Teotl Veliz

Teotl Veliz is an Indigenous Chicano student  documentarian, writer, producer, and founder of Great Nations Pictures from the South Bay of California. Veliz has been a dedicated student of his family’s and local community’s rich storytelling culture from a young age. In his senior year of high school, he won the California State Championship for the National History Day Competition along with his partner Indya Searchwell, representing California nationally in the category of Historical Documentary. His submission: The Tragedy of Terminal Island, has won three awards, which include the and was an official selection for the San Pedro International Film Festival. During this time, Veliz hosted a radio show on 101.5 FM based out of Boyle Heights East Los Angeles, focusing on issues in the immediate Chicano community interviewing guests such as the widely acclaimed author Luis J. Rodriguez. Currently, Veliz is writing and producing a Western comedy anthology series focusing on Indigenous experiences. During his time in University Teotl studied Art History at the University of UC Santa Cruz and is passionate about incorporating Indigenous Art history in his works and events. His biggest goal is expanding native representation and opportunity in the Film Industry and maintaining the story-telling culture his elders have passed onto him. During his summer before college, Veliz was accepted into the Film2Future Grad School Program, where he produced, art directed, and cast an award-winning spot for HULU on the importance of Mental Health in the Latino community, making him one of Hulu’s youngest producers! His biggest goal is expanding Native representation and opportunity in the Film Industry and putting on events. After, Teotl landed a paid internship at the prestigious management/production company Writ Large and has worked with executives, writing script coverage, and learning the representation business’s ins and outs. Currently, Teotl is working on his TV Pilot Red West, an Indigenous comedy western. In 2020 Teotl founded Great Nations Pictures, a film collective dedicated to bringing fantastical ancestral stories to screen. His and Heather Laymans preliminary work on the project has since landed Great Nations awards such as the Watsonville Film Cine Se Puede Fellowship and the Reyna Grande Kresge Scholarship.