More than 250 women have been murdered on the US-Mexico border town of Ciudad Juárez. Their deaths remain a mystery, their histories almost completely erased. Like most women living in Juárez, many of the victims were factory workers employed at multinational plants known as maquiladoras.  As the violence escalates, the international community has continued to ignore what is arguably one of the most overlooked human rights issue today.

Academy Award nominated filmmaker, Lourdes Portillo, gives voice to the lost women of Juárez in her latest critically-acclaimed documentary SENORITA EXTRAVIADA, MISSING YOUNG WOMAN. Recipient of the Special Jury Prize in Documentary at the 2002 Sundance Film Festival, this gripping and emotionally charged film makes its television debut on the PBS series, P.O.V., Tuesday, August 20 (check local listings).

Visually poetic, yet unflinching in its gaze, SENORITA EXTRAVIADA unravels the layers of complicity that have allowed these murders to continue. Dubbed the "City of the Future" by pro-NAFTA advocates, Ciudad Juárez has served as an economic and urban model for developing nations throughout Latin American. Yet behind the city's international mystique and high profile job market, there exists a murky history of grossly underreported human rights abuses and violence against women. Relying on what Portillo comes to see as the most reliable of sources-the testimonies of the families of the victims- SENORITA EXTRAVIADA documents a two-year search for the truth in the underbelly of the new global economy.


        ** SEE THE FILM
        P.O.V., Tuesday, August 20

        Alert your friends and colleagues to the broadcast via email, newsletter announcements, and     web site links.

        ** ACT NOW
        Visit Lourdes Portillo's site

For a schedule of P.O.V. programs on your local PBS station, visit  For sales and rental information on SENORITA EXTRAVIADA, please visit the Women Make Movies on-line catalogue and website  at

SENORITA EXTRAVIADA is part of a growing collection of films and videos by and about Latina and Latin American women. Also part of this unique series is ESCUELA by Hannah Weyer, the award-winning documentary that poignantly profiles the struggles and triumphs of a young Mexican-American migrant farmworker, which airs on P.O.V. August 27.

Established in 1972 to address the under-representation and misrepresentation of women in the media, Women Make Movies is the largest distributor of women's films and videos in the world.  Women Make Movies launched its 30th Anniversary at the Sundance Film Festival earlier this year (  The year-long series of events will celebrate the diversity, vitality, quality and breadth of creativity in WMM's catalogue of more than 500 films and videotapes.  Anniversary festivities will consist of extensive exhibitions and retrospectives, both domestic and international; premiere screenings of new releases in upcoming festivals; and participation in noteworth academic conferences.

Screen-L is sponsored by the Telecommunication & Film Dept., the
University of Alabama: