Congrats are in order. The Independent Filmmaker Project has announced that El Empantanado (in English, The Muddy), a Colombian-American film shot on location in South Florida written and directed by Felipe Echavarría, was chosen for its outstanding creative vision by participants of the 2012 Narrative Independent Filmmaker Lab. It ranked with nine other films. The Independent Filmmaker Project IFP is the nation’s oldest and largest organization of independent filmmakers. Since its inception, IFP has supported the production of 7,000 films. Currently, IFP represents a network of 10,000 filmmakers in New York City and around the world. El Empantanado is the vision of Felipe Echavarria (Writer & Director) and Maggie Drayton (Producer), young independent filmmakers based in Miami. It costars the lovely Paula Mendoza (pictured).
The movie tells the story of Colombian journalist, Juan Gaviria, who escapes after years in captivity at the mercy of revolutionary forces. His wife, Andrea, admits having an affair with his friend, Daniel, in his absence. However, not being free of sin, Juan decides to forgive. He and Andrea accompany Daniel to Key Largo for a diving weekend, where Juan’s PTSD forces them all to confront their darkest secrets.
Echavarria and Drayton are graduates of the University of Miami Motion Picture M.F.A. Program. In 2010 Drayton founded CineStation Entertainment, a Miami-based, bilingual production company, and has served as both the Programming Director and Filmmaker Liason for the Miami Short Film Festival. Echavarria teaches at the University of Miami School of Communication. El Empantanado is their opera prima.