The Austin-based Cine Las Americas International Film Festival (CLAIFF) will celebrate its 25th Anniversary edition from June 7-11 with films and events featuring more in-theater screenings and programs than ever before and filmmaker awards totaling $8K in cash prizes. CLAIFF opens with Eva Longoria’s film, Flamin’ Hot, and will close with Claudia Sainte-Luce comedy Amor y matemáticas (Love and Mathematics). There will be two days of free-to-the-public screenings at Galaxy Theatre on Saturday, 6/10, and Sunday, 6/11 (6700 Middle Fiskville Rd.). Cine Las Americas is set to take place at AFS Cinema (6259 Middle Fiskville Rd.) and Austin PBS (Clayton Lane/Wilhelmina Delco Dr.), which can be attended with the purchase of a badge or individual tickets.
Special events include an Opening Night Celebration at AFS Cinema (June 7), a Filmmaker Happy Hour at The Brewtorium, and Videos Musicales at Nepantia, USA, where the audience will get to move and groove and choose the best video of the night on Friday, June 9, a grand “Happy Birthday, Cine” celebration at PBS Austin on Saturday, June 10, and then a special Closing Night Gathering to toast 25 years of Cine Las Americas at Knomad Bar (June 11).
Cine Las Americas serves as one of the primary showcases in the United States for films and videos from Latin America (North, Central, South America, and the Caribbean) and the Iberian Peninsula. The film festival celebrates movies and videos made by or about Latinx in the U.S., or the rest of the world, with films and videos by or about indigenous groups of the Americas also featured. CLAIFF also features inclusiveness in the programming among the films representing over 15 countries throughout Ibero-America.
This year’s CLAIFF competition slate features new voices in Latin cinema. In contrast, the Showcase films feature works from established filmmakers representing over 24 nations, the most significant number of countries ever described in the film festival. For the first time in Cine Las Americas’ history, all films in the narrative competition are directed by women, and 2 of the three documentary competition films are directed by women. Another first event during this year’s edition is that women helm both the Opening and Closing night selections.
Cine Las Americas Board of Directors President John Estrada said in a press release, “In a city like Austin, which is home to multiple nationally recognized film festivals, the fact that we are one of those pillars of film festival exhibition standing side-by-side with them as we celebrate 25 years of being a major platforming the states for films from Latin America and the Iberian Peninsula is truly something to celebrate.”
Opening Night will feature director Eva Longoria’s Flamin’ Hot. The film, which returns to Austin after its successful debut earlier in the year at SXSW, is based on the inspiring true story of the Frito-Lay custodian who utilized his knowledge of his Mexican American heritage and community to thwart corporate saboteurs and turn Flamin’ Hot Cheetos into the iconic global pop culture phenomenon we all know and love. Country: United States; Running Time: 99 min
On Closing Night, director Claudia Sainte-Luce comedy Amor y matemáticas (Love and Mathematics). A movie that looks at the attempt to regain something lost during your life while reinventing yourself, the Mexican comedy follows a former teenage star-turned-suburbanite who once was a member of a beloved boy band but is now a less than satisfied middle-aged married man and father of an infant son. He’s all but laughed at by those to whom he pitches his ideas and music now until a chance meeting with a neighbor who is a superfan of his old band might spark a chance for his dried-up career to flourish again. Country: Mexico; Running Time: 85 min
Cine Las Americas’ signature programming track, “Hecho en Tejas,” supported by HEB (one of the premiere sponsors for the film festival), showcases local filmmaking talent with varied backgrounds via films and videos shot or produced in Texas. It also returns with a series of inspired shorts. The presentation will occur at the Austin PBS studios with a reception and red-carpet entrances on Saturday, June 10.
Cine Las Americas is supported by the National Endowment for the Arts, the Texas Commission on the Arts, and the Cultural Arts Division of the City of Austin Economic Department.
Badges are available for $125). For more information about Cine Las Americas and the full schedule of the films to be offered June 7-11th, visit https://cinelasamericas.org/.