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FROM THE DIARY OF
JUAN SANCHEZ

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THE STORY
Before the North American cowboy existed, when the West was wild, the Mexican vaquero rode the range. When African-American men, who, when young, escaped from slavery, and moved farther westward across the plains to freedom, they were mentored by Mexican horsemen called, vaqueros.

The vaqueros were the first to open up the old west and work rancheros with vast herds of cattle. These brave vaqueros and Black cowboys who lived in constant struggle for self-preservation; whose only pleasurable excitement was facing danger and thrilling adventures were often described as daring, and courageous.

In the old west there were range wars that raged between cattlemen and sheep herders. There were also confilcts between ranchers and homesteaders.

CUTTING HORSE, is a modern day drama about a legendary horse trainer named, Tyler (Albert Harris), and the ambitious dreams of horsemen. Cutting Horse is the story of the struggle between a powerful chemical company owner named, Neil Stone (Rufus Norris) who longs for the land, horses, and memories of an old vaquero named, Sanchez (Cesar E. Flores).

At the heart of the film is the bitter/sweet remembrances of unrequited love, and the dark secret that Sanchez and Stone have shared for over thirty years.

 

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THE CUTTING HORSE
While writing the screenplay, The writers (David Heintz & Larry Clark) became fascinated with the amazing cutting horse. Cutting is a sport that originated from the ranches of the old west. The cutting horse was born of necessity on the cattle drives and working ranches in the 1800's where, individual cows had to be isolated or "cut" from a large herd for breeding and doctoring.

Cutting horses are working horses that cut cattle. The cutting horse has proved to be an invaluable asset to the rancher who depends on the horse's quick ability to separate a single cow from the herd. Cows have a natural herd instinct. That is, the cow will always run back to the herd for protection. It is the job of the cutting horse to block the cow's path and keep it from returning to the herd.

Cutting soon evolved into competition. In it's simplest form a cutting horse is guided into the herd by a rider, who selects one cow to separate from the others. Once the rider selects a cow and drops the reigns the horse has to cut the cow by himself without the help of the rider. The rider's job is to stay out of the way of the horse. You cannot make a horse cut cattle. The horse has to want to do it.

The rider cannot cue, rein, or spur the horse in front of the cinch. If the horse is cued by the rider, or gets away, major points are deducted. Cutting is the riches indoor equine sport in America with purses that sometimes reach over a million dollars.