CRISTINA KOTZ CORNEJO
Director | Writer | Producer
Cristina formed Wild Wimmin Films in 1995. The name of the company is inspired by Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estés and her pioneering book, Women Who Run With Wolves. Finding strength and inspiration from the stories of our ancestors and the power within women, Cristina chose to honor the Wild Woman, a female who is aware of her primal side and who feels confident in relying on her gut instincts to make choices, something that has not been encouraged or nurtured in patriarchal societies.
Born in Michigan but raised on the West Coast of the United States and in Buenos Aires, Argentina in a bilingual, bicultural family, Cristina Kotz Cornejo is also a descendant of the Indigenous Huarpe people of the Cuyo region of Argentina and an enrolled member of the Comunidad LOF Vicente Catrunao Pincén. Cristina received a M.F.A. from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, a M.A. in Organizational Arts Management from Antioch University and a B.A. in International Relations from the University of Southern California.
3 Américas (2007) was Cristina’s feature film debut loosely based on her own adolescent years. The film has screened around the world, ranging from Mexico City to Montevideo, Uruguay to New York City. 3 Américas was in the official script competition (as Soledad) at the 2003 International Festival of New Latin American Cinema in Havana, Cuba. She is the recipient of 2004 & 2007 Moving Image Fund Grants from the LEF Foundation in support of 3 Américas’ development and was invited to attend the Sundance Institute’s 2004 Independent Producer’s Conference with 3 Américas (as Soledad). 3 Américas is distributed by Vanguard Cinema and Cinetic Rights Management and can be found here on Netflix or here on SnagFilms. Her short film, La Guerra Que No Fue/The War That Never Was (2004) screened at over 25 national and international festivals in over 10 countries and is distributed by OUAT! Media. Her shorts, Despertar (2011), Hermanas (2013) and Buena Fé (2014) have played festivals around the world. She is in the development stage of a new feature screenplay.
In 2000 she was commissioned by the Partnership for a Drug Free America to direct, Ernesto (2000), which premiered at the Palm Springs International Short Film Festival in August of that same year. Her short film, The Appointment (1999), developed under the advisement of Spike Lee, Nancy Savoca and Pascal Aubier while a student at NYU, was awarded a Warner Brothers Pictures Production Award, a Dean’s Post Production Award, and 3 NYU Craft Awards and was picked up for distribution by Urban Entertainment in Los Angeles. In 1999, Cristina was awarded an Independent Vision Grant from the Independent Feature Project to direct Off to College I Go! (1999), a 2 minute short which premiered at the Film Forum in New York City as part of the Classically Independent Film Festival. Her documentary short film, Jewel and The Catch, about African American LGBTQ activist, Jewel Thais-Williams was selected by Outfest to be part of the Outfest UCLA Legacy Project of UCLA's Film and Television Archive. Excerpts from Jewel and the Catch can be seen in the opening credit sequence of season 3 of the series Transparent by Jill Soloway.
Cristina is also contributing author in Filming Difference: Actors, Directors, Producers and Writers on Gender, Race and Sexuality in Film, University of Texas Press (edited by Daniel Bernardi); May 2009.
In 2014, Cristina was promoted to Full Professor in the Department of Visual and Media Arts at Emerson College in Boston making her the first Latina Full Professor of Media Production in the US. She is currently the Associate Chair of Production in the department. Cristina is the recipient of the Mann Stearns Distinguished Faculty Award and the 2019 American Spirit Award for Special Achievement in Educating New Filmmakers from the Caucus for Producers, Writers, Directors.
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