Kristal Sotomayor is a bilingual Latinx documentary filmmaker, festival programmer, and freelance journalist based in Philadelphia, PA.
Kristal practices transformative filmmaking that humanizes and validates the lived experiences of underrepresented communities. They are in post-production on Expanding Sanctuary which began through the Film Scholars Fellowship with Scribe Video Center. They are a 2020 If/Then North Shorts Fellowship, 2020 DCTV Docu Work-In-Progress Lab, 2020 Justice For My Sister Sci-Fi Screenwriting Lab Fellow, 2019 Good Pitch Local: Philadelphia grantee, 2018 Leeway Foundation Art & Change grantee, and 2017 NeXtDoc Fellow.
Drawing inspiration from their Peruvian heritage, Kristal’s community-based work practice focuses on Latinidad, immigration, and belonging. Formerly, Kristal was the Communications and Outreach Coordinator at Scribe Video Center.
They serve as the Programming Director of the Philadelphia Latino Film Festival and have assisted with curation for the “Spotlight on Documentaries” at IFP Week, Camden International Film Festival, Philadelphia Film Festival, and the award-winning PBS documentary series POV | American Documentary.
Kristal is an awardee of the Sundance Institute’s Press Inclusion Initiative, Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) Press Inclusion Initiative, AARP Freelance Fellowship at NLGJA | The Association of LGBTQ Journalists, the inaugural International Documentary Association (IDA) Magazine Editorial Fellowship, and a Lenfest Next Generation Fund awardee. Kristal is a member of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists (NAHJ) and TIME’S UP Critical Database.
They are a Co-Founder and journalist for ¡Presente! Media, a creative collective and production cooperative led by Latinx filmmakers that produce bilingual content focused on social justice. Kristal’s journalistic background includes having written for ITVS, AL DÍA, Autostraddle, WHYY, The Points Guy, Submittable and Documentary Magazine.
If/Then, Points North, LEF Foundation, and Screening Room North Shorts Residency and Grant
Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) Press Inclusion Initiative
NALIP Emerging Content Creators Scholarship
Double Exposure Film Festival Scholarship
2020 & 2018
Scribe Video Center Philadelphia Independent Media Finishing Fund
Leeway Foundation Arts & Change Grant
Scribe Video Center co-presented by the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences Film Scholar Program
DCTV Docu Work-In-Progress Lab
NBC University Visual Storytelling During Breaking News
NLGJA | The Association of LGBTQ Journalists AARP Freelance Fellowship
Temple Contemporary at the Tyler School of Art and Architecture supported by The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts The Velocity Fund
Doc Society’s Good Pitch Local: Philadelphia Media Maker Grant
HCAH Flaherty Seminar Student Fellowship
Bryn Mawr College Film Studies Department Film Studies Fellowship
Haverford College Digital Storytelling Workshop
Sundance Film Institute Press Inclusion Initiative
International Documentary Association (IDA) Documentary Magazine Editorial Fellowship
Justice For My Sister Black, Indigenous, People of Color Sci-Fi Screenwriting Lab
Lenfest Institute For Journalism Next Generation Fund
Doc Society’s Good Pitch Local: Philadelphia Media Maker Presenter
2020 & 2018
Public Radio Exchange (PRX) Podcasting for Journalists Intensive
Youth Fx & The Carey Institute NextDoc Fellowship