'Own the Room' aims to inspire entrepreneurship and hope on Disney+

NEW YORK -- "Own the Room" follows five students from different corners of the world as they take their big ideas to Macau, China for the Global Student Entrepreneur Awards.

The film was produced by National Geographic Documentary Films and the Emmy Award-winning team behind Disney+'s "Science Fair," directors Cristina Costantini and Darren Foster.

The students profiled include:
Santosh is from a small farming town in Nepal; Alondra works the register at her family's bakery in Puerto Rico; Henry is a programming wiz from Nairobi; Jason is a marketing machine from Greece; and Daniela Blanco is an immigrant escaping the crisis in Venezuela, taking on the chemical industry from her lab at NYU.

"One of the most important parts to me was that I got to represent the United States being an immigrant and that really meant the world to me," Blanco said.

Each of the business hopefuls has overcome immense obstacles in pursuing their dreams, from hurricanes to poverty to civil unrest.

"That was really our metric, whose stories represent this next generation of entrepreneurs," Foster said.

As they represent their countries as the top student entrepreneurs, the high-stakes global finals are their opportunity to win worldwide attention and the coveted $100,000 grand prize to make their life-changing business ideas a reality and transform the world.

Blanco brought her company "Sunthetics" to the competition.

"Our vision is to make the chemical industry more sustainable," Blanco said. "We started with a solar-powered route to make nylon and in order to develop that I used machine learning to develop this chemical process. So now what we do is we have expanded beyond nylon and we are using the machine learning tool to accelerate chemical innovation and sustainability throughout the entire chemical industry."

So far, she's won $400,000 from different entrepreneurial competitions to support funding her company.

Foster said when people watch this film; he hopes they see that the future is bright.

"We have gone through a pretty tough year but what's getting us out of this is innovation and science. The students that are featured in this and more specifically Daniela are using innovation to address the world's problems and make the world a better place," he said.

Don't miss "Own the Room" streaming on Disney+ starting Friday, March 12.

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The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has revealed how the 93rd Academy Awards will be presented this April. In a statement Wednesday, the Academy said the in-person award show on Sunday, April 25, 2021 will be broadcast from multiple locations.

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