For Immediate Release
Vancouver Latin American Film Festival Announces 2015 Lineup
Mexico to be Guest Country at the 13th Annual Festival
Vancouver, BC (July 21, 2015) – The 13th Vancouver Latin American Film Festival (VLAFF), the largest festival of Latin American cinema in Canada, is proud to announce its 2015 lineup featuring Mexico as the guest country. This year, VLAFF has thoughtfully curated a substantial lineup of films that are representative of what Mexican cinema is today and what it has been in the past decades.
Festival goers can look forward to 67 films, from 16 countries, including 34 feature-length films, exhibited in three venues across downtown Vancouver. The festival screenings have been organized in 7 feature sections, which include the New Directors Competition, Short Film Competition, Panorama of Latin American Cinema, Canada Looks South and Indigenous Film from BC & Beyond, among others.
“This is without a doubt one of the glorious times for Mexican cinema,” said Christian Sida-Valenzuela, VLAFF Festival Director. “Film production is at its highest point since the years known as the Golden Age of Mexican cinema (1936-1959), producing around 120 films per year in different genres, gathering awards in the most prestigious film festivals around the world.”
The highly acclaimed film GÜEROS, honoured with top prizes at the Berlin and San Sebastián film festivals, as well as the prize for Best Film at the Mexican Academy Awards, will be the Opening Night Film. The Mexico-Dominican Republic co-production, SAND DOLLARS, for which Geraldine Chaplin (daughter of the legendary Charlie Chaplin) has won numerous Best Actress awards, will be the Closing Night Film.
There are five Mexican films in competition (two features and three shorts) and more than eleven films screening out of competition. Monica del Carmen, the lead star of LEAP YEAR (Año Bisiesto) will be in attendance to present a special screening of this film, for which she won the Mexican Academy Award for Best Actress in 2011. VLAFF will also be presenting two films by two of the greatest film artists of the past century, which Canadian-born cinematographer Alex Phillips and Spanish-born director Luis Buñuel made together in Mexico.
To top off the Mexico as guest country programming, VLAFF is proud to present three films as a retrospective on director Juan Antonio de la Riva. De la Riva is best known for films that represent the life and customs of the people living in the Sierra Mountains in the state of Durango in northern Mexico. In addition to an extensive film career as a director, Juan Antonio de la Riva has also served as president of the Mexican Film Academy of Motion Pictures and is an expert in the history of Mexican cinema.
The VLAFF program includes the third year of the New Directors Competition (8 films compete for this award), 14 short films are also in competition for Best Short Film. The festival will award $3,000 in cash prizes for its different sections in competition. For the second time this year, VLAFF will also present an Audience Choice Award.
The Panorama of Latin American Cinema offers a view of some of the most recent and exciting new Latin American films. Some of the films screening are EL ARDOR, an Argentinian film by Director Pablo Fendrik, starring Gael García Bernal and THE MADNESS AMONG US, a Brazilian film by Director Fernanda Fontes Vareille.
For the fifth year, the program Canada Looks South will highlight films from Latin-Canadian filmmakers. Indigenous Film from BC & Beyond will showcase films by Aboriginal filmmakers from Canada alongside Indigenous filmmakers from Mexico.
In 2015, VLAFF is happy to continue its relationship with SFU Woodward's Cultural Programs (SFUW), celebrating five years of partnership at the same time that the university celebrates its 50th birthday. For this double-anniversary, we are celebrating our collective community by recognizing the work of Indigenous filmmakers with a special edition of Indigenous Film from BC & Beyond curated in partnership with the imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival. VLAFF is proud to be part of 25 cultural groups that form a diverse network of arts programming at SFU's downtown campus.
VLAFF provides a unique opportunity for film lovers to experience the talent of Latin American filmmakers, as 98% of these films will not be commercially released in Canada. All films are subtitled in English and are open to the general public. Tickets will go on sale online on August 15 at www.vlaff.org.
VLAFF 2015 Complete Film Listings: http://vlaff.org/article/2015-vlaff-official-selection
About the Vancouver Latin American Film Festival:
VLAFF is a registered not-for-profit charitable organization and the largest annual festival of Latin American film in Canada. The festival promotes dialogue among cultures and explores the art of contemporary Latin American cinema through the eyes of its filmmakers. Since 2003, VLAFF has provided audiences with the unique opportunity to watch inspiring films and interact with guest filmmakers from across Latin America and the diaspora. For more information please visit: http://www.vlaff.org.
Zola Public Relations