If you’re a fan of film or participant in fan boy culture odds are you have come across Latino-Review.com in some form or fashion. What started out, as a small movie fan site has become an authority in the worlds of film and journalism serving as a source of breaking news about upcoming films. And if you’ve been following the headlines recently, you know all about the “overnight success” of Latino-Review.com. The indie movie site was recently acquired by former Chrysler CEO Robert Nardelli. The result, increased prominence and additional funds to continue its mission to create and push out Latino-themed entertainment content. This, of course, is a huge victory for the man behind it all, editor-in-chief and co-founder Kellvin Chavez, who literally started the site in his back room over 15 years ago. We had the chance to talk with Kellvin about this pivotal accomplishment and all of the blood, sweat and tears that went into making Latino-Review.com one of the most desirable sites on the Internet.
‘LL: Congratulations are definitely in order for you and the team behind Latino-Review. How does it feel to be partners with one of the industry’s top businessmen?
Kellvin: You know, I owned this site for 15 years and I was always very protective of it. The thing I liked about this deal is the fact that the essence of the site will stay the same. That is key. I will remain on board, but now I have the chance to grow and grow and grow. I have the funds to make this thing even bigger.
‘LL: People don’t realize how long you’ve actually been doing this for. What are the origins behind Latino-Review?
Kellvin: I started it as a one-man-machine back in 2000. It actually began as a hobby. I used to work on Wall Street and did this on the side. Then it just kept getting bigger. Nine years ago is when I left my day job to do it full-time.
‘LL: Did you have a vision in mind when you launched it?
Kellvin: My goal was to cater to the English-dominant Latinos. People like myself. That’s how I got the concept of “Latino-Review.” I thought of it as the American Latino perspective on films. That and the fact that I’ve always been a huge movie fan.
‘LL: How about all of the logistics. Were you connected to film studios? Did you have a web design background?
Kellvin: Nope. I was very passionate though and I think that’s key to getting something like this off the ground. I just started getting on newspaper lists for early screenings so I could write reviews. Then I began meeting people and making more connections. Someone in the media gave me some recommendations about starting a site. After that, I literally bought Dreamweaver For Dummies and began building things from scratch.