Rene Rosado (The Conners) stars opposite Lisa Roumain (Avatar), Scotty Tovar (Empire) and Jessica Meza (East Los High) in the new Geo Santini’s mockumentary After The Reign, based on the abrupt rise and fall of social media prankster-turned rapper Benito Cruz a.k.a Lil Tito.
Santini, who writes and directs, enlists Grammy award-winning producer Cory Rooney for a guest appearance. In 2020, the new film was the most-watched film at New York Latino Film Festival. The film is presented by Gravitas Ventures and Red Arrow Studios through MPM Productions.
Produced by Luis C. Arellano, After The Reign follows Benito Cruz (Lil Tito) establishes an irreverent social media persona by creating and executing edgy pranks that flirt with legality. But when one of his pranks lands him behind bars, Benito’s social media following isn’t just sustained, it grows. His new inheritance provokes a transformation from clickbait prankster to hardcore rapper known as Lil Tito. Bolstered by his trolling antics, Lil Tito’s music lands on the top charts and his videos frequent the trending sections of video platforms, establishing a base of infatuated fans who ask, “What will Lil Tito do next?” Fame and influence beg for a level of responsibility that Lil Tito rejects, making the internet puppeteer a victim of the exploitative music industry. Ironically, Lil Tito is soon destroyed by the beast that created him and his addiction to virtual validation drives him to do the unthinkable.
“Social media, and the possibility for quick fame and fortune, is a cultural force and Geo’s film manages to highlight the darker side of this fame and notoriety in this clever satire. Utilizing real influencers, and drawing from the headlines, he has crafted a narrative that uses humor to highlight the pitfalls of online infamy,” said Megan Huggins, Acquisitions Coordinator for Gravitas Ventures.
“I’m a Hip Hop kid. I grew up in the music business and I loved film. I saw where Hip Hop was going and I wanted to do a character study on new age rappers and how fan bases have changed. We used to be fans of artists because of their music and it’s becoming more about an artist’s personality via social media and trolling culture. You may think that some of the film’s antics are too ridiculous to be realistic, but if you go on the Internet, you’ll find material that’s even more ridiculous. I wanted to examine what happens to an artist’s psyche after years of trolling and clout-chasing. Who is left behind when the likes stop coming in?” said Santini.
After The Reign was most recently seen and accepted into, the largest film festival in Puerto Rico. As of March 2 2021, After The Reign is available for POVD, including Amazon, iTunes, Comcast, Vudu, and Redbox.
Watch the trailer for Geo Santini’s After The Reign now.