Meet Giovanny Canales-Rueda! Canales-Rueda is a senior studying TV production and film at Missouri State University. Through his studies, his passion for film has grown and he hopes to use the medium to tell the stories of his culture.
Canales-Rueda was born in Mexico. At age 2, he and his family immigrated to Missouri.
“At home, you are Mexican learning Spanish and being a part of the Spanish media, and then you go to school and meet friends who grew up here in American culture,” Canales-Rueda said.
Being a child of immigrants forced him to take on more responsibility than the average child. He quickly became the translator and liaison for anything in English for his family.
“Knowing a second language has opened so many doors for me. You are a bridge in a way,” Canales-Rueda said.
His skills have allowed him to bridge the gap between two seemingly different but similar cultures.
“You essentially get to partake in two sides of two cultures and it has its benefits and complications,” Canales-Rueda said.
While being bilingual and partaking in two cultures can seem like a superpower, it comes with its own set of adversities.
Film and culture
Throughout Canales-Rueda’s life, film has inspired him to chase his dreams and tell the stories of his people.
The film directors of “Everywhere All at Once,” Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert, motivate him to tell stories in unique and impactful ways.
“How they tell stories and make it their own is what makes it beautiful,” Canales-Rueda said. “I hope to create stories and films that are particular to me.”
The movie ”Baby Driver” is another film that inspires Canales-Rueda due to its way of incorporating music and storytelling.
“Music in a way is a universal language. Incorporating music of any kind makes it easy for anyone to understand, he said”
Canales-Rueda hopes to use film to amplify the voices of fellow Hispanic and Latino/a/x people and share the work and hardships that come with making America their home.
Making Missouri State University his home
College was always expected of Canales-Rueda since his family sacrificed so much to move to America.
“It was never a matter of are you going to college? It was always, what are you going to go to college for?” Canales-Rueda said.
He knew being a Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipient would require a lot more work than the average student, but he was motivated to further his education.
“I’m doing everything that I can as a DACA recipient to succeed in this life. There’s a lot of sacrifice and hardship that goes with it, but I do it because I want to,” Canales-Rueda said.
He started out studying psychology but soon changed to film after filming quinceañeras and other life events.
“I find beauty in capturing life for what it is.”
Looking to the future
Canales-Rueda is a senior and expects to graduate in December 2022. After graduation, he hopes to travel the world and see where his love for people and film takes him.
His advice for incoming DACA recipients? “Make sure to put yourself out there and develop strong bonds with people of all kinds.”