The 14th Cine Las Americas International Film Festival took place on April 21 to 28, 2011 in Austin, Texas. With 2,700 audience members in attendance, the festival screened a total of 66 feature films and 64 short films, representing 26 countries including Argentina, Aruba, Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Curaçao, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El, Salvador, France, Germany, Guatemala, Italy, Mexico, Netherlands, Peru, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Spain, Uruguay, USA, and Venezuela.

The festival launched with a screening of the multi – awarded Guatemalan film MARIMBAS DEL INFIERNO (MARIMBAS FROM HELL, Julio Hernández Cordón, 2010), which captivated the 220 guests in attendance, who later enjoyed an opening night party at Estilo Boutique in downtown Austin, co-sponsored by Stella Artois, La Sombra Restaurant and Primo Vodka.

The festival also hosted local, national and international guests, who participated in the event presenting films, teaching workshops, or serving as members of the jury for the competitive sections of the program. The distinguished members of the jury included Venezuelan director Fina Torres, who presented her feature HABANA EVA (Cuba/Venezuela, 2009); Cuban-American director León Ichaso, who presented his films EL CANTANTE (USA, 2006), and PARAISO (USA, 2009); Sergio Alcocer, Creative Director and President of Latinworks in Austin; Carlos Gutierrez, Co-Founder and Executive Director of Cinema Tropical in New York City; Cristina Prado, Director of Cultural Film Affairs at the Mexican Film Institute (IMCINE); Jason Borge, PhD, professor of Latin American Cinema, Literature and Popular Culture at UT Austin; and Susan Dirks, Administrative Coordinator for the Texas Archive for the Moving Image. In addition, over fifty international, national, and local industry guests registered to attend the festival.

The festival programming committee reviewed over 500 films in order to select works for ten different program sections: New Releases, Special Screenings, Narrative Feature Competition, Documentary Feature Competition, Panorama Feature Films, Hecho en Tejas Competition, Narrative Shorts in Competition, Documentary Shorts in Competition, Panorama Short Films, and the Emergencia Youth Film Competition.

The main festival venue was the Alamo Drafthouse South Lamar, a quintessential Austin venue that reflects the idiosyncratic character of Austin’s film scene, and offers a superb experience for moviegoers. No less important was the festival prescience at the Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center, where free screenings and industry panels were offered. A few screenings were also hosted at St. Edwards University, and at the Blu Starlite Mini-Urban Drive-In in East Austin. The event featured a total of 77 screenings, of which 35 were offered at no cost to the public. Almost half of the festival was free and open to the public!

As part of Cine Las Americas’ mission to support diverse voices and perspectives in cinema, the festival presented a series of Master Classes during which filmmakers based in the U.S. and Mexico shared their knowledge and expertise with attendees. Industry professionals in screenwriting, directing, producing and marketing included Carmen Marron, (Writer/Director/Producer, GO FOR IT!), Andrés Martínez Ríos (Founder and Director, Aatomo Rentas/Chemistry Cine), Sergio Carvajal (Facundo Productions, EL GALLO miniseries), and Trina Calderon (Character Development and Screenwriter, DOWN FOR LIFE). The speakers discussed their work, reflected on how filmmaking and distribution have been adapting nationally and internationally to reach audiences, and shared insight into the future of independent and collaborative cinema arts.

The film screenings, Q&A sessions, and Master Classes were complemented with special events and receptions, where members of the audience and Festival Sponsors were able to share insight and show the unique character of Austin’s hospitality. Some of these events included a VIP Reception in honor of the world premiere of HABLA TEXAS (Alberto Ferraras, 2011), sponsored by HBO Latino and Stella Artois, and featuring the presence of director Alberto Ferraras, Producer Trina Bardusco, Executive Producer Christie Hines, and some of the personalities who appeared in the film, including Teresa Lozano Long, and Michelle Valles; a Filmmakers Appreciation Night at Takoba Restaurant, attended by over 90 guests and sponsored by Takoba, Stella Artois and Tequila 1519; a reception honoring Texas filmmakers, sponsored by Gibson Bar and Luke’s Inside Out; and a Closing Night After Party at Club de Ville, featuring DJ Manolo Black from Peligrosa.

The festival closed with a screening of Chile’s LA VIDA DE LOS PECES (THE LIFE OF FISH, Matías Bize, 2010), winner of the Goya Award for best Iberoamerican Film. The winners of the different competitive sections of the festival were announced at the closing night screening, yielding the results of a full year of collaboration between local, national and international sponsors, government agencies, supporting individuals, the great Austin community, filmmakers and distributors from around the world, and a dedicated festival staff that included over 65 volunteers.


2011 Festival Awards


2011 Festival Sponsors



Photo galleries:

2011 festival in figures:

  • 2,700 audience members
  • 26 countries represented
  • 57 registered industry members in attendance
  • 1,000,000 average hits on during the month of April
  • 130 films screened
  • 77 total screenings
  • 35 free screenings

2011 Festival Demographics:

  • 60% female to 40% male ratio
  • 43% Young professionals (Ages 23 to 40)
  • 25% Undergraduate and graduate students
  • 22% Middle-age professionals (Ages 40 to 65)
  • 8% Retirees
  • 2% High school students