On The Cusp, Longlist - Personal

90 Brothers

Juan Felipe Zuleta

First Threshold / Harlem Roots

90 Brothers is a (documentary) story about the families we choose — in this case, out on the football field. From the start, we knew that we wanted to break the traditional documentary format in telling the unique narrative of the team. Accordingly, we avoided "talking head" interviews in favor of focusing on our characters in their day-to-day routines; from training to the game itself. Like a fly on the wall, we wanted to depict this family of choice as they typically exist, without dramatic interference. The end result is a more poetic, free-flowing, visually-driven depiction of a marginalized community that fights against all the odds through discipline, unity, and indomitable will. By the end of the film, it doesn't really matter that the Knights lose their shot at the championship. Ultimately, they are all winning, as a community that loves and supports one another - both on the field and off.

A Colombian-born NYU Tisch graduate, Director / Writer / Producer Juan Felipe tells deeply human stories across genres and tones. He often explores the underdogs' perspective, especially when facing down a particular life challenge. He likes to play with ambiguity in cinema, giving audiences the power to use their imaginations. He won a Cannes Silver Lion for his work on the No-More-Mayo Campaign for Miracle Whip, and was recently shortlisted for a Young Director Award from Cannes. He is also a recipient of the NYU Richard Vague Production Fund Award. Based in New York but traveling to wherever his projects take him, Juan Felipe has directed and produced short films, music videos, and dozens of narrative commercials for global corporations. He also co-founded First Threshold, in which he develops and produces both short and feature films, as well as TV scripts and other media projects. He is currently in post-production for an Indie feature films called "Unidentified Objects" (filmed in August 2020), and in pre-production for another Indie feature called "Frontera" (filming in 2021).