Viva Tortuga: Meshing Conservation and Culture in Magdalena Bay (Mexico, USA, 17min)
Directed by: Maria Luskay
Written by: Louis Guarneri
This year's filmmaking team ventured to Magdalena Bay, an 870 square mile haven for whales, dolphins, sea birds and five species of sea turtles tucked along the Pacific coast of Mexico's Baja peninsula north of the tourist hub of Cobo San Lucas, Mexico. The documentary chronicles how communities that once depended on sea turtle poaching and other extractive activities depleting the region's rich natural resources are now testing with a economic model, one build around conservation and sustainable tourism. The short film provided an intimate portrait of those working to balance economic advancement with environmental protection and striving to create a better life for both the community and endangered sea turtles.