Hanson Dialogues with Moctesuma Esparza and Peter Murrieta
HANSON DIALOGUES, a brand new conversation series, DEBUTS with

A Conversation on Diversity and Opportunity in Hollywood

with Film and TV Producer Moctesuma Esparza

Friday April 29, 2016
7–8:30pm FREE

Fox Tucson Theatre
17 W Congress St, Tucson

The Hanson Film Institute debuts its brand new conversation series HANSON DIALOGUES, with top talents and creators in the Film and Television Industry and moderated by Tucson native, UA alumnus and Emmy Award winning producer and humorist Peter Murrieta. Murrieta will talk with some of the most influential producers, directors and actors working today. Audience members will be encouraged to contribute comments and questions.

Moctesuma Esparza filmsDiversity in Hollywood is not just about the Oscars. Join us April 29 as Peter Murrieta engages in a lively conversation with Academy Award-nominated film and TV producer, entrepreneur and activist Moctesuma Esparza, ​who has devoted his 40-year film career to empowering and transforming the images of minorities in Hollywood. Hear behind-the-scenes stories of his films SELENA, starring Jennifer Lopez in her breakout role, THE MILAGRO BEANFIELD WAR, directed by Robert Redford, INTRODUCING DOROTHY DANDRIDGE, starring Halle Berry, and WALKOUT, directed by Edward James Olmos, among many others.

Hanson Film Institute director Vicky Westover said, “In an age when we’re absorbed with technology, there’s a great need for civil discourse and interaction with others. The Hanson Dialogues will focus on film, TV and culture – elements that are so much a part of our lives. We’re delighted to be teaming up with UA alum Peter Murrieta to launch the Hanson Film Institute’s newest program, and our inaugural guest will address an important topic – the need for diversity in Hollywood to accurately reflect American society.”

The Hanson Film Institute is proud to present the first episode of this new series with support from the UA College of Fine Arts, Cox Communications and Film Tucson, and community partners the Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, the Tucson Urban League, and the UA Confluencenter for Creative Inquiry, and media sponsor The Arizona Daily Star. Hanson Dialogues are free events and open to the public.

Moctesuma Esparza

Moctesuma Esparza

An award-winning producer, entertainment executive, entrepreneur and community activist, Moctesuma Esparza is well known for his contributions to the movie industry and commitment to creating opportunities for Latinos everywhere. A partner in the highly successful Esparza-Katz Productions with Robert Katz, he has worked with stars such as Robert Redford, Jennifer Lopez, Andy Garcia, Jimmy Smits, Martin Sheen, Robert Duvall and Halle Berry. An early agitator for Mexican American civil rights, Mr. Esparza was a member of the East LA Thirteen, the organizers of the 1968 walkouts of thousands of high-school students protesting academic prejudice and dire school conditions. His recent film – WALKOUT, for HBO – was a dramatic reenactment of those events.

Moctesuma Esparza, unidentified, Gregory Nava, Carlos Santana, Edward James Olmos
L-R: Moctesuma Esparza, unidentified, Gregory Nava, Carlos Santana, Edward James Olmos

Other films produced by Esparza in a career spanning more than 40 years include PRICE OF GLORY (2000), INTRODUCING DOROTHY DANDRIDGE (1999), SELMA, LORD, SELMA (1998), SELENA (1997), THE DISAPPEARANCE OF GARCIA LORCA (1997), GETTYSBURG (1993) and THE MILAGRO BEANFIELD WAR (1988) among others. In addition to his film trajectory, Moctesuma established Maya Cinemas, a growing chain of modern movie theatre mega-plexes committed to providing the highest quality movie-going experience in new and redeveloping market areas with a strong Latino presence. Moctesuma’s numerous awards and honors include an Academy Award nomination, a Golden Globe nomination, an Emmy award, a Clio award, an Alma award, a Cine Golden Eagle award, and a Lifetime Achievement award from the Imagen Foundation.

Moctesuma Esparza on the set of THE MILAGRO BEANFIELD WAR in 1987
Moctesuma Esparza on the set of THE MILAGRO BEANFIELD WAR in 1987

Peter Murrieta

Peter Murrieta, moderator of Hanson Dialogues

Two-time Emmy Award winning producer/writer Peter Murrieta is a versatile performer, producer and writer. His roots, grounded in improv and sketch comedy, have established him as an executive producer and show runner for the live-action series for Cartoon Network Level Up, and for Disney Channel’s WIZARDS OF WAVERLY PLACE. Murrieta’s Disney Channel franchise WIZARDS OF WAVERLY PLACE and the network’s telefilm WIZARDS OF WAVERLY PLACE THE MOVIE were nominated for a total of three Emmy Awards. Murrieta took home the award for Outstanding Children’s Programming for his work on WIZARDS OF WAVERLY PLACE THE MOVIE in 2010 and for the series in 2009. Murrieta got his start at Second City in Chicago as an improv/sketch comedian, and after moving to Los Angeles earned a coveted writing fellowship from Walt Disney Television. That led to writing stints for JESSE, THREE SISTERS and ALL ABOUT THE ANDERSONS before creating the critically acclaimed GREETINGS FROM TUCSON, which was based on his own experiences growing up in Tucson. Recently he was a producer and writer on ABC’s comedy half-hour comedy CHRISTELA. Murrieta is currently a writer for the Netflix series ONE DAY AT A TIME, a Latino remake of Norman Lear’s classic sitcom, starring Rita Moreno.

Presented by Hanson Dialogues

Hanson Dialogues

Share on FacebookShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedIn