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AURORA, Ill. — As we celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month, we take a look at the contributions by Latinos in our community.  This time the story took us to Aurora, about 40 miles from Chicago.

Zachary Laoutides and Monica Leon have created the only Latino film studio in the Chicago area and have already developed and released two movies that were filmed in Aurora.

Laoutides says their success is partly due to community involvement. The community performed and participated in the film.  “It’s a new method of film making,” Laoutides says.  “They actually called it La Raza style of film making.”

The project started when Monica and Zachary started doing community outreach projects.  Through the stories they heard, Zachary created a screenplay and titled it “Adios, Vaya Con Dios.”  They now have a second movie titled, “When My Eyes Go Dark.”

For information on the Latino film projects go to