Cine Magnífico! the Albuquerque Latinx Film Festival has given visibility over the years to films and artists from all Spanish-speaking countries.
This year – the ninth edition – is no different.
There are 23 films and shorts that are New Mexico premieres and in some cases are U.S. premieres, which will screen as part of the festival which takes place in Albuquerque on Friday, Oct. 22, through Sunday, Oct. 24.
According to Silvia Rodríguez Grijalba, Instituto Cervantes de Albuquerque executive director, all the films are directed by Latino filmmakers, because the mission of the Cervantes Institute and its Latino Film Festival is to raise awareness of the culture.
Curating the film festival did take some time.
“It has been particularly complicated, because we were not sure if we would be able to do it in person, on the one hand, and, on the other hand, if European guests we had thought of inviting would be able to come, Rodríguez Grijalba says. “In the end, we have made a great selection of films, and the opening will be with the presence of the director of ‘Amores Modernos,’ Matías Meyer. The closing film, ‘Karen,’ cannot count on the physical presence of its director and star, Christina Rosenvinge, but we will have a Zoom meeting with them.”
Rodríguez Grijalba says this year’s festival wants to focus, in addition to the artistic, on everything related to the film industry, as Albuquerque and New Mexico are becoming major players in the industry.
“To this end, we will be holding several roundtables with experts and professionals from the film world, as well as meetings with local and international filmmakers and actors,” she says. “Our festival is more than a festival; it is a showcase.”
Rodríguez Grijalba and her staff worked to ensure that many of the films were having a New Mexico premiere or a United States premiere.
She says New Mexico filmmakers will be represented with films from Alejandro Montoya Marín, who will present his feature film “Millennium Bugs.”
Albuquerque Film Office Liaison Cyndy McCrossen will lead a Zoom meeting to explain why Albuquerque is the new Hollywood and how it is aiming to attract Latin and European filming to the city.
Spanish and Portuguese Department at the University of New Mexico, Santiago Vaquera-Vásquez, will lead the talk “Albuquerque: El Dorado of the Film Industry,” accompanied by directors Steven Burhoe, De’Angelo Bethea and Colin A. Borden.
“We have invited guests like Elvi Cano who comes from Los Angeles to know our city, and she is a great ambassador when it comes to get filming for Latin production companies,” she says.
Rodríguez Grijalba is proud of the diverse programming of the festival.
“The selection is done very carefully,” she says. “Each one has something special or something that might interest a particular audience. One of my efforts is to include a lot of films made by women and also discussions with them. The roundtables are 90% female, which I think is interesting.”
To view or download a full schedule, visit cinemagnifico.com.