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Latino San Francisco - Bay area fest awards

The 7th annual Latino Film Festival took place from November 6-16 at various locations throughout the Bay Area and included a record 68 films from 12 countries.

The second night of the Festival, at the historical Castro Theater, Hollywood’s most heralded and influential Latino producer, Moctesuma Esparza, was honored and given the first annual “Mocte de Oro” prize. The “Mocte” will be an annual LFF award to recognize the most important Latino filmmakers
contributing to the cinematic culture of the United States.

For the first time in San Francisco, silent film from Brazil was featured
when the silents “Frgmentos da Vida” and “Aitare da Praia” were screened at the Castro, with original music written for this occasion by Mauro Correa of the Latin American Chamber Music Society.
Directors, actors and producers came from Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Mexico,
Spain, Uruguay and the U.S. to speak about their films and mix with LFF film
aficionados. Social events included a tribute dinner to Moctesuma Esparza,
“Málaga in San Francisco” hosted by the Consulate of Spain, “Noche de Buenos
Aires,” “Samba Brazil, Silent Brazil” and Directors Night.

Three of the top nine prizes at the 7th International Latino Film Festival
were awarded to film makers from Spain. This caps off one of the most
successful Festivals to date, which this year for the first time had a Spanish theme starting with its Opening Night tribute to the Malaga Film Festival. The Feature Documentary (International) award went to Miguel Angel Nieto and his portrait of a young rabbi’s search to find out why, in 1492,Spain ended its multi-religious and multicultural reality. The Lesbian and Gay Feature award was won by Paco Díaz Aguilar for Go Away, and the Best Student film prize was presented to Maru Solores for Turtle Island.

Chilean Sebastián Alarcón won the Audience Award for Best Feature for The
Photographer, a very popular film about a photojournalist obsessed with creating a film that would redefine cinematic arts in Chile.

Other films that were recognized include the Best Feature Documentary
(North America) for Queen of the Gypsies (USA), Jocelyn Ajami’s look at
the life of Carmen Amaya, the legendary, passionate, and fiery flamenco

In the Human Rights category, the winning film was Argentina’s Raymundo,
which profiled Raymundo Gleyzer, a revolutionary filmmaker and fearless crusader for human rights and democracy in his native Argentina who was disappeared by the military regime in 1976.

The winner in the Women filmmaker’s category was a co-production
between Mexico and Sweden entitled Street Love about a former prostitute’s
campaign against exploitation.

The short film awards went to Mexico’s Emilio’s Box by Ury Espinoza
(Short Narrative Award) and Canada’s El Ring by Pascal Maeder (Short

The Latino Film Festival is looking forward to its year round screenings at
the Yerba Buena Center for the Performing Arts in San Francisco.

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