HBO Nabs Short Film ‘Chico Virtual’ Starring Jaden Michael

HBO has acquired the broadcast rights to “Chico Virtual,” a short film starring Jaden Michael (“Colin in Black & White,” “Harlan Coben’s Shelter”). Written and directed by first-time filmmaker Olivia De Camps, “Chico Virtual” will premiere on HBO and stream on Max Sept. 18.

The film follows Javier (Michael), a young Dominican American boy who dreams of becoming a viral sensation, and hides that fact from his immigrant parents, played by Maite Bonilla and Fidel Vicioso. Per the official logline, “When Javier’s older brother is late to Javier’s graduation night after a job interview, the family starts to assume their worst fear has finally become a reality. The prospect leads to a direct confrontation between Javier’s emblematic online and at-home personas, forcing the teenager to confront the grim reality of being an undocumented immigrant in America.”

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Produced by Tom Sidi and Ori Chevio, “Chico Virtual” was a winner in the 2022 HBO Max Latino Short Film Competition and the Best Drama & Audience Award prizes at Chicago International Film Festival’s CineYouth program.

“I am deeply honored that ‘Chico Virtual’ is now a part of HBO’s incredible film collection. We are thrilled to join the HBO family, and most especially to have the ability to reach an audience we never expected to have access to ‘Chico Virtual,'” said De Camps. “Our film started as a labor of love, with a handful of passionate, independent young filmmakers. To be able to share our story with people all over the world is more than we could have ever hoped for.”

Producers Chevio and Sidi added: “We couldn’t be more thrilled that ‘Chico Virtual’ has found its way to HBO. The acquisition strongly emphasizes HBO’s commitment to valuing diverse and timely stories told by emerging young filmmakers. We are extremely excited to partner with Warner Bros. Discovery in bringing this important film to audiences.”

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