With the film industry trying to become more inclusive and changing the criteria for the Oscars, new studios are emerging with new voices. Cuban immigrant, Ozzie Areu who came from modest upbringings wanted to be a cop and after taking a job as a security guard at Warner Bros. his career aspirations changed.
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Twenty-five-years later, Areu presides over one of the nation’s largest Latino owned and operated film studios, a 60-acre site in Atlanta that he plans to advocate for underrepresented groups in the entertainment industry. Areu Bros. goals are to move beyond just cinema, they have since become involved with digital streaming and music.
Likewise, Tyler Perry Studios is continuing to set the standard adding a drama to BET+, currently working on All the Queen’s Men for the streaming service that is a joint venture between his company and ViacomCBS. The series centers around the life of Marilyn 'Madam' DeVille, a fierce businesswoman who is at the top of her game in the nightclub industry and surrounded by a group of trusted employees, but she soon discovers that more money and more power mean more problems.
Similar to Areu’s humble upbringings, Mónica Esmeralda León was an immigrant from Mexico who settled in Chicago, founding Ave Fenix Pictures Studios; the first Latino movie studio in Chicago and the Midwest. León created her studio with writer and actor Zachary Laoutides, both whom were working with at risk youngsters from their community and saw film as an artistic opportunity to help the youth express themselves and their stories.
The studio has extended into California under European director Marius Iliescu and in Phoenix Arizona, Assyrian-American Producers Emmanuel Isaac and Mirza Esho. The studio is set to begin in Chicago the drama thriller Where Sweet Dreams Die about an Italian American who is on the verge of losing his restaurant and wife to cancer, when he begins to follow a Middle Eastern immigrant about to acquire his livelihood.