Latino TV Producer/Director Puts Spotlight on Health


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Rick Carrillo
Rick Carrillo is a native of Weslaco, Texas.

In the movie The Killing Strain, Juan “Rick” Carrillo plays a soldier who escapes a helicopter crash to lead a small group of flu-epidemic survivors to safety.

On screen, he was a tough, nothing-can-stop-him hero.

Off screen, though, Carrillo struggled fighting the elements—mountain cedar had him blowing his nose, taking antihistamines and using his inhaler between takes.

“I wasn’t feeling 100%, but the scenes captured during filming were very effective in telling the story of this gutsy soldier,” Carrillo said. “This always reminds me the great power a camera has on creating a world for audiences to absorb and be part of.”

Today, Carrillo is putting his acting and film-making experience to work as a TV producer/director for the Institute for Health Promotion Research (IHPR) at the UT Health Science Center at San Antonio.

Carrillo has always loved movies and enjoyed acting (his mom used to say, though, he was better at acting up than acting).

After high school, he tried majoring in theatre.

But he ended up getting a more practical degree instead. Nuclear medicine seems like a 360-degree shift from acting, but having a steady hospital job as a technologist and interventional radiology operations manager allowed him participate in bilingual TV commercials, public service announcements, voiceovers, print ads, etc.

Carrillo eventually ingrained himself in the San Antonio film community and became fascinated with the production process of movie-making.

He started developing narrative films promoting health and wellness as a contractor for the video department at the UT Health Science Center. His videos focused on diabetes education, geriatric fall prevention, sex education and more.

One video used a continuous-shot format to follow a nursing student through a simulation lab. He scripted all the action choreography.

“I was able to incorporate unique learning objectives through different mediums and concepts for different video productions,” Carrillo said.

At the IHPR, he currently produces on-camera and animated videos—scripting, concept design, production and more—for Salud America! (LINK =, a national network dedicated to reducing and preventing Latino childhood obesity.

Carrillo said he likes knowing that the materials he helps create can help teach children and families to live healthier.

“I enjoy the opportunity to contribute to a genuine and purposeful cause that impacts so many human beings via a creative environment that allows me to try new methods of media production to disseminate information,” he said.

By The Numbers By The Numbers



of Latino kids have obesity (compared to 11.7% of white kids)

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