Talented Ecuadorian Filmmaker Sebastián Cordero

Born in Quito on May 23, 1972, Sebastián Cordero is an Ecuadorian writer, film director and editor mostly readily recognized for his debut film – Ratas, Ratones, Rateros – portraying a life of poverty in Ecuador. The film was nominated at the 2001 Spanish Goya Awards for Best Film of the Year and was screened at the Venice, Toronto, Buenos Aires, San Sebastián, Huelva and La Habana film festivals. Subsequent films directed by Cordero include Crónicas, Rabia and Pescador.

Cordero’s interest in filmmaking was sparked by the movie Raiders of the Lost Ark, which he saw when he was nine-years-old. After completing his education in Ecuador, he attended the University of Southern California in the United States where he studied filmmaking and script writing. Upon his graduation he decided to move back to the land of his birth to pursue his career, completing his debut film Ratas, Ratones, Rateros in 1999. The film starred Carlos Valencia and Marco Bustos following the lives of petty thief Salvador (played by Bustos) and his ex-convict cousin Ángel (played by Valencia).

Released in 2004, Cordero’s second film, Crónicas, is set in rural Ecuador where a television journalist investigates the rape and murder of children in the area. Starring Colombian-born actor John Leguizamo as the journalist named Manolo Bonilla, the film was selected as the official entry for Ecuador in the 77th Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language category, but was not nominated.

Cordero’s third film, Rabia, was set in Spain and based on a book by Argentinian writer Sergio Bizzio, telling the story of a doomed romance between two Latin American illegal immigrants. His most recent film, Pescador, was released in 2011 and was well received by critics, who noted that it was a significant departure from his previous works. Set in Ecuador, near Guayaquil, the story revolves around a drug heist gone wrong with bricks of cocaine washing up on the beach where local fishermen discover it and re-sell it to the original drug cartel. This new found fortune gives the main character, Blanquito, the courage to pursue an attractive local woman he had previously considered to be out of his reach.

Certainly, Sebastián Cordero has shown his aptitude for producing entertaining films, and movie-lovers are no doubt keen to see what this talented Ecuadorian filmmaker will have to offer next.