Miguel Coyula Aquino is a Cuban filmmaker and writer. At age 17, he made his first short with a VHS camcorder, which led to his admittance to Escuela Internacional de Cine y Television of San Antonio de los BaÃ±os, Cuba. Since then he has won awards in his country with his short films Bailar Sobre Agujas, Buena Onda, and Clase Z "Tropical". His work has always been shot on very low budgets, his features taking several years to complete, using heavy digital manipulation in postproduction.
In 2000, he traveled to the United States on an invitation from the Providence Latino Film Festival. While visiting New York, he met Anna Strasberg of the Lee Strasberg Theatre Institute and after screening his thesis film was offered a scholarship. While attending the Strasberg Institute, Coyula made his first feature, Red Cockroaches, for less than $2000 over a two-year period. The film was described by Variety as "a triumph of technology in the hands of a visionary with know-how..." The film won over twenty awards in film festivals around the world.
In 2009, Coyula was awarded the Guggenheim Fellowship by The John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation for developing his second feature, the film Memories of Overdevelopment, a follow-up to the Cuban classic Memorias del Subdesarrollo, based on the novel by Cuban writer Edmundo Desnoes. After its world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival, the film went to gather several awards and honors. The International Film Guide described it as one of the best films Cuba has produced. After the Guggenheim Fellowship ended in 2010, Coyula began working on his third feature, Corazon Azul. In 2013 La Pereza Ediciones published his first novel Mar Rojo, Mal Azul.