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Announcing The U.S.-Mexico Bicentennial Kaleidoscope: A Short Film Contest & Festival

December 12, 2022- Today marks the 200th anniversary of diplomatic relations between the United States and Mexico, a remarkable milestone for our two neighboring countries that share a 2,000-mile-long border, an economic trading relationship second to none, an interconnected history, common values and a common culture, a series of daunting environmental challenges and opportunities, and a shared destiny going forward.

            As our national governments celebrate two centuries of formal relations between them, The Sidney Poitier New American Film School at Arizona State University, the Universidad de Guadalajara, and the Mexico Institute at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars announce the launch of their jointly sponsored U.S.-Mexico Bicentennial Kaleidoscope: A Short Film Contest and Festival.

            “We want to honor the amazing kaleidoscope of everyday stories encompassed by the broader U.S.-Mexico relationship,” said Peter Murrieta, the deputy director of ASU’s Poitier Film School. “For millions of individuals – and our families and communities on both sides of the border – ties to the other country help define us. And too many of these stories go untold or are overshadowed by a narrow channel of all too familiar narratives.”

            The Bicentennial Kaleidoscope will be comprised of all sorts of stories that bridge our two countries. They can be a slice of everyday life connected to our cultural ties, sporting fandom, film, TV, music, gastronomy, a business tale, a personal relationship – anything and everything that touches upon the unique U.S.-Mexico relationship.  The stories will not necessarily be about actually crossing the border; they will also be about the presence of the neighboring country within our own, and within our lives.

            “We are very excited to expand our ongoing film collaborations in Los Angeles with Arizona State University’s Poitier School with this film contest,” said José Ramón Miquelajáuregui, director of the Universidad de Guadalajara’s film program (Imagen y Sonido) at its Centro Universitario de Arte, Arquitectura y Diseño. “The cities of Guadalajara and Los Angeles are themselves protagonists in the marvel that is our binational community, and we want to encourage and celebrate a more inclusive mix of voices and perspectives portraying and interpreting these protagonists.”

The Bicentennial Kaleidoscope will begin accepting short films of any genre lasting no more than 7 minutes on March 1 and will be awarding prizes and screening finalists at various events throughout this bicentennial year.

            “The story of the longstanding, meaningful and impactful ties between our nations is one not told often enough in Washington, D.C. and Mexico City. Raising the awareness of policymakers to the impact of this relationship on the daily lives of citizens in both countries is an extremely important component of our work,” said Andrew I. Rudman, director of the Mexico Institute at the Wilson Center. “That is why we applaud the growing cross-border collaboration between ASU and the Universidad de Guadalajara on film, and its focus on lifting new, binational voices to tell and connect our stories, and why we’re honored to partner with them in this important U.S.-Mexico bicentennial project.”

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Nikai Salcido, Media Relations Officer
Media Relations and Strategic Communications
Arizona State University

Deborah Sussman, Senior Communications and Media Specialist
Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts
Arizona State University

About ASU
Arizona State University has developed a new model for the American Research University, creating an institution that is committed to access, excellence and impact. ASU measures itself by those it includes, not by those it excludes. As the prototype for a New American University, ASU pursues research that contributes to the public good, and ASU assumes major responsibility for the economic, social and cultural vitality of the communities that surround it.

About Universidad de Guadalajara 
The University of Guadalajara is a fundamental institution for the formation of high quality human resources and the production of scientific and technological knowledge that support the development of Jalisco. To its University Centers located in the Metropolitan Area of Guadalajara and eight regions of Jalisco 280,297 students come every day to study in the 422 vocational, high school, undergraduate an graduate academic programs the University offers.

About the Mexico Institute 
The Wilson Center, chartered by Congress in 1968 as the official memorial to President Woodrow Wilson, is the nation’s key non-partisan policy forum for tackling global issues through independent research and open dialogue to inform actionable ideas for the policy community. The Mexico Institute seeks to improve understanding, communication, and cooperation between Mexico and the United States by promoting original research, encouraging public discussion, and proposing policy options for enhancing the bilateral relationship. 



Related Program

Mexico Institute

The Mexico Institute seeks to improve understanding, communication, and cooperation between Mexico and the United States by promoting original research, encouraging public discussion, and proposing policy options for enhancing the bilateral relationship. A binational Advisory Board, chaired by Luis Téllez and Earl Anthony Wayne, oversees the work of the Mexico Institute.   Read more