photo of Ernesto Cabellos Damian

Mr Ernesto Cabellos Damian

Post:School Tutor (Media and Film)
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Ernesto Cabellos is an award-winning Peruvian filmmaker and educator with over 25 years of experience in documentary filmmaking. He has written, directed, and produced numerous feature-length and short documentaries that have received international acclaim, winning over 50 awards from major international film festivals and being broadcast on platforms like Netflix and Sundance TV. His films explore the representation of indigenous worldview in documentary filmmaking to achieve social change, and are currently studied at top universities including UCL, Warwick, and Cornell.

Ernesto co-founded Guarango Films in 1994, a non-profit film organisation based in his hometown of Lima dedicated to produce films for social change. In Guarango, Ernesto has directed the feature documentary films Choropampa, The Price of Gold (2002), Tambogrande: Mangos, Murder, Mining (2007), and produced The Devil Operation (2010). All of these films received support and had their world premieres at IDFA, the largest documentary film festival in the world.

His film Daughter of the Lake (2015) was selected for competition at Hot Docs, the largest documentary film festival and market in North America. The film attracted the interest of Netflix, which streamed the film worldwide for three years. Daughter of the Lake tells the story of Nelida, an Andean woman able to communicate with water spirits and joins a struggle to prevent a mining corporation from destroying her community's lakes.

Ernesto's body of work challenges hegemonic neo-colonial narratives and powerful interests, offering a counter-narrative that highlights the culture and resilience of indigenous communities. 

In 2019, Ernesto co-directed the award-wining documentary Until the Last Drop, which explores the lives of Palestinian and Israeli farmers in the Jordan Valley. The film, produced by Reelmedia, a Brighton-based film company, been distributed by Journeyman Pictures.

In 2022, Ernesto served as executive producer for the award-wining feature-length documentary Wändari, which addresses social and environmental conflicts in the Amazon from the perspective of native communities. Please, watch the trailer here.

Throughout his career, Ernesto has actively engaged in education and outreach, sharing his experience with students through lectures, seminars and practical sessions, as well as public conferences and screenings. Over the past five years, Ernesto has taught both theoretical modules in Film Studies, and practical modules in Media Production and Filmmaking at School of Art and Humanities at the University of Sussex. Additionally, in 2023, he served as a Lecturer in Media at the University of Brighton. During the 2020/22, Ernesto taught modules for the Media Practice for Development and Social Change MA, and developed interactive modules for the Media, Ethics and Social Change MA (online), in collaboration with Pearson and Sussex’s experts.

He has also been invited to deliver masterclasess at renowned universities, including Princeton, Cornell, NYU, UCL, and Warwick.



School Tutor (Media and Film)