Mija Film Screening

Sun 05/15/22
All Ages

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Beta Feature: Screenshot Flyers

1:1 Square 9:16 Portrait

Runtime: 88 minutes

Doris Muñoz desperately longed for better representation in the indie music she listened to as a teenager. At 23, she took matters into her own hands and began a career in music talent management, passionately advocating for rising Latinx artists. Her swift success transformed her into a pillar for first-and second-generation Americans seeking community, as well as a breadwinner for her undocumented family. 


Three years later, Doris abruptly receives news that forces her to reconsider working in music.  At this moment of crisis, Doris finds Jacks Haupt, a promising Chicana singer desperate to break out of her parents’ home in Dallas, Texas. Beyond shared moments of joy and hope, Doris and Jacks bond over the ever-present guilt of being the first American-born members of their undocumented families and the financial risks of pursuing their dreams. For them, the pressure of success is heightened because it is their family’s hope for green cards and family reunification. 


Mija is a moving love letter to immigrants and their children. Director Isabel Castro’s intimate debut feature constructs an ethereal love letter to the daughters that fight for their families, their dreams and themselves.

Show Lineup

Isabel Castro

Genre: Filmmaker

Isabel Castro is a four-time Emmy-nominated, Mexican American filmmaker who combines a practice in journalism and art to tell stories about immigration, civil rights, and identity. She splits her time between Mexico City and Los Angeles. 


Castro directed, produced, and filmed the Emmy-nominated, award-winning documentary short USA v Scott (Tribeca 2020, The New Yorker), Emmy-nominated Darlin (Tribeca 2019, NYT OpDocs), and on the Emmy-nominated Netflix docu-series Pandemic. Her debut project Crossing Over (Univision/Participant Media) won a 2015 GLAAD Media Award for Outstanding Documentary. Interviews about her work on Crossing Over were nominated for two additional GLAAD awards. She’s worked on dozens of stories as a producer, cinematographer and multimedia journalist for The New York Times, as an Edward R. Murrow-award winning producer at The Marshall Project, on two seasons of the Emmy-award winning series VICE on HBO, and as an Emmy-nominated producer covering civil rights and policy at VICE News Tonight on HBO. 


Mija is her feature length debut. Mija has received support from the Sundance Institute, Impact Partners, Cinereach, the SFFILM Catapult Documentary Fellowship, Points North Institute / CNN Films, Fork Films, Chicken & EggPictures, Firelight Media, and NBCU Academy & NBC News Studios Original Voices. Castro is an Artist-in-Residence at Concordia Studio, and she was named one of Filmmaker Magazine’s “25 New Faces of Independent Film” and DOC NYC’s “40 Under 40”, both in 2021.

Tabs Breese

Genre: Filmmaker

Tabs Breese began her career working in-house in development for companies Portobello Studios, Pulse Films and Concordia Studio. As an independent producer Tabs has built a slate of films from directors’ intent on exploring the world through careful observation and aesthetic innovation. This includes Isabel Castro’s ‘Mija’, Ivete Lucas and Patrick Bresnan’s ’Naked Gardens’ and experimental short ‘The Twins’ from director Zara Meerza, all of which will premiere in 2022. Tabs is a Sheffield Documentary Festival Future Producer (2017), Refinery29 x Google News Initiative Fellow (2019), an IDFAcademy Producer School Alumna (2019), a Sundance Institute Grantee (2020) and an NBCU Academy and NBC News Studios Original Voices Fellow (2021). In 2021 she was selected for Doc NYC’s ‘40 Under 40’ list. Tabs is the co-founder of Women on Docs LA, a free documentary screening and discussion series.

Yesenia Tlahuel

Genre: Filmmaker

Yesenia Tlahuel is an independent Producer and a first generation American from South Central L.A born to Mexican parents. She is interested in exploring the nuances of the human experience through storytelling. “Mija,” her first produced feature documentary, is a proud testament and reflection of her work. She recently associate produced Joe Biden’s 2020 Campaign films with Academy Award Winning Director Davis Guggenheim, New York Times  OpDocs Emmy nominated series, “From Here to Home: American Stories about Immigration  and Belonging,” Academy-nominated short film Walk Run Cha-cha and has produced Apple’s  first online WorldWide Deverloper’s Conference for the past two years. She is an NBCU Academy and NBC News Studios Original Voices Fellow (2021) and holds a BA from University California, Irvine in Film & Media Studies.