Mexican directors, actress create fund for cinema workers

Entertainment

FILE – This three photo combo shows Director Alejandro González Iñárritu at the awards ceremony at the 63rd international film festival, in Cannes, southern France, Sunday, May 23, 2010, left, actress Salma Hayek during a photocall at the 70th International Film Festival, Berlinale, in Berlin, Germany, Wednesday, Feb. 26, 2020, center, and Director Guillermo Del Toro during the 17th Marrakech International Film Festival, in Marrakech, Morocco, Saturday, Dec.8, 2018. Del Toro and González Iñárritu joined Hayek on Thursday, June 11, 2020, to set up a fund to help support movie industry workers out of work due to the coronavirus pandemic. (AP Photo/File)

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Oscar-winning Mexican directors Guillermo del Toro and Alejandro González Iñárritu joined actress Salma Hayek to set up a fund to help support movie industry workers out of work due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Mexican Academy of Cinema Arts and Sciences announced the fund Thursday. González Iñárritu spoke via a video call.

“This was an act of solidarity with our colleagues in this industry, without asking anybody else besides ourselves,” González Iñárritu said.

The fund has raised about $440,000 so far, and more donations are expected. Each beneficiary will get a one-time payment of about $885.

The money will go first to technical workers like set, costume, sound and visual employees left without work after most productions stopped filming amid the pandemic. First in line will be those who are suffering health problems or who are sole breadwinners.

La Corriente del Golfo, a company founded by Gael García Bernal and Diego Luna, also contributed to the fund, as did many other Mexican and international production companies.

The Academy estimates that about 30,000 movie production workers have lost their incomes as a result of the industry shut-down.

The government and industry leaders have not announced any date for resuming production.

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