From: David Cortez <>
Date: Sat, Jan 5, 2019 at 1:01 AM
Subject: Drilling Mora County & Successful Outlaw at SFCIR / Journalism Under Fire

Dear Friends,

It was great to meet you last week! I am sharing information – some current, some older – about my productions. Any thoughts, ideas, or help is appreciated! 

Drilling Mora County was supported by a $10,000 grant from the Max and Anna Levinson Foundation in Santa Fe. The film covers the first county in the US to ban fracking and its lawsuit in Federal Court via interviews with local attorneys, activists, and elected officials. I am proud of the film, as we have had successful screenings throughout the state at venues like The Jean Cocteau in Santa Fe, The Guild Cinema in ABQ, and the Harwood Museum in Taos. Below are links to reportage. 

My next documentary, Successful Outlaw, follows the life of biker, builder and master silversmith, Daniel “Pepe” Rochon,(Trailer) as he builds an off grid, adobe, 4000 square foot, Sonora style hacienda (Foundation Sequence). During the 70’s Pepe lived and worked at the Mabel Dodge Lujan House when Dennis Hopper was owner and is a rare individual who continues to live the ideals of the counter culture crusaders who arrived and started communes in Northern New Mexico in the 60’s (Concho Belts). As a director, I call it “counter cultural preservation.”

My goal is to make a character driven, transcendental documentary that elucidates and expands ones ideas about sustainability and creativity, and the blending of the two. Thus far we have had the help of David Hopper who was Rochon’s partner in building many wonderful adobe structures in the region, the former Return Gallery and the Ed & Trudy Healy home in Arroyo Hondo, NM. Some sequences are better than others, and I am shooting, editing, directing, and producing, pretty much all on my own – it’s why I am reaching out to potential producers like yourself and Raoul Max Trujillo who just produced a film called “The Blessing,” We are also fans of “Along for the Ride.” 

Thanks for your time and have a great week!


David Luis Leal Cortez
(202) 425 – 5435
Photo 2016  by Albert Watson

DRILLING MORA COUNTY  Albuquerque Journal North.

The Taos News,46043

Funding and Partners: The Max & Anna Levinson Foundation working with the Mora County Economic Development Corporation. Other potential partners include The Healy Foundation and a Generosity crowdfunding campaign.

David Luis Leal Cortez. David is a writer, filmmaker and former political operative, who has worked on local, state, and national campaigns. He is from the Washington, DC area and graduated from the College of Santa Fe in Moving Image Arts. He has worked with art collectives like American Dust and Meow Wolf. Recently he has been a contributor to the New Mexican Inquisition, NM’s only source for political satire.

Recent interview with David Luis Leal Cortez on Santa Fe’s KSFR Cinema Scope with Stu Goswick. The show reports on New Mexico based filmmakers.

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