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UMD students Oscar Dominguez & actors Gloria Sandoval & Erick Chavarria

Carrie Snurr | The Diamondback

"The Central American International Film Festival opened Friday at the University of Maryland with a showing of four short films followed by a panel discussion and a feature-length film.

"The festival is the first of its kind at this university, and aims to bring attention to the Central American film industry and issues facing those countries, said Professor Ana Patricia Rodriguez.

"'These films represent the current realities in Central America. They address violence and migration.' Rodriguez said. 'Central America is always a very neglected area and it often just drops out of the equation.'

"Rodriguez joined two actors, Gloria Sandoval and Erick Chavarria, and director Mario Anaya in a panel discussion about the developing Central American film industry and why it is important to show films from the region. About 40 people attended the event at the Stamp Student Union.

"'There's a lack of knowledge in general about Central America,' Chavarria said. 'Everything we hear is that there is a lot of violence, that you shouldn't go on vacation there, but there's a whole world there.'

"The panelists agreed film festivals such this one are important in combatting negative views of the region."

Read the complete article at The Diamondback.


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