm a filmmaker from Austin, Texas. I've been making films here for fifteen years but originally I'm from San Antonio. I've been wanting to tell a story about that particular part of south Texas for a long time.

Also, as a filmmaker, I’ve long been interested in exploring the idea of loss within the lives of my films’ characters. Whether it be the loss of innocence or the loss of family, there is a powerful effect on our lives and it’s these moments that interest me.

Which brings me to Atlantic City.

Raúl and Felix are two south Texas drifters - brothers in spirit, if not blood. Raúl last connection to his estranged mother is a postcard she sent twenty years ago from Atlantic City. When Felix refuses to help find his mother, Raúl resorts to taking a job from a local thug to raise the money to search for her himself. It's here that he meets Marie, a fifteen-year old runaway, that he tries to help. 

Who's In It?

These two extremely talented guys.

Raúl Castillo: An actor alternating among film, television, and theater, Raúl Castillo is most recognizable for his portrayal of the charming “Richie” on the acclaimed HBO series Looking, which will return with a telefilm, directed by Andrew Haigh, later this year. For his work on the show, Castillo has earned a Best Comedic Actor award from the National Association for Multi-Ethnicity in Communications (NAMIC) and received the Lupe Award from the National Association of Latino Independent Producers. In 2015, Variety included him in its coveted “10 Latinos To Watch” list. Born and raised in Texas, Castillo studied theater at Boston University's School of Fine Arts. He currently resides in New York City. (IMDB)

Felix Solis: Felix Solis is a New York City based actor who has appeared in over 18 films including The Forgotten, Taking Chance, The International, My Soul to Take, and Gun Hill Road. Solis' television episodic work includes The Following, The Good Wife, Colony, NYC 22, Made in Jersey, Weekends at Bellvue, Criminal Minds, Army Wives, Damages, Fringe, The Sopranos, Oz, The West Wing, Third Watch, NYPD Blue and New York Undercover. (IMDB)

Why Now?

Felix, Raul, and I have been looking to make this film for a couple of years but various professional and personal commitments have kept us tied up til now. We've finally got individual schedules and equipment sorted out and late May is a go!

What Have We Done So Far?

We've got equipment lined up, crew secured, and are knee deep in location scouting and casting. 

Who Are We?

Miguel Alvarez - Writer/Director

I'm the guy in the middle. My  previous films, Tadpoles, Veterans, KID and Mnemosyne Rising have received awards from the DGA, Panavision, National Hispanic Foundation for the Arts, and others. I currently teach at the University of Texas at Austin and serve as Executive Producer for Austin Film Festival's television show, On Story.

Rachel Ecklund - Producer 

Rachel Ecklund is an Austin, TX based producer with a passion for socially-conscious storytelling. Most recently, she produced a short documentary for Frontline and the New York Times about Latino voting in Texas. As Story Producer for, she created content for two nationally broadcast PBS series.

Naiti Gamez - Cinematographer

Naiti Gamez has worked as a cinematographer and director on award-winning films and television series. Her film credits have screened at dozens of festivals worldwide, including Festival de Cannes, Sundance, Tribeca Film Festival, Clermont-Ferrand, SXSW, Festival du Cinema de Paris, Woodstock Film Festival, Hampton's International Film Festival, Festival de Cine Internacional de Barcelona and Taos Talking Pictures. Her TV credits include HBO, Showtime, PBS, ESPN, MTV/MTV2, Discovery Channel, Animal Planet, & tuTV.

Nazanin Shirazi - Production Designer

Nazanin is a production designer, set decorator and filmmaker who currently resides in Austin, Texas. As a designer, her film credits have screened internationally, including Festival de Cannes, Austin Film Festival, SXSW, Tribeca, Clermont Ferrand, Chicago Latino Film Festival, and the Munich International Film Festival among dozens of others.

Why Should You Support?

There are stories aching to be told from all over and we believe it's important that as many of these be told as possible. That's the heart that drives independent cinema. We have a story that is uniquely south Texas and we want to share it with the world. Your generous donation helps create a platform for diverse and vibrant voices in film. As most filmmakers will tell you, it’s extremely difficult to make a good film without resources. Though we have a little, we need your support to pull this off. 

Also, all donations are tax deductible due to our fiscal sponsorship through the Austin Film Festival. So please support - it's tax free!

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