“Parivara” documentary, directed and written by Alex Lora & Alex Kruz, produced by Alex Kruz, is an official selection of the prestigious IFFNY Festival. The documentary will screen on Sunday 27, 2018 at 4:30 pm at Producers Club Theaters.
Alex Lora is a Spanish Director and Producer. Winner of two New York Emmys® after four nominations, finalist for the Oscars®-Student Academy Awards, Goya® Spanish Academy Award Nominee, and winner of a Gaudi® Catalan Academy Award after being nominated on three occasions. Listed as one of the top 10 promising Spanish directors to watch for in Variety’s Cannes Edition of 2014, his work has received over 100 awards, being officially selected in some of the most internationally-acclaimed film festivals like Sundance where he screened twice. He has taught film at several prestigious universities and received his MFA in Media Arts Production at City College of New York as a Fulbright scholar.
Alex K. Rojas is an American producer and humanitarian. “Parivara” marks his first work as a director alongside Alex Lora-Cercos. Outside of his global work on behalf of several charities and causes which benefit children and those affected by human trafficking, he helped found the “Samarpan Foundation” (“Unconditional Service” in Sanskrit), a 501c non-governmental agency based in Nepal. The Samarpan Foundation carries out several initiatives to better the lives of children, women affected by sexual slavery, the elderly, and the disabled. “Parivara” is based on several of the children’s stories in the Goldungha Orphanage for the Blind which Samarpan helps maintain.
Meet the Filmmakers: NY Elite Interview with with Alex Lora and Alex K. Rojas
NY Elite: Congratulations on being an official selection at the prestigious International Filmmaker Festival of New York. What are your thoughts about being accepted at IFFNY 2018 film festival and having your film screen in New York City?
Alex K. Rojas: Honestly? I thought it would never screen in NYC! It’s home. We’re very happy and thankful to the IFFNY for selecting it. It screened in Nepal, where it had an impact on the children’s situation having the government confer scholarships for the children’s education, in Spain, where it was part of the Gaudi Awards shortlist, in Sydney where it won honorable mention behind this year’s Oscar winner “The Silent Child”, Bilbao, Ecuador, China, and several other places, but not where we call home.
Alex Lora: Showing the film in the place where we live it’s something very special. It was nice to share it with the audiences in other parts of the world, especially in Nepal and also in Spain, where I’m from, but we were really looking forward to having it screened in New York.
NY Elite: Out of the 500 submissions world-wide, your film was selected as the top 40 for IFFNY. What does this mean for you in terms of representing your country/city at this international film competition?
Alex K. Rojas: New York is home, win or lose – we’re just happy to be here. Telling the children’s stories. Sharing hope where others see bleakness and despair.
Alex Lora: As Alex says, it’s very special, but at the end the protagonists are the children.
NY Elite: With what project are you partaking at IFFNY 2018? What is it about?
Alex K. Rojas: “Parivara”. It is a story about the human spirit and finding your place. So for me it is a universal story.
Alex Lora: It portrays the story of Kopila, a blind Nepalese girl that discovers what is her mission in life.
NY Elite: Who else is involved in the making of this project? Tell us a little bit more about the story and who is in it.
The beautiful children from the Goldungha orphanage in Nepal, their caretaker Sunita Pant, and those that help take care of them. The story follows young Kopila through a fateful day in her life following the 2015 earthquake in Nepal.
NY Elite: What message do you want to convey with this project?
Alex K. Rojas: Be thankful for what you have. Families don’t have to fit the conventional mold in order to fill their purpose – stability, support, growth. We all look for a place to put down roots.
Alex Lora: And never lose hope.
NY Elite: The Red Carpet Opening Ceremony and the Awards Gala will take place at the renowned Kaufman Astoria Studios of New York. Do you plan to attend the IFFNY Festival taking place on May 25-29, 2018? What do you want the audience at IFFNY to take away from this film?
Alex K. Rojas: Yes, we plan to attend. What do we want the audience at IFFNY to take away from this film? – The children had fun helping us make this. They are happy. They are strong and their lives have been changed for the better by this little project. Never be afraid to do something good for others.
NY Elite: What makes a film great for you? Are there certain qualities that make a film better for you?
Alex K. Rojas: Different films have different qualities which make them stand out and touch different parts of us. It would be odd for me to compare the greatness of say Spielberg to David Lynch, Nolan, or Fellini, or others. If you grab our attention and give us an escape then like all good art it stands the test of time.
Alex Lora: I couldn’t have said anything better.
NY Elite: Top 3 favorite films/projects you have been involved in?
Alex K. Rojas: Parivara, really anything creative. Everyday is different.
Alex Lora: Parivara, The Fourth Kingdom, Thy Father’s Chair.
NY Elite: What are your career highlights and achievements thus far?
Alex K. Rojas: I judge my career a little bit differently – this project had a significant impact for the children, Medina’s Dream, and Godka Cirka did as well. I’m a collector of lost causes and voices unheard, especially those of children.
Alex Lora: Success is something very relative. I’m happy if I can keep making films, and if we can make other people happy in that way, even better.
NY Elite: Do you express yourself creatively in any other ways?
Alex K. Rojas: I once did a theatrical piece opposite Bruce Willis at Creative Artists Agency, and a film opposite Michael Madsen and Ed Asner so sometimes they let me play with Hollywood tough guys, otherwise I could have fun in a paper bag.
Alex Lora: I also secretly write bad poetry, but I only share audiovisual creations.
NY Elite: What advice would you give to someone who wants to have a career in filmmaking?
Alex K. Rojas: In the immortal words of Shia Laboeuf – “Just DO it!”
Alex Lora: Fail, fail more, fail best!
NY Elite: What’s next for you?
Alex K. Rojas: We’re working on a few projects, but we’d like to do virtual reality. Wouldn’t that be fun? A Matrix within a Matrix? No, honestly I can code C++ like a demon : )
Alex Lora: I’m editing my second feature documentary now and eventually I’d love to try with a feature narrative. There are several projects there, but let’s see what happens.