Jayro Bustamante

Jayro Bustamante is a Guatemalan film director, producer and screenwriter, born and raised in a Maya community on the shores of Lake Atitlán. He studied Social Communication at San Carlos de Guatemala University. After graduating, he began working in publicity at Ogilvy & Mather.

In 2002 he decided to move to Paris, France, where he studied film directing at the Conservatoire Libre du Cinéma Français. He further pursued studies in screenwriting in Rome, Italy, at the Centro Sperimentale di Cinematografía.

In 2009 he and Marina Peralta started their own production company in Guatemala, La Casa de Producción. In 2015 he directed and produced his first feature film, Ixcanul, which won him the Silver Bear at the Berlinale and more than 60 other awards in international festivals.

In 2013 he opened an acting academy, and in 2016 founded a department for film distribution and a talent agency. In 2017 he opened La Sala de Cine, the first cinema space dedicated to independent film in Guatemala. In 2018 he founded his French production company Les Films Du Volcan, with the purpose of co-producing films between Europe and Latin America. That same year, the Senate of the Republic of France awarded him a medal of honor for creating cultural ties between France and Guatemala.

He also established Fundación Ixcanul in 2018, a non-profit organization dedicated to bringing cultural and educational content to all of Guatemala. Bustamante also produced and directed his second film, Temblores, which opened at the 2019 Berlinale. This film received an award from the Fondation Gan pour le Cinéma of France, as well as several more international accolades.


In the second half of 2019 his third film, La Llorona, premiered in Venice, winning the Giornate degli Autori award for Best Director, and in America at the Toronto International Film Festival. La Llorona was the first Central American film to be nominated for a Golden Globe and to be included in the Oscar Academy Awards shortlist. In 2020 he co-produced Guatemalan filmmaker Sergio Ramírez’s second film, 1991, which premiered at the Miami Film Festival; and the opera prima of Argentine director Federico Schmukler, Felipe.


In 2021 he directed and produced his fourth film, Rita, and in 2022 his fifth, Cordillera de Fuego. Early in 2023 he directed the series pilot episode of The Border for FX. Presently he is also writing for Apple TV, a new series called The Hacienda.


Feature-length Films

  • Cordillera de Fuego (2022 pendiente premiere)
  • Rita (2021 pendiente premiere)
  • La llorona (2019)
  • Temblores (2019)
  • Ixcanul (2015)

Short Films

  • Cuando sea grande (2012)
  • Caras de una ciudad (2011)
  • Usted (2009)
  • Tout Est Question de Fringues (2006)

Awards and Nominations​