NEW YORK, USA // Kristian Mercado Figueroa (Director, Writer) is a Puerto Rican filmmaker living in Spanish Harlem whose music-driven short film Pa’lante won the SXSW Jury Award 2019. Mercado has directed content for Billie Eilish, Awkwafina, Bad Bunny, and Adult Swim, among others. He’s also directed comedy specials for Hannibal Buress and SNL's Sam Jay for NETFLIX. His work was official selection at SXSW 2020 with both a video for the Grammy-nominated Black Pumas and Hannibal’s Miami Nights.
His latest short film Mariposa and Black Pumas is touring 2020 festivals now. Previously, his screenplay for the short HawkBells received a screenwriting award from Slamdance. Recently his screenplay MELA was the recipient of a Cinereach grant. Mercado’s distinct voice addresses issues of identity, family, and systemic oppression across race and class. His work is celebrated for its portrayal of working class struggles, highlighting love and loss.