Award-Winning Short Film, Prodigal Son, Now Available on YouTube

Juan Felipe Restrepo’s Prodigal Son won best LGBTQ film at the Los Angeles Film Awards.

LOS ANGELES – July 6, 2020- Juan Felipe Restrepos award-winning short film, Prodigal Son, is now available to stream on YouTube. The film tells the story of a closeted, gay teenager coming out to his conservative, Latino family during a school vacation. It is based on the real experiences of Restrepo’s close, childhood friend, whom he hopes to show support to with this film. Restrepo wrote, produced, and acted in the film, playing the role of Andres, the main character. 

The dramatic film takes audiences through Andres’s life – his emotional journey to reveal his true self and how his life changes instantly with the moment of truth. Restrepo aimed to portray the experience of coming out to family and showcase how it can sometimes be heartbreaking, as it was for his character. “I want to be clear that every experience is different, this didn’t happen to me but to someone who is deeply close to me, and being Latinos, I wanted to find a way through my art to help families realize how their reaction can affect their kids, and for the ones who go through this, show them that even if is difficult, things will get better, so be brave to live as who you are,” Restrepo said.

In 2018, Prodigal Son won best LGBTQ film at the Los Angeles Film Awards. Restrepo dedicated the film to the LGBTQ community, with the hope of bringing awareness to those who are reluctant with coming out or experienced rejection. He also hopes it inspires those who are struggling with their sexuality to be able to build the courage to live as their true selves and develop self-love, acceptance, and respect. In many ways, Restrepo saw the production process as a learning experience. He was able to empathize with the main character and the rejection the protagonist inevitably faced. 

The film explores a different perspective of the stereotypical, on-screen Latino character. Rather than presenting a Latino character as a drug dealer, gangster, lover, or illegal worker, it gives audiences a realistic scenario of the social culture that is prevalent and mostly normalized in Latino countries. Latino characters are also, oftentimes, supporting characters, or simply provide comedic relief in films. Restrepo hopes to see more Latino individuals in leading roles throughout the film industry.

Prodigal Son and Restrepo’s performance has been highly praised since the film’s completion in November of 2016. The film saw great success at many international film festivals and has been awarded the Best Young Actor at the 2018 Actors Awards, Best Actor at the Top Shorts Film Festival, and Best Actor at Festigious International Film Festival, among others. Restrepo hopes to continue using the power of filmmaking for positive change and inspiration to those with similar stories.

For more information about this film, go to, please contact Juan Felipe Restrepo at  [email protected]

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