March 3, 2006

13th Annual San Diego Latino Film Festival

The Media Arts Center San Diego Latino Film Festival (SDLFF) is a favorite annual event for the region, taking place March 9 – 19, 2006 at UltraStar Mission Valley Cinemas at Hazard Center. The film festival is now in its 13th year and is the longest running Latino festival in Southern California.

“We are very enthusiastic about our line-up of films, we think our audience is going to be thrilled with the quality and diversity of the movies we’re presenting this year” stated festival founder and director Ethan van Thillo. “In addition to the many amazing films we’ll be screening we’re pleased to be expanding our Arte Latino art exhibits and Sonido Latino concerts offerings. We’re also excited to be reaching a new audience this year with the introduction of Cine Gay to our schedule and believe that the Border Visions spotlight will really resonate with local audiences.”

Audiences will be treated to an incredible line-up of over 100 films from around the world. 

The reoccurring theme of immigration in several films screening in the festival, a subject of great interest in the San Diego-Tijuana region, brings them together in the Border Visions spotlight.  Included in the spotlight are the highly anticipated feature film from Mexico, Al Otro Lado and the American documentary Crossing Arizona, which recently received an enthusiastic reception at the 2006 Sundance Film Festival.

Tributes will be bestowed on filmmaker Bruno Barreto with the screening of his highly anticipated film O Casamento de Romeu e Julieta as well as actress Maria Conchita Alonso with the screening of her 2005 film, English as a Second Language. The 2006 “Cine de Oro” tribute will recognize the immortal, prolific, and much-loved comedic genius of Germán Valdés with the San Diego premiere of the acclaimed documentary, Ni muy, tan, tan... simplemente Tin Tan.

Guest director, internationally renowned film actor, writer, director and producer, Alfonso Arau, will host screenings of films he personally curated for the festival including his own critically acclaimed film Like Water for Chocolate.  Other films in the Guest Director spotlight include the 1969 film The Wild Bunch, Fellini’s quasi-autobiographical 1974 film Amacord and Kurosawa’s  suspenseful film from 1950, Rashomon.

SDLFF started out as a student film festival and continues to assist in the development of independent filmmakers through workshops being presented Saturday and Sunday mornings of the festival. Showcasing the development of student filmmakers, Youth Visions, a collection of short films written and produced by local teen producers through the Media Arts Center San Diego’s Teen Producers Project, will also enjoy it’s premiere at the festival through an evening screening open to the public and a private morning screening for area students.

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