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Georgia's first Latina-owned production studio opens

Maria Guerra-Stoll opened the door to Playa Azul Media for the first time.

ROME, Ga. — Scriptwriting, filmmaking and directing -- Georgia's newest production studio plans to do it all with Hispanic culture at the forefront.

Playa Azul Media officially opened its doors Thursday as Georgia's first Latina-owned production studio. Maria Guerra-Stoll is the matriarch of the history-making business in the Peach State, weaving palm trees and a woman into the studio's logo as a nod to its female foundation.

She said she was inspired by another iconic production venture.

"The idea came after I witnessed Tyler Perry," she said. 

Guerra-Stoll used to work as an architect at Tyler Perry Studios.

She crafted the idea into reality, conceptualizing PAM after she saw how Perry changed the entertainment industry for people of color. Guerra-Stoll now hopes that her 9,000-square-foot studio could do the same for Hispanic and Latino talent.

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"We want to develop all these local talents together with the schools, and we want to provide jobs for the industry there. You know, Rome is really my proof of concept,” she said.

In a previous interview with 11Alive, Guerra-Stoll said she wants to help women and other minorities succeed in film and television to help keep jobs in the state. 

Though her heart is set on getting her studios in Rome running, Guerra-Stoll also hopes to create other satellite studios around Georgia.

For now, she's working on getting projects off the ground and is already working with directors for projects such as "Visiting Olivia." PAM is also working with Nappy Roots, a Grammy-Nominated hip-hop group on their reality series "40 Akers and a Brew."

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