AMI in the News


Struggling to Film in America’s Chokehold: Cuban Moviemakers Feeling Burden of U.S. Embargo By VICTORIA BURNETT  APRIL 4, 2014


MEXICO CITY — In Hollywood terms, it was small change. But for Miguel Coyula, a Cuban filmmaker accustomed to working on a tiny budget, the $5,200 he raised on the crowdfunding site last year would have bought some lighting equipment, a Steadicam and a tripod, all crucial for his science-fiction feature, “Blue Heart.” However, Indiegogo suspended the campaign in August and froze the money after determining that transferring funds to Cuba or a Cuban resident would violate the United States’ economic embargo. READ MORE

Cuban Filmmaker, Miguel Coyula


By Sujatha Fernandes and Alexandra Halkin



AUGUST 5, 2013

Per the press release from Icarus Films, the same distribution that acquired and will release The Great Flood, from director Bill Morrison, as well as 6 Jean Rouch classics for North American distribution, including his landmark 1957 work Moi, Un Noir (Me, A Black), and also The Last Angel of History as well as Seven Songs for Malcolm X both by John Akomfrah - all releases we've covered on S&A. 

The company announced today its acquisition of all North American distribution rights to 11 films from the Cuba Media Project of the Americas Media Initiative

The films are all independent productions, and, with the exception of two compilation programs, all documentaries. Together they offer the rare opportunity to see Cuba documented by media artists whose work has been little seen outside the country.

Among other titles, the collection includes Ernesto Pérez Zambrano’s Major Leagues? (¿Grandes Ligas?), an exploration of the Cuban National women’s baseball team, Gustavo Pérez’s They Would All Be Queens (Todas iban ser reinas), about Soviet women who emigrated to Cuba for marriage prior to the dissolution of the Soviet Union, and Katrin Hansing’s Freddy Ilanga: Che’s Swahili Translator (Freddy Ilanga: El Traductor del Che), a profile of an African man whose life was transformed by a chance encounter with one of the great icons of the 20th century.


The deal was signed by Jonathan Miller, President of Icarus Films, and Alexandra Halkin, Director of the Americas Media Initiative, which produces, screens, and distributes independent and community-produced media from the Americas.


Beginning in September, Icarus Films will handle all North American distribution responsibilities for the collection. There will be two new releases added to the collection this year.   


For more information on the Americas Media Initiative, visit

For more information on Icarus Films, visit



Closing Distances 2 Tour Cuban TV Coverage. Recorded in Guantanamo.
May 24, 2013

Below is a Cuban Television news segment on our Closing Distances 2 Tour in Eastern Cuba featuring documentary filmmaker Minda Martin, and AMI Director Alexandra Halkin:

Image"A New Era’s Filmmakers Find Their Way in Cuba"
Published: January 4, 2013

Recent New York Times article about Cuban Filmmaking that
mentions AMI and a number of our filmmakers. 



Documentary Fortnight is an international festival of nonfiction film and media, presented annually by New York’s Museum of Modern Art (MoMA). It examines the relationship between contemporary art and nonfiction practices, and reflects on new areas of documentary filmmaking. The 12th edition of this important documentary showcase, which took place February 28 through March 4, for the first time featured four programs of recent short films by Cuban filmmakers. Documentary Fortnight is organized by Sally Berger, Assistant Curator in MoMA’s Film Department. She selected the “New Cuban Shorts” in collaboration with Alexandra Halkin, director of the Americas Media Initiative (AMI).
here to read the full story)                                                  
photo credit: Monteros (2006) by Alejandro Ramírez Anderson. 

Photo by Raúl Cañibano. Courtesy of Alejandro Ramírez Anderson.