Kristian Mercado Figueroa on Crafting Reggaetón Animation Nuevo Rico | SXSW 2021

Nuevo Rico

Nuevo Rico

Kristian Mercado Figueroa made an animated short film gem Nuevo Rico for this year’s SXSW 2021.

The unique style of animation combined with reggaeton music created a wonderful storytelling experience of two siblings propelled into stardom for a price.

Nuevo Rico earned the Jury Award in the short films competition at SXSW 2021 after its premiere at the festival.

Here’s the full synopsis:

A brother and sister stumble upon a celestial secret that changes their lives forever and propels them into Reggaeton’s stardom, but they soon discover that their newfound fame comes at a deep price.

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LRM Online’s Gig Patta spoke with director and writer Kristian Mercado Figueroa about the music, story, and animation style in the short film.

Kristian Mercado Figueroa is a Puerto Rican filmmaker living in Spanish Harlem. In 2019, his music-driven short film Pa’lante won the SXSW Jury Award. A year later, his screenplay HawkBells garnered an award for screenwriting at the Slamdance Film Festival. He was an official selection at SXSW 2020 for both Grammy-nominated Black Pumas and Miami Nights. Also, Mercado Figueroa directed the upcoming Netflix comedy specials for Hannibal Buress and Saturday Night Live’s Sam Jay, which are scheduled as summer releases. Other projects he worked on included Adult Swim, Bad Bunny, Billie Elish, Awkwafina, and MF DOOM.

As in Nuevo Rico, Mercado Figueroa’s unique storytelling addresses the issues of identity, family, and systemic oppression across race and class.

The executive producers included Jackie Cruz, Maitreya Yasuda, Mike Anderson, Jeff Hood, and Kristian Mercado Figueroa. Debora Perez, Kate Chamuris, and Angel Manuel Soto are producers of the short film.

Watch the exclusive interview below with Kristian Mercado Figueroa. Let us know what you think.

Source: LRM Online Exclusive

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Gig Patta

Gig Patta is a journalist and interviewer for LRM and Latino-Review since 2009. He was a writer for other entertainment sites in the past with Collider and IESB.net. He originally came from the world of print journalism with several years as a reporter with the San Diego Business Journal and California Review. He earned his MBA from the Keller Graduate School of Management and BA in Economics from UC San Diego. Follow him on Instagram @gigpatta or Facebook @officialgigpatta.

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