top of page

18th BFI Future Film Festival, 2024

"The presence of platforms like this endorsed by highly recognised institutions, specifically for young creatives that want to break in the industry, holds considerable weight."
Lillo still3.png

Lillo has to overcome the death of his father through his imagination to harvest the corns before the wind blows them away.

Hi Andrea, thank you for talking to TNC. How does it feel to have Lillo part of this year's BFI Future Film Festival?

Surreal. It's such a privilege to share“Lillo” at the BFI Future Film Festival, where other emerging voices are speaking their truths. Being here at this institution, sharing our art, is truly something special. I'm grateful for the opportunity to connect with fellow filmmakers and to contribute to the diversity of voices represented at this prestigious event.

You were part of the Gold Rising programme. How valuable were these opportunities for you as you started your filmmaking journey?

It holds immense value for my career, especially given that my work was endorsed by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. This global initiative, dedicated to talent development and inclusion in filmmaking, provided me with invaluable resources and support. Out of 7,000 applications, only 5 of the 100 selected were Production Designers, making this recognition even more meaningful. Academy GOLD not only gave me the tools and confidence to navigate the industry but also gave me nurturing friendships that continue to enrich my journey.

What did it mean to you to be able to present Lillo at Cineteca Nacional during Jornada 2023?

It was truly unbelievable to see my first short film screened at the heart of the Mexican cinema. Additionally, the program it was showcased in holds a lot of importance in my career. La Jornada is an initiative dedicated to ensuring that the voices and artistic expressions of women in the industry are seen, heard, and felt. The Mexican Consulates around the world curated a selection of women filmmakers to be part of this year's lineup.

Are there any nerves ahead of the screening?

Honestly, Yes! But I like to think that it's part of it, and that those nerves are proof that we love what we do and truly care for it. I'm so grateful to have the support of my family here; it eases the nerves.

Your lead actor Logan Ramos is going to accompany you to London. How excited is he, do you think the experience will cement his desire to become an actor?

He is beyond excited, to see himself on the big screen and to see where art might take him if he keeps perusing it. I guess at his young age, he is realizing how far he could go. This experience will definitely mark his career.

How important are festivals like Future Film Festival in creating a platform for short films and emerging filmmakers?

The significance of this opportunity cannot be overemphasised. I feel so grateful for the platform given to us to showcase our films and engage in the safe exchange of our ideas and perspectives. The presence of platforms like this endorsed by highly recognized institutions, specifically for young creatives that want to break in the industry, holds considerable weight. Such platforms not only facilitate the recognition but also creates a safe space for personal and professional development. It gives us the introduction to our community.


What more can be done to bring short films to audiences outside of festivals?

I guess it will be using more social media and press that a larger audience will be attracted to. Combining online promotion, strategic partnerships, and a solid engagement with the film community because this can maximize the exposure and impact of short films beyond the festival circuit.

Can you tell me how Lillo came about, what inspired your screenplay?

When my grandmother died, I wondered where she went. All of my family felt an enormous pain, my little cousin even though he felt it too somehow managed to find joy every day. My mind wanted to understand how he was doing it, then I realized that in order to understand him, I had to think like a child, I had to feel like a child again. “Lillo” sounds like “niño” (boy in Spanish) to enhance the idea that in order to go through pain we have to remember that children find beauty in everything. “Life is beautiful even though they are no longer there” I’ve always felt a strong connection with my inner child, that is why in my hardest moments I take care of it to keep growing through life’s experiences.

Did you have any apprehensions about working with non-actors in your film?

I did, perhaps I was apprehensive about how they would be nervous in front of a crew and a camera. I workshopped with my actors for weeks before the shoot day, and our rehearsal method involved performing it as a play, from start to finish. My fear was that breaking the scenes to fit the schedule would make the essence we created disappear, but it did not. I constantly explained how things were done in the world of film, and they were amazed by it rather than feeling out of place.

How did you go about connecting with the farmers from San Miguel, Mexico?

The actors are my family, and my goal was to introduce them to the world I live in. That's how it started; they always hear me talk about films and the process, and I truly wanted them to be part of something they wouldn't have imagined before. It was about sharing my passion with them and giving them a firsthand experience of what I love doing.

What was the biggest challenge you faced bringing Lillo to the big screen?

Finishing it! The hardest part was the editing. I wanted to edit it because it was so personal to me. I thought at some point that I was only going to show it to my family because they deserved to see it but didn’t think of sharing it with a larger audience until the color made by Hugo Arvizu and the music by Walter Thoma came in. That’s when I felt that this story had to be shared and felt by others.

What’s been the most valuable lesson you’ve taken from making Lillo?

If you make something from a genuine place, it will take you further, to places you didn’t imagine you could go. Lillo was born to make my family and people that don’t see themselves on a screen, be part of the film world, and of course to heal. Being here at the BFI makes me realize that something so pure will open up a path to us if we believe in it.

Where did your passion for filmmaking come from?

Since I was a kid, I was madly in love with art. I grew through it, and when the time came to make the decision of what I would do with my life, many signs pointed to the film path because it is the art that encompasses them all. It is where I feel my voice is strong enough to speak up, to evoke feelings, and to effect the necessary changes, to transform.

"I want to make films about stories that have to be felt, I am the vessel for those voices and for my own."

How much has your background as a production designer helped to influence the way you write and direct?

I love this question because it could also go the other way around, and the word that will enfold everything is “Details”. When I do production design, I like to tell little stories within the frame, leaving traces of the characters' life, personality and lots of hidden meanings. Metaphors is the language I speak when I work in the Art Department and when I change to directing the details are present than ever.

Has your approach to your films changed a lot since you started out?

Definitely, I guess when I was in film school it was about exploring different genres and styles but somehow I went back to the roots, and that is magical realism. I’m more than open to do different things but the base will always be meanings and metaphors.

What does Lillo say about you as a filmmaker and the stories you want to tell in the future?


Lillo is the start of everything, it has tiny little dreams inside. I want to make films about stories that have to be felt, I am the vessel for those voices and for my own. Genuine films that start with a question to heal myself and others. Also, I know I’m not there yet but slowly i want to create opportunities for those that don’t have the resources to be in the film industry. To help people to connect with their inner child, nature and roots is my life time goal and dream.

And finally, what do you hope you audiences will take away from Lillo?

To heal and understand that the ones who have departed are still with us. When my grandmother died, I wondered where she went and now I know she lives in the fields where we grow up, in a colorful sunset, in the river that flows but most important in our souls.

bottom of page