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Following Eric Garner’s death in 2014, an Afro-Latinx teen struggles with her immigrant parents to understand the nuances of their racial identities within the African-American and Afro-Latinx landscape.

Nolwen Cifuentes is a photographer and director born and raised in the suburbs of Southern California, based in Los Angeles. As a first generation mixed race queer woman her identity plays a huge role in the narratives she delves into within her work. Ebany is Nolwen's fourth short film, named after her cousin. The film follows the story of a young Afro-latina in 2014 following the public death of Ertic Garner and the culture of surrounding interracial family dynamics in a Colombian family. The film follows the questions surrounding what it’s like to experience the world as a black Colombian woman and to have two first generation Colombian parents of different races who are oblivious to systemic racism that their daughter is well aware of in their community. The death of Eric Garner provokes the family into having difficult conversations involving the nuances and vastness of their family unit and racial and cultural identities.

Nolwen Cifuentes "This film is very close to my heart. Ebany is my cousin, and Ebany’s mother, Liliana, is my father’s sister. Both her parents in the film are playing a version of themselves. I’m a white passing Colombiana, and I can see the vast differences of my experience in the world as a Latina versus what my black cousin experiences. Ebany and I had conversations about how her own parents had views and experiences that were vastly different than what she experienced in her racial identity. So many film about the Latinx experience that I’ve seen have felt very generic and haven’t explored the diverse landscape of what being Latinx really looks like. I wanted to create a film that talks about a side of latinidad that we haven’t explored much yet.

Our decision to base the film in 2014 was because it was a time when BLM and stories on police brutality were not as recognized. Basing the film in the present would not have felt right with her parents not understanding the racial oppression happening in America. 2014 was the start of the rise of BLM as a mainstream group and we wanted this film to live in that world. “Ebany” was 100% improvised, and the cast are all non-actors. They’re all my real family filmed in their home. I wanted to make this film as real, raw and honest as possible."


Director - @nolwencif

DP - @tammy

Composer - @blaire_michael

Editor - @owendubeck

Sound Design - @zhoutato

Colorist - @sderlug

Boom Op/Sound Mixer - @biabaer

Gaffer - @dadhatadventures

1st AC - @olarmarco

Ebany Palacios
Liliana Cifuentes Palacios
Fredy Palacios
Jorena Coxey