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Everything You Need to Know About The Las Cruces International Film Festival 2019

[minti_spacer height="25"]It’s that time of year again. The Las Cruces International Film Festival, or LCIFF, is a film festival that highlights independent filmmaking from across the globe in Las Cruces, New Mexico. The goal of this Festival is to bring the most promising documentaries, animation, narrative features, foreign language films, as well as short subjects in various genres to an awaiting audience. This film fest provides an educational opportunity not just to filmmakers and students, but the general public as well. The festival offers a panel discussion, on-site workshops, as well as seminars throughout the duration of the festival.

Every year, the Festival honors several well-known professionals in the film industry. This year is no different as George Lopez and Edward James Olmos will be recognized for their film achievements. In addition, the Las Cruces International Film Festival provides a screening of several independent student films, animated movie or shorts, and documentary films.  Accepted films will be given access to VIP parties, red carpet events, as well as networking programs that run throughout the festival. [1]

The Las Cruces International Film Festival’s creative team includes Ross Marks, executive director and Marsha San Filippo, executive producer. These two work with a team of nine to ensure the five days of the festival are filled with film, education, and conversation. In past years, the festival hosted actors from breakthrough shows like Breaking Bad as well as honoring those who have used their love for this genre to make an impact on life itself.

This year is no different.[minti_spacer height="25"][minti_image img="21297"][minti_spacer height="25"][vc_row bg_color="#dd3333" top_padding="25" bottom_padding="25"]

When and Where is the Las Cruces International Film Festival 2019

[minti_spacer height="25"]Las Cruces International Film Festival will be presented by New Mexico State University as well as Visit Las Cruces at Las Cruces, New Mexico at Allen Theatres this coming February 19 to 24, 2019 at Cineport 10 with select events occurring at the Rio Grande Theatre. The film festival happens during the city-wide art celebration, For the Love of Art Month, that occurs each February.[minti_spacer height="25"][minti_image img="21296"][minti_spacer height="25"][vc_row bg_color="#dd3333" top_padding="25" bottom_padding="25"]

Past Guests

[minti_spacer height="25"]For the past 4 years, Las Cruces International Film Festival has invited and honored several outstanding actors in their respective fields. Among them is Cybill Shepherd who received the Outstanding Achievement Entertainer Award, Ralph Bakshi for Outstanding Achievement in Animation Award Winner, Lou Diamond Phillips, Billy Boyd, Brendan Fraser, Danny Trejo, and Pam Grier. [minti_spacer height="25"][minti_image img="21298"][minti_spacer height="25"][vc_row bg_color="#dd3333" top_padding="25" bottom_padding="25"]

George Lopez to Receive Award at 2019 Las Cruces International Film Festival

[minti_spacer height="25"]This year’s Las Cruces International Film Festival will be honoring George Lopez with the “Outstanding Achievement in Entertainment Award” to be given at a VIP reception on the 21st of February. His film, “The Chicano”, will also be screened at the Allen Theatres Cineport 10.

Lopez’s career is quite multi-faceted. It encompasses television, stand up comedy, film, late-night shows, and several nominations in the Grammy’s. George Lopez recently wrapped up shooting for Walking With Herb where he will be starring alongside Kathleen Quinlan and Edward James Olmos. The film was inspired by a novel of the same name which was written by Joe S. Bullock. Lopez is also starring in River Runs Red which is the Opening Night Film together with Luke Hemsworth, Taye Diggs, RJ Mitte, and John Cusack.

Part of Lopez’s career was co-creating, writing, producing and starring in the hit sitcom George Lopez which aired for six seasons on ABC. He also appeared in the Lionsgate inspirational drama, Spare Parts, in 2015.  The film was based on a true story that revolved around four undocumented Mexican-American teenagers who teamed up to create an underwater robot that won the national robotics competition. He also lent his voice on several animated films such as Rafael in the movies Rio and Rio 2, and Grouchy Smurf in The Smurfs 1 and 2. [2][minti_spacer height="25"][minti_image img="21299"][minti_spacer height="25"][vc_row bg_color="#dd3333" top_padding="25" bottom_padding="25"]

Edward James Olmos to Receive Humanitarian Award at Las Cruces Film Fest

[minti_spacer height="25"]This year’s Las Cruces International Film Festival will honor yet another award-winning actor who has received several nominations in different award recognition ceremonies such as Tony’s, Oscar’s, and the Emmy’s. Edward James Olmo may best known for his portrayals in the hit SyFy series, “Battlestar Galactica” and as Jaime Escalante who was a teacher in “Stand and Deliver.” Olmos will be receiving the Mark Medoff Humanitarian Award after the screening of his film, “The Ballad of Gregorio Cortez” on February 19 at the Rio Grande Theatre.

Olmos has also worked as UNICEF’s Goodwill Ambassador, a spokesman for the Southwest Voter Registration Project, and as a board member for children’s hospitals in Miami and Los Angeles. He began his career as a musician, but Olmos also tried his hand in stage acting. He portrayed El Pachuco in “Zoot Suit”. The play went on to Broadway where Olmos has also earned a nomination for his role in the Tony Awards which he later reprised in the film version in 1981.

Based on the news release that announced the award, Olmos has made around 150 personal appearances to stress to kids to the importance of getting an education and gang avoidance. He also promotes the idea of children taking responsibility for their own actions. Olmos knows what he is talking about.  The actor grew up in East Los Angeles which was known for its gang problem. According to Olmos, if he can do it, so can they.[minti_spacer height="25"][minti_image img="21300"][minti_spacer height="25"][vc_row bg_color="#dd3333" top_padding="25" bottom_padding="25"]

Special Guests

[minti_spacer height="25"]As in past years, there will be special guests appearing in this year’s Las Cruces International Film Festival such as George Lopez. Lopez is this year’s recipient of the Outstanding Achievement in Entertainment Award. Also attending will be the actress and producer, Beverly D’Angelo. Actress, Zoe Perry, star of Young Sheldon will be present as will writer and producer, Don Foster.  Actress and producer, Kathleen Quinlan, will also be attending.[minti_spacer height="25"][minti_image img="21301"][minti_spacer height="25"][vc_row bg_color="#dd3333" top_padding="25" bottom_padding="25"]

Special Attractions Scheduled This Year

[minti_spacer height="25"]February 19

  • The screening of the Ballad of Gregorio Cortez at the Rio Grande Theatre. Following the screening, Edward James Olmos will be honored with the Mark Medoff Humanitarian Award. Special guests include director Robert M. Young and Kathleen Quinlan at this event.

February 20

  • The Opening Night Film, the “River Runs Red”, will be screened. This will be followed by a Q & A with the actors, producers, and directors.

February 21

  • There will be a special screening of  George Lopez’s “Spare Parts” followed by a Q & A with the actor. Throughout this day feature-length films and shorts will be shown on three screens.

February 22

  • Day 4 will include a VIP, Filmmaker, and Panelist Social.  Feature films, as well as workshops, will be hosted at Allen Theatres Cineport 10. The main event will feature Don Foster, writer as well as executive producer of the hit TV series, Two and a Half Men, Mike and Molly which will be hosted at Mesilla’s St. Clair Winery.

February 23

  • Spend the day viewing films with workshops at Cineport and Downtown Las Cruces’ Rio Grande Theatre. Another event that guests can attend is the 48 Hour Film Challenge to be screened at Allen Theatres Cineport 10. There will be workshops held at Cineport as well as Downtown Las Cruces’ Rio Grande Theatre. The 48 Hour Film Challenge will feature selected films in the Rio Grande Theatre which will then be followed by an awards ceremony for the competitors of the challenge which will also be held in the same area.

February 24

An Awards Ceremony will be conducted on February 24 at the Downtown Las Cruces’ Rio Grande Theatre. Among the awards that will be given include Best Narrative Short, Best Animated Film, Best Director, Best Screenplay, Best Cinematography, Creative Media Institute Professor Selected Films, Best Doc Short, Best Music Video, Grand Jury Winner, Audience Choice, and Best Documentary Film. [5][minti_spacer height="25"][minti_image img="21302"][minti_spacer height="25"][vc_row bg_color="#dd3333" top_padding="25" bottom_padding="25"]


[minti_spacer height="25"]With regards to lodging, Hampton Inn & Suites by Hilton is one of the sponsors of Las Cruces International Film Festival where the two worked together to provide interested parties with special Film Festival Hotel package rates such as:

  • 3 Night Stay & 2 VIP Tickets - $395 for double occupancy
  • 5 Night Stay & 2 VIP Tickets - $525
  • Room Only Festival Rate - $65 night but no ticket

Hampton Inn & Suites is strategically located in Las Cruces, New Mexico where there is easy access to I-10 and I-25, as well as New Mexico State University. There are plenty of outdoor activities nearby as well with easy access to the museum at the New Mexico State University or, for those seeking more adventure, rock climbing in the Organ Mountains.

There are several amenities offered by Hampton Inn & Suites - from fitness centers to high-speed internet, to free hot breakfast, and a pool. The lodgings and staff can accommodate all types of travelers from families, to people in the Business, and everyone in between. You can also check out Hotel Encanto which is located in downtown Las Cruces which overlooks the Mesilla Valley. Hotel Encanto is accessible off I-25 and I-10 as well as easy access to U.S Route 70. [6]

Regardless of whether you are looking to take a road trip or want to attend the Las Cruces International Film Festival, this event will result in a memorable stay in Las Cruces, New Mexico. Starting on February 19, there are several activities to keep you busy. These include a screening of original films, as well as workshops for students in film school, filmmakers, and those interested in this genre.

Las Cruces is no stranger to the film industry. It took over the White Sands International Film Festival a few years ago. The film industry has its own share of awards, and Las Cruces has set the stage to promote independent foreign films that will cater to a wide range of audience eager to explore the world of international film.

The Las Cruces International Film Festival is proudly presented as part of The 21st Annual “For the Love of Art Month.” Check out this showcase of the unique talent and creativity of our Southern New Mexico artists during this jam-packed month of visual arts, performances, studio events.

Learn more about For The Love of Art Month >>

The Historic Rio Grande Theatre, host to the “2019 Las Cruces Film Festival Award Ceremony” on February 23  brings a full month of art to the City of The Crosses. From classical music to classic films and music, you’ll find something for every taste. The Long Run, Colorado’s Tribute to the Eagles, kids’ classic film Madagascar, An Evening With Edward James Olmos, a fascinating Climate Change Seminar and classic music with Russian pianist, Ilya are all just a taste of what’s happening in February at the Rio Grande.

Learn more about the Rio Grande Theater >>


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  1. https://filmfreeway.com/LasCrucesInternationalFilmFestival
  2. https://www.lascrucescvb.org/george-lopez-to-receive-award-at-2019-las-cruces-international-film-festival/
  3. https://www.lcsun-news.com/story/entertainment/2018/12/20/edward-james-olmos-receive-humanitarian-award-las-cruces-film-fest/2359055002/
  4. http://lascrucesfilmfest.com/creative-team/department/special-guests/
  5. http://lascrucesfilmfest.com/schedule/
  6. http://lascrucesfilmfest.com/lodging-film-festival-hotel-package/

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