While gearing up for the marketing and distribution phase for the “Voices of the Chichinautzin” documentary, I’ve had the chance to go through some of my files and photographs. This one brings back good memories. It was taken on the first day of our production, back in October 2006, and shows our intrepid crew about to embark on an 18-day schedule that would take us throughout the Chichinautzin Biological Corridor.
From left to right is camerman Edson Lopez Pineda, coordinator Flor Zamudio, myself, (director, co-producer), Luis Patron (producer, co-director) and sound recordist/camera assistant Milagros Vargas. On our journey we met many impressive and inspiring people from the communities, coordinators from government, and scientists from the academic institutions, all brought together by the common goal to conserve the rich biodiversity of the Chichinautzin. We learned that the people who live in the Chichinautzin are faced with challenges that are not simple to overcome and require cooperation between many different stakeholders.
This was perhaps most acutely exemplified by the tireless efforts of the Tlahuica people in the San Juan Atzingo community, who have led a ten-year struggle for the protection of their forests from illegal loggers, and on May 15, 2007 had to cope with the tragic loss of Aldo Zamora, a young environmentalist from San Juan Atzingo who was killed in an ambush by members of the illegal logging cartel. Since that time government, NGOs, scientists, environmentalists and members of the community have banded together to put a stop to the illegal logging in the Chichinautzin.
It is our hope that this documentary can make a contribution to this effort by helping to get the message out about the necessity to protect the forests and biodiversity in the Chichinautzin and worldwide, for the benefit of everyone. Fifteen months after this crew photo was taken, I reflect on the importance of this project, as we now embark on the mission of getting the message of “Voices of the Chichinautzin” out into the world. We are seeking international broadcasters, webcasters, and special interest groups who would like to exhibit this documentary. My first stop will be the Victoria International Film Festival and Trigger Points Forum taking place in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada from February 1–10, 2008. Stay tuned for more postings, as I send updates from this exciting event.