The Low End Theory
FRANCISCO ORDONEZ (Director-Writer)
Born and raised in Queens, Francisco graduated with a BA in Sociology from City University of New York. He then earned his MFA in Film Directing at Columbia University, where he was honored as a Film Division Fellow. Francisco's thesis film, ST. PAUL, has won numerous awards, including Best Short at the HBO New York Latino Film Festival, and the IFP Audience Award. His second short, COOKIE, premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival, and was a Finalist in the NBC Universal Shortcuts Film Festival. Francisco has also directed commercials and industrials for agencies such as Cline Davis and Mann (CDMi), Euro RSCG and Brand Addict. Francisco has a history of working with a trusted ensemble of filmmakers, including frequent collaborators Sofia Yepes and Rene Rosado, and has long prioritized the promotion and empowerment of the storytelling community around him.
DANIEL RAGUSSIS - (Producer)
Daniel wrote, directed and produced his first feature, IMPERIUM, starring Daniel Radcliffe and Toni Collette, which was released by Lionsgate and became a New York Times Critics’ Pick; Entertainment Weekly hailed it as “a tense, chilling thriller... Radcliffe is brilliant.” He is the founder of Notes for Execs, a workshop that helps development professionals give better notes to screenwriters, and has served clients from Disney, Fox, Warner Brothers, Universal, and Netflix; he has been Head of Development at Lucas Foster's ANVL Entertainment since 2019; and he is the founder and CEO of Atomic Features, a production company and film fund based in Los Angeles and New York. Prior to filmmaking, he founded a highly successful marketing consultancy for Fortune 500 clients, including AOL, DHL, Fannie Mae, and Verizon.
SOFIA YEPES - “Raquel” (Story by-Actor-Producer)
Sofia Yepes was born in Medellin Colombia and grew up in Queens, New York. Her acting debut was in Francisco’s award-winning film ST. PAUL, where she tackled the role of a young pregnant teenager. After studying at Long Island University, Sofia advanced her craft with training at T. Schreiber Studios, which boasts alumni Edward Norton, Maria Bello, and Peter Sarsgaard. Sofia then went on to complete the 2-year intensive program at the Ruskin School of Acting in Santa Monica, where she worked with artistic directors Mike Meyers and John Ruskin. Most recently Sofia appeared as a co-star on the acclaimed Showtime series, RAY DONOVAN. Prior to that, she co-starred in the theater production, DANNY AND THE DEEP BLUE SEA, at The Los Angeles Theatre Center.
SUSAN SHOPMAKER - (Casting Director)
MATTHEW LESSALL - (Casting Director)
Susan Shopmaker is one of independent film's most respected casting directors, with over 20 years of feature film credits to her name. She recently cast the hit film SOUND OF METAL (with new discovery and Academy Award nominee Paul Raci), as well as THE CARD COUNTER (starring Oscar Isaac and Willem Dafoe) and FIRST REFORMED (starring Ethan Hawke), both directed by Paul Schrader (TAXI DRIVER, RAGING BULL). She has had multiple Sundance breakout hits, and has received 10 nominations for the CSA (Casting Society of America) Artios award, the highest honor available to a casting director, winning twice. Her frequent casting partner Matthew Lessall was the former president of the CSA, and has himself been nominated for 8 Artios awards, winning twice. His recently cast films include THE NOVICE, which won Best Actress and Best Narrative Feature at the Tribeca Film Festival and sold to IFC Films, and the Sundance hit DEIDRA & LANEY ROB A TRAIN, which was nominated for the festival's Best of Next Award. Together, Susan and Matthew cast CHRONIC (starring Tim Roth), which won the Palme D'Or at the Cannes Film Festival, and the previous Atomic Features film IMPERIUM, which starred Daniel Radcliffe, Toni Collette, Tracy Letts, and Sam Trammell.
RENE ROSADO - "Efraim" (Actor-Associate Producer)
Currently, Rene is a season regular on the hit ABC show, "The Conners." Prior to that, Rene was a season regular on the TNT series, Major Crimes, where for 4 seasons he has received acclaim for his portrayal of Gus Wallace. Major Crimes has a viewership of 10 million viewers worldwide including The U.S., Canada, Japan, Most of Europe and Latin America.
Rising TV and film star, Rene Rosado, began his film career in the Columbia University Thesis film, “St. Paul.” Since then Rene has gone on to star in various films, FILLY BROWN (2012), BADSVILLE (2017), BAD IMPULSE (2018) and television shows including The Sopranos, Code Black, Criminal Minds and Training Day.
RICKY RUSSERT - "Larry" (Actor-Co-Producer)
Ricky's recent film credits include QUEEN BEES, THE RAVINE, R#J, and of course his iconic portrayal of Shane Stant in the Oscar-winning film I, TONYA, which was released by Neon and earned three Oscar nominations at the 2018 Academy Awards.
Ricky began acting in his sophomore year of college, turning down a baseball scholarship to enroll in the theater department at Washington State University, where he toplined their productions of "The Shape of Things," "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof," "Fool For Love," and played Iago in "Othello." On television, Russert has been the guest star on various projects including MACGYVER, THE WALKING DEAD, OUTER BANKS, and two seasons on the Cinemax show, BANSHEE.
EDDIE MARTINEZ - "Uly" - (Actor-Associate Producer)
Currently, Eddie stars as ex-Marine and rising star detective Vic Soto in the USA Network series THE SINNER, where he appears alongside veteran film and television stars Bill Pullman and Chris Messina.
Eddie began his acting career in college when he auditioned for a school play and landed the lead role. Since then Eddie has made appearances in WEEDS, ORANGE IS THE NEW BLACK, NARCOS: MEXICO, and NCIS: LOS ANGELES. His film credits include the critically acclaimed A BETTER LIFE, directed by Chris Weitz, THE NIGHT STALKER, starring Lou Diamond Phillips, and BEL CANTO, starring Julianne Moore. Most recently, Eddie starred in the Amazon feature film, KILL CHAIN, alongside Nicholas Cage.
SCOTTY TOVAR "Nico" - (Actor)
Scotty is an actor known for EMPIRE (2015), THE MOSQUITO COAST (2021), and AFTER THE REIGN (2020). Scotty recently wrapped a heavy recurring role on the new Apple+ series MOSQUITO COAST opposite Justin Theroux. He has also recurred on THE MISSION for ABC and TOO OLD TO DIE YOUNG for Amazon. In 2018 he appeared in the film CITY OF LIES, with Johnny Depp and Forest Whitaker. Scotty’s TV credits also include CHANCE, John Wells’ ANIMAL KINGDOM, ABC Family’s THE FOSTERS, ROSEWOOD, and WICKED CITY.
JUAN GIL - (Associate Producer)
Juan Gil is Latino Writer/Director living in Los Angeles. He graduated from Texas Tech University with a Bachelor's in Media Production and Communication with a certificate in Entertainment Media. He has served as Writer, Director, Producer, and 1st Assistant Director for various films within the Assorted Kinds Filmmaking Collective. Juan has also won various awards for his productions at festivals such as the World-Fest Houston International Film Festival, the American Advertising Awards, the South Central Broadcasting Society, the New York International Film Festival, and many more. He has also served as a Media Producer and Documentarian for brands and organizations such as PBS, Pepsi, The Latin Grammys, Hispanicize, Prudential, CIEN+, and Weight Watchers.
“st. paul” Honors and Awards
– Best Short Film - Imagen Awards
– Best Short HBO New York International Latino Film Festival
– IFP Audience Award - Columbia University Film Festival
– 2nd Place - National Assoc. of Latino Independent Producers (NALIP)
“Cookie” Screenings & Honors
– NBC Universal Shortcuts - Finalist
– Official Selection, Tribeca Film Festival
– DVD & Internet rights sold to Clarendon Entertainment
ASHER Screenplay Honors
– Finalist, Tribeca Film Festival All Access
– Participant, NALIP Media Market
– Faculty Honors, Columbia University School of the Arts
– IFP Audience Award