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Chelsea Hernandez is an award-winning Mexican-American filmmaker based in Austin, Texas also the 2019 EPFF Documentary and Grand Prize Winner for her feature documentary Building the American Dream. Her work focuses on the unique perspectives of various issues and topics through the lens of ordinary people who challenge the status quo and injustices in this world. She is a fellow of Firelight Media Doc Lab and Latino Media Market.
Chelsea received a B.S. from the University of Texas, the first in her Latino family to achieve a college degree. She was hired as Associate Producer and Assistant Editor on PBS national broadcast special, Fixing the Future, hosted by David Brancaccio of NPR’s Marketplace, directed by Ellen Spiro (Body of War, Troop 1500) and national 6-part series Ancient Roads from Christ to Constantine directed by Hector Galan (Children of Giant, Chicano).
Beyond television work, Chelsea has directed and produced various documentary films including the Austin Film Festival Best Short Documentary Winner, See the Dirt. The film also premiered internationally at the oldest film festival in the world, the Edinburgh International Film Festival. Most recently, Chelsea co-directed a short documentary, An Uncertain Future, for Field of Vision & Firelight Media’s web series “Our 100 Days.”
Along with streaming online, the film has screened at film festivals across the country, winning awards at SXSW, Aspen ShortsFest, Dallas International Film Festival and CineFestival, to name a few. The film was also selected as a Vimeo staff pick and has drawn over 25,000 plays. Chelsea is a NALIP (National Association of Latino Independent Producers) member, Latino Media Market fellow, Firelight Media Doc Lab Fellow, Tribeca Storylab Fellow, Tribeca All Access Recipient, BAVC National Mediamaker Fellow and 2018 IRP Workshop Participant. Building the American Dream is her feature directorial debut.