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The 34th annual edition of Cine-Festival (the longest-running Latino film festival in the country) will take place at the Guadalupe from February 25 - March 3. The early deadline for entries is Friday, November 4, and films will be accepted in the following categories: Latino features, shorts, documentaries, animation, experimental films, and youth works. The fee for each early entry is $25 for non-students and $15 for students. If you can’t make it for the early deadline, the final deadline will be Friday, December 2, and the fees will be $30 for non-students and $20 for students.

In addition, this 2012 edition will mark the launching of the Screenwriter’s Spotlight Competition, devoted to feature-length narrative screenplays that explore the Latino experience. The deadline for screenwriters is also Friday, November 4, and the fee is $40 per submission. We expect this category to take off, despite the higher fee. After all there’s a $1,000 prize at the end of it. Winners in the movie category will get … hardware.

“The physical Premio Mezquite Award and the modest honoraries we give to the winning director are roughly the equivalent of $500,” said festival curator (and occasional Current contributor) Manuel Solís. “The screenwriters pay more for their submissions and it is a unique competition not seen in other Latino film festivals.”

Read our complete Q&A with Solís at, and find all submission forms at

Finally, big kudos to 17-year-old Emileigh Potter (above), whose short documentary The Dreamer (full disclosure: my wife is credited as a co-producer with Veronica Hernández) won the Most Inspiring Film award from Project VoiceScape in Washington, D.C., a partnership of Adobe Youth Voices, PBS, and POV meant “to mentor today’s best young documentary filmmakers.” The film, which focuses on DREAM Act poster child Benita Véliz, was one of 250 films to receive a POV grant. Potter’s film was one of only three films to receive awards in D.C. Potter is a student at SAY Sí and a senior at Churchill High School.


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