A documentary filmmaker and Los Angeles native, Rodriguez is driven by a desire to chronicle and translate the dramatic cultural changes occurring in the western United States. His previous documentary, the critically acclaimed Mixed Feelings: San Diego/Tijuana explores the landscape and architecture between the U.S./Mexican border. It aired several times during 2002 and 2003 and will continue to air in 2004 on PBS. The film uses animation of architectural models, aerial photography, split screen, digital music and other means to illustrate the cultural differences suggested by the built environments of the two cities.
Rodriguez’s interest in how culture is constructed and brokered by and among elites led to the making of the documentary Manuel Ocampo: God is My Copilot. An examination of multi-culturalism as manifested in the contemporary art world, the film chronicles the rise and fall of a talented young Filipino American painter and his relationship to art dealers and collectors. Featuring Julian Schnabel, Dennis Hopper and Mary Boone, the film witnesses the many misunderstandings between an Asian American West Coast artist and the decidedly New York-centered art world. The film was celebrated at film festivals worldwide, including the AFI International Festival, Hawaii International Film Festival, the Biennale Internationale du Film sur l’Art at the Centre Georges Pomidou in Paris and the Havana Film Festival.
Another Rodriguez project, Pancho Villa and Other Stories, focused on the general exploits of General Pancho Villa and the oral histories of those involved in the revolutionary movement in Mexico. It won an award for Best Documentary at the 2000 San Antonio Cinefestival and was honored at the Smithsonian National Gallery.
Not limited to film, Rodriguez wrote the story and title song for the Grammy-nominated “Papa’s Dream” by Los Lobos. He also founded, published, and edited Avance, a national Latino magazine of arts and culture as well as Esencia, a San Francisco Latino magazine of arts and culture. Rodriguez is a graduate of U.C. Berkeley and has an M.A. in Latin American studies and an M.F.A. in Film and Television from UCLA. He also studied art history and Spanish literature at Universidad Cumplutense de Madrid. He is currently a senior research fellow at the Center for the Study of Los Angeles at Loyola Marymount University.
Produced & Directed by
Claudio Rocha & Humberto Ramirez Jr.
Additional Special Sounds
Riverside Sound LLC, Richard Burton
1st Assistant Editor
Humberto Ramirez Jr.
Anna Dale, Sorayya Kasamali, Gabriela Gonzalez
Digital Post Services Provided by
Digital Film Tree and KPBS
Offscreen Interviews (in order of appearance)
Executive Producer for ITVS
Sally Jo Fifer
Edward C. Cazier, Jr.
Fernando J. Guerra
Panasonic VariCam, DVCPRO HD and Panasonic DVCPRO HD 150 Deck Courtesy of Panasonic
High Definition lens courtesy of Thales Angenieux
Camera Batteries courtesy of Anton Bauer
Lighting courtesy of Kino Flo, Inc.
High Definition support courtesy of Ascent Media Group
Nora Jayne Mallen
Dr. Birute Vileis
Participants and Contributors
David & Ruth De Leon
Capt. Anthony DiTucci
Carolina G. Guevara
Dennis C. Moss
L. Naomi Spellman
Deputy Derrick A. Thompson
Fais Do Do
Go Betty Go
Linda Bukowski, The Estate of Charles Bukowski and John and Barbara Martin
Photographs and Illustrations Courtesy of Conceptual Drawings and Renderings of “L.A. River Park” L.A. Now Volume Two: Shaping a New Vision for Downtown Los Angeles, published by Art Center College of Design, 2002 Patrick McEneany Susan Wong Lai
Los Angeles Public Library Security Pacific Collection Herald Examiner Collection Gary Leonard Harold Morby
The Nissan Open presented by Countrywide and the Los Angeles Junior Chamber of Commerce
Lakewood Photos William Garnett The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center Scientific Visualization Studio
Seaver Center for Western History Research, Los Angeles County Museum of Natural History
Thomas Bros. Maps. Copyright Thomas Bros. Maps, All Rights Reserved
UCLA Air Photo Archives Collection
Compositions and Recordings Music Consulting Norma Manzanares
“Radio Zumbido” “LA Transistor” All tracks written by Radio Zumbido Published by Palm Pictures Publishing
“Night Collider/Half Way There” Written by Cohen/Chloca(BMI) Performed by Languis
Produced in Association with the Independent Television Service (ITVS), Latino Public Broadcasting and KPBS.
All Rights Reserved City Projects, LLC, 2004
This program was produced by City Projects, which is solely responsible for its content
Presented by the Independent Television Service (ITVS), with funding provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.