Anima (film)

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Directed by Erika Grediaga
Produced by José Carlos Mangual
Written by Erika Grediaga
Starring Claudia Soberón,
Carol Abney,
Dennis Deal,
Rick Simon,
Katira Santiago,
Melodee Spevack
Music by Steven Gutheinz
Release date
December 5, 2003 (world premiere, Los Angeles)
Running time
26 minutes

Anima is a 2003 short-film directed and written by Erika Grediaga. Produced by the American Film Institute, it stars Mexican actress Claudia Soberón.

The story is based on some of the legends about monastic life during the colonial period in Latin America.


16th century. The Catholic Church has expanded throughout the new continent, Nueva España. New monasteries are being built, but the missionaries’ Holy cities are threatened by forces unknown: the earth shakes, buildings collapse, nothing is spared. The devout seek protection by strengthening their faith—some even willing to sacrifice themselves.

One hundred years later, poverty forces young Angelica (Claudia Soberón) into God's service against her will. Rebellious, Angelica tries to escape into the outside world—closed behind the convent's doors, sealed by her vows. As punishment, Angelica is confined to her cell where she is haunted by the spirit of Sister Luciana (Katira Santiago). The ghost, a nun entombed one hundred years in the convent walls, compels Angelica to free her trapped soul.

To release Luciana, Angelica will have to persuade the nuns to leave the convent and pray in the open, but to leave the cloister is expressly forbidden.



Anima was produced at the AFI Conservatory in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the Master of Fine Arts Degree or Certificate of Completion. Erika Grediaga (AFI Directing Fellow) Ismail Ahmed (AFI Editing Fellow), James W. Thompson Jr. (AFI Production Design Fellow), Jitsu Toyoda (AFI Cinematography Fellow) and José Carlos Mangual (AFI Producing Fellow) got their master's degree in 2003. Of note, "Anima" means "Soul" in Latin.

Principal Screenings & Festivals[edit]

  • Los Angeles (world premiere) (US premiere)
  • San Diego Latino Film Festival 2004
  • AFI Conservatory Showcase 2004
  • Los Angeles Latino International Film Festival 2004
  • Palm Springs International Short Film Festival 2004
  • Lake Arrowhead Film Festival 2004
  • Montreal Ibero American Film Festival 2004 (Canadian premiere)
  • Trieste Festival of Latin-American Cinema 2004 (European Premiere)
  • Hollywood International Student Film Festival 2005
  • Reel Women International Film Festival 2005
  • Mexico City Horror Film Festival (Latin American premiere)

Awards and nominations[edit]

External links[edit]