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CFP NeMLA 2017: Hispanic Filmmaking in English?

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    Erin K. Hogan

    Call for Papers: Hispanic Filmmaking in English?

    North East Modern Language Association (NeMLA) in Baltimore, MD – March 23-26, 2017


    The Oscar-winning directors and pictures of the past three years–Alfonso Cuarón’s Gravity and Alejandro González Iñárritu’s Birdman and The Revenant–call more attention to a growing trend of filmmakers born outside the United States making and earning accolades for their cinematic productions in English. This presents a migration out of the Foreign Language Film category, for which Guillermo del Toro’s Pan’s Labyrinth (2006) was nominated and Juan José Campanella’s The Secret in Their Eyes (2009) won, to the, arguably, more mainstream and prestigious categories of Best Picture and Director.


    This roundtable discussion will focus on these works and the theoretical challenges they present. How do we talk about these films and filmmakers who hail from Mexico (Cuarón, Iñarritu), Spain (Amenábar, Coixet, León de Aranoa), and Peru (Llosa), for instance, but whose recent motion pictures are not set in their directors’ home countries nor converse in their native languages as did features at the onset of their filmmakers’ careers? Are they transnational? Transcultural? Global? “Hispanic”? Do they have anything in common? Do their films represent issues of interculturality, migration, and diversity? While these works do not evidence ties to their creators’ national origins, do they still express a transnational sensibility? Does relocation allow directors to deal with issues, for example, of (national) identity with greater freedom? Is it, as Isabel Coixet has said that: “sometimes one has to go very far to relate something very closely”? Are respective national filmmaking policies and the market largely responsible for the shift? What are the historic precedents of this phenomenon?


    Thank you in advance for submitting your paper to this session! This roundtable will also consider proposals dealing with directors from other parts of the world who film in English and may consider Hollywood remakes of Spanish and Latin American box office hits. Abstracts (300 words for a 5-10 minute presentation) may be submitted between June 25th and September 30th through NEMLA’s online system ( ). Decision e-mails will be sent by October 15th. NEMLA asks that accepted and confirmed panelists pay their membership/registration fees by by December 1, 2016 in order to present at the 2017 convention.

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