For the final Big Tell Filmmaker Profile, we’ve asked local filmmaker Jose Edward Muñoz ten questions about himself and his mini documentary exploring the love story behind the establishment of the Kings Cultural Center.
Central Valley Community Foundation (CVCF): As a lifelong resident of the Central Valley, what do you love most about it?
Jose Edward Muñoz (JEM): The agriculture[.] I grew up [on] a ranch in Kings County surrounded by melons, tomatoes, garlic, grapes, [and more]. I would take walks with my family around the fields in the afternoons. Just being in that environment feels like home.
CVCF: How long have you been interested in filmmaking?
JEM: Since college[.] I always thought about working in LA but then got involved in news locally. It’s a faster pace and shorter stories.
CVCF: How did you get into filmmaking?
JEM: Every now and then I would work on small pieces for community groups for grant applications[;] always something small and free but it was always fun. [I have] never done anything at this scale. For a while, my equipment was outdated [and I] finally had the opportunity to upgrade[.] [I] thought The Big Tell would be a great [chance] to use [the new equipment].
CVCF: Are there any directors, screenwriters, etc. that have influenced you?
JEM: George Lucas, Steven Spielberg, Quentin Tarantino, Christopher Nolan, James Cameron, Ridley Scott, Matthew Vaughn, Ron Howard, Guillermo Del Toro, Robert Zemeckis, [and] J.J. Abrams, to name a few.
CVCF: Imagine budget was no object – what would your dream film project look like?
JEM: A documentary piece on the history of folklórico in the Central Valley.
CVCF: What is your film for The Big Tell about, and why did you choose that subject?
JEM: My story for The Big Tell is about the Kings Cultural Center and how it came to be. I have been surrounded by folklórico for several years and I had two folklórico groups I was thinking about. In the end, I chose the Kings Cultural Center.
CVCF: If you could create an attention-grabbing “tagline” for your film, what would it be?
JEM: The promise to give back.
CVCF: What impact do you hope your film will have on the audience?
JEM: I hope the audience sees the love that the [subjects of my film], the Medina family, [have] to give back to their community, [s]taring from teaching from their home to establishing the Kings Cultural Center.
CVCF: What does winning this grant for The Big Tell mean to you?
JEM: A total surprise[.] I entered not even thinking about getting to this stage. I was encouraged by a friend to submit an idea and [that’s really] how far I thought it would go.
CVCF: Can you leave us with one last interesting fact about yourself?
JEM: My work in news has [earned] me several Emmy nominations with five wins [including] directing, editing, and photography.
If you’d like to connect with Jose Edward Muñoz, please visit him on Facebook.
Make sure to come out THIS Friday, October 20, 2017 for The Big Tell Showcase at Warnors Theatre! All 10 films by our extremely talented filmmakers will be screened at a FREE, all-ages red carpet event. Make sure to RSVP now!