Private Project

The Distance To Nebraska

Melvin, an undocumented Latino immigrant worker, wakes up in his car by the beach to a voice message from his son, who tells him he needs more money for the college admissions exam. He
moves onto his sedentary routine, bathing on the beach before pitching for work with his fellow day laborers, who, like him, move around the country to specialize in reconstruction following natural disasters. He rebuilds family homes’ roofs but doesn’t have a roof over his head and is thousands of miles away from his own family. As he goes about his day, he will be forced to confront the perils of a life on the margins in an environment that is hostile to people like him, struggling to get a fair day's pay for a fair day's work while a labor organizer pitches unlikely proposition that would push him out of his sedentary comfort zone and may or may not offer a solution to the urgent problems he faces.

  • Álvaro Guzmán Bastida
  • Álvaro Guzmán Bastida
  • Mehaka Liuntel
  • Omar Ezat
    Key Cast
  • Dan Jessup
    Key Cast
  • Drew Valins
    Key Cast
  • Marlon Quijije
    Key Cast
  • Mauricio Peláez
    Key Cast
  • Marco Antonio Aguilar
    Key Cast
  • Project Type:
  • Runtime:
    15 minutes 7 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    May 7, 2023
  • Production Budget:
    3,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
    English, Spanish
  • Shooting Format:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
    Yes - Columbia University
Director Biography - Álvaro Guzmán Bastida

Álvaro Guzmán Bastida is Spanish-born, Brooklyn-based writer and filmmaker whose work is centered around issues of migration, social inequality, labor, memory, and identity.
His first narrative short film, "Recoba" (2022) received multiple awards at international film festivals, including the Kiez Berlin Film Festival, the New York International Film Awards, the Busan New Wave Short Film Festival, and the Luleå International Film Festival, in Sweden. The film was also selected for the Academy Award-qualifying Cleveland International Film Festival and the Coney Island Film Festival. His second short, "The Distance to Nebraska" (2023) is currently in distribution. It tells the story of a "hurricane-chasing" migrant day laborer who specializes in rebuilding after natural disasters and struggles to stay afloat in a hostile environment while trying to keep a connection with his son, thousands of miles away.
He has also written two feature-length screenplays and a television pilot.
Before becoming a narrative filmmaker, he worked as a journalist, non-fiction writer and documentary film producer and director. As a producer, he has worked at Al Jazeera English and was an Associate Producer in the Netflix Documentary series "Unnatural Selection" (2019) and "Immigration Nation" (2020). He has also written for newspapers in magazines in Spain, Argentina, the UK, and the Netherlands. He is the author of the book "Trump as a Symptom" (2019) and is currently pursuing an MFA in Screenwriting/ Directing at Columbia University, on a fellowship from the La Caixa Foundation.

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