The Los Cabos International Film Festival, presented by Cinemex, announces the Tributes: Oliver Stone and Mexican cinematographer Rodrigo Prieto. The festival will also grant a Lifetime Achievement Award to Monica Bellucci

The Los Cabos International Film Festival, presented by Cinemex, announces the Tributes of its fifth edition: American filmmaker Oliver Stone and Mexican cinematographer Rodrigo Prieto. The festival will also grant a Lifetime Achievement Homage to Italian actress Monica Belluci

  • This year, the Festival will pay tribute to American filmmaker Oliver Stone and to Mexican cinematographer Rodrigo Prieto.
  • Films awarded at the most important film festivals of the world —such as Cannes, Berlin, Sundance, Toronto and Venice—, are part of our Official Selection.
  • Italian actress Monica Bellucci will be granted a Lifetime Achievement Acknowledgement by the Festival.
  • In its fifth edition, the Festival launches Los Cabos Meet MART, its first film and TV market that will introduce the best of Mexican and Latin American talent to the North American market.
  • This year, the Festival will have the presence of Ana Serradilla, Ilse Salas, Manuel García Rulfo, Jacob Tremblay, Michael Peña, Craig Robinson, among other featured national and international guests.
  • Another of the surprises prepared by the Festival for this edition is the new statuette that will be handed out to our winners, forged by designer Daniel Espinosa.
  • The total of prizes granted by the Festival on its fifth edition sums up to MXN $7,366,640. This turns it into the festival that gives out the most prizes in Latin America.

This year, the Los Cabos International Film Festival, which will take place on November 9th through 13th, celebrates its fifth anniversary. In this time, the festival has managed to fuse a film program that’s become more and more celebrated by critics as well as by the audience, with a steadily growing industry platform. As part of this continuous growth, the Festival is proud to announce the strengthening of its alliance with Cinemex, one of the leader exhibition companies in Mexico. As of this moment, Cinemex becomes the festival’s official presenter under the slogan “Los Cabos International Film Festival Presented by Cinemex”.

A celebration worthy of this first lustrum has been prepared for this fifth edition, presenting a total of 45 national and international titles that include features that have won awards in the most important film festivals of the world, such as Cannes, Berlin, Venice, Toronto, Sundance, SXSW, Locarno, Telluride and San Sebastian, among others. Out of the programmed films, 36 premiere at the festival. Out of these, 6 are world premieres, 11 are Latin American premieres and 19 are Mexican premieres.

This year, the awaited Latin American premiere of Pablo Larrain’s most recent film Jackie will be screened at the Opening Gala. The film has won the Best Screenplay Award at the Venice Film Festival, and the Platform Award at the Toronto Film Festival. It stars Natalie Portman, who embodies the mythical Jacqueline Kennedy in the aftermath of the murder of the President of the United States, John F. Kennedy’s —her husband. On the other hand, the Closing Gala will present the Mexican premiere of Captain Fantastic, a film written and directed by Matt Ross, starring Viggo Mortensen. Mortensen plays a father who’s decided to raise his children away from consumerism and from “civilized society”, who is forced to go back to the real world after an unfortunate event. The screening of Captain Fantastic will be presented in Los Cabos by one of its protagonists, actress Annalise Basso.

It’s already a tradition for the Festival to pay Tribute to leading figures of cinematographic endeavors. This time, the Festival is acknowledging three-time Academy Award winner: American filmmaker, producer and screenwriter Oliver Stone, who will present our Gala screening of Snowden, his controversial and most recent film. Starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Shailene Woodley, Melissa Leo and Zachary Quinto, this film is Stone’s take on the polemic real-life case of an NSA employee who decided to leak the extent of how controlled American citizens’ private information is by the US Government. Salvador (1986) and JFK (1991), emblematic films of Stone’s filmography will be screened as a supplement to this tribute,

The festival will also celebrate the work of Mexican cinematographer Rodrigo Prieto, who has stood out as one of the frontrunners of the worldwide film industry. He has collaborated with filmmakers like Alejandro González Iñárritu, Oliver Stone, Pedro Almodóvar and Julie Taymor. As part of this tribute, the festival will screen Biutiful (2010) by Alejandro González Iñárritu, Lust Caution (2007) by Ang Lee and The Wolf of Wall Street (2013) by Martin Scorsese.

It’s also an honor to announce the presence of the following international celebrities: Raffi Pitts, director who belongs to the New Wave of Iranian Cinema, who has been a three-time runner for the Golden Bear in Berlin; Andrea Arnold, Academy Award winner for her short film Wasp (2003) who has also been awarded in Cannes for Fish Tank (2009); Cypriote filmmaker Chad Hartigan, two-time winner at the Sundance Film Festival; Jacob Tremblay, acknowledged by his performance in Room (2015); Michael Peña, film and TV actor who’s known for his participation in Million Dollar Baby (2014); Craig Robinson, actor and comedian who plated Dunder-Mifflin in the award winning show The Office; and Dennis Quaid, actor and director who has taken part in films like Great Ball of Fire! (1989), Far from Heaven (2002) and The Day After Tomorrow (2004).

Festival’s special guest, Italian actress Monica Bellucci will receive the Lifetime Achievement acknowledgement. The actress will present the premiere of On the Milky Road, recent production of Serbian director Emir Kusturica. Bellucci’s performance has stood out in films like Francis Ford Coppola’s Bram Stoker’s Dracula, Gaspar Noe’s Irreversible (2002), Gilles Momouni’s L’Apartment (1996), Giusepe Tornatore’s Malèna (2000), and more recently in Sam Mendes’ Spectre (2015).

As part of the festival’s tradition, the most select films of international and Mexican cinema are gathered in our Official Selection, which is conformed by:

Competencia Los Cabos: 9 films produced in Mexico, the United Stated and Canada that have unique authorship that have made them stand out in the world’s most important official selections. The list is made of American Honey, by Andrea Arnold, which premiered at the Cannes Film Festival where it was granted the Jury Prize. Christine, by Antonio Campos, which is based in the real story of journalist Christine Chubbuck, who committed suicide in front of the camera during a live broadcast of her show. Donald Screen, Kris Avedisian’s first film. The director also wrote and starred in this particular story with comedic tints that competed in Locarno. The Untamed, by Amat Escalante, which premiered in Venice where it won the Silver Lion for Best Director. Operation Avalanche, by Matt Johnson, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival.

Porto, Gabe Klinger’s first fiction feature; its executive producer is Jam Jarmusch. The Other Half, by Joey Klein, and Two Lovers and a Bear by Kim Nguyen, both of which star Tatiana Maslany, Emmy winner for Best Actress this year. Soy Nero closes this selection; it’s directed by acclaimed Iranian filmmaker Raffi Pitts and produced by Mexican Nicolás Celis.

These films compete for:

Cinemex Award for Best Film in Competencia Los Cabos for MXN $200,000
Cinemex Audience Award for Best Mexican Film, for MXN $200,000
Labodigital Support for Distribution, equivalent to USD $15,000

Mexico Primero. Constituted by 6 Mexican films that show the productive relationship between the Festival, the national industry and outstanding filmmakers not to miss. We proudly present the world premieres of Carroña, by Sebastián Hiriart; Los paisajes, by Rodrigo Cervantes and William, el nuevo maestro del judo by Ricardo Silva and Omar Guzmán. These films all have their origins in our 2015 Work in Progress selection. Another film derived in that same space is Bellas de Noche, by María José Cuevas, which has been selected in Telluride and Toronto. Competing in this selection we also have the Latin American premieres of Tamara y la Catarina, by Lucía Carreras, and x500, by Juan Andrés Arango. Both films premiered in Toronto, becoming another fruitful outcome of the talent-industry synergy that the Festival has promoted from the start.

These titles compete for:

Cinemex Award for Best Film in Mexico Primero: MXN $200,000
Cinemex Audience Award for Best Mexican Film: MXN $200,000
Labodigital Support for Distribution: equivalent to USD $15,000
FIPRESCI Award for Best Mexican Film
Art Kingdom Trailer Award, granted by Art Kingdom Showbiz Agency, worth USD $12,000 in the production of a theatrical trailer

Another surprise that will be offered to our winners is the new statuette forged exclusively by the internationally renowned Mexican jeweler, Daniel Espinosa. The Los Cabos unique sunsets and the motion of its waves are integrated with the figure of a whale in the artist’s new creation. The statuette becomes an homage to the mammal that visits the Los Cabos shores every year. International celebrities such as Melanie Griffith, Salma Hayek and Sophia Loren have worn Espinosa’s designs on the red carpet.

Likewise, the Los Cabos International Film Festival, presented by Cinemex, is honored to announce the Jury that will take on the task of choosing the winners of the Festival’s fifth edition. Its members are all outstanding leaders of the international film industry.

The Jury of Competencia Los Cabos is made out of Cameron Bailey, artistic director of the Toronto International Film Festival since 2012, programmer and outstanding film critic; Charles Tesson, Artistic Delegate of the Critics Week in Cannes since 2011, as well as a film critic and historian and collaborator for Cahiers du Cinéma since 1979. Pablo Trapero, Argentinian filmmaker who’s been acknowledged in France as Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters, and winner of the Silver Lion for Best Director at the Venice Film Festival (2015) for his film El Clan; his film El bonaerense is considered as one of the most important films of his country.

The Mexico Primero Jury is integrated by Carlos Carrera, Mexican filmmaker and four-time winner of the Ariel Awards, as well as the Palm d’Or in Cannes for his outstanding short film El héroe. He also was President of the Mexican Academy of Cinematographic Arts and Science from 2010-2012; his filmography includes titles like El crimen del Padre Amaro, nominated to the Oscar in 2003 for Best Foreign Film. Ciro Guerra, Colombian filmmaker nominated to this year’s Academy Awards for El abrazo de la serpiente, film that’s won 37 awards worldwide. Gibrán Portela, award winning playwright and screenwriter, currently one of the most emblematic names in the Mexican film industry, as shown by his screenplays for La jaula de oro —which granted him the Ariel Award alongside Lucía Carreras and Diego Quemada Diez—Güeros and The Untamed.

For the second year in a row, the Festival will give the FIPRESCI Award, granted by the International Federation of Cinematographic Press. The Jury that will represent the federation is integrated by Ernesto Diezmartínez, one of the most acknowledged film critics in Mexico, who currently collaborates for Reforma. Chaiara Arroyo, film critic and Mexican correspondent for Screen International and collaborator for El País; and Gerald Peary, film critic, American academic and filmmaker, collaborator for The Arts Fuse based in Boston and director of the documentary For the Love of Movies: The Story of American Film Criticism.

We’re also glad to give out the film program for the Festival’s most awaited sections.

World Highlights: Death in Sarajevo (Bosnia and Herzegovina-France) by master Danis Tanovic. Winner of the Grand Jury Prize and FIPRESCI Prize at the Berlin International Film Festival, and the Bosnian contender for the 2017 Oscars. The Red Turtle (Japan-France-Belgium), silent fable awarded at Cannes, produced by Studio Ghibli and Wild Bunch, directed by Academy Award winner for Best Animated Short, Michael Dudok de Wit. Hunt for the Wilderpeople (New Zealand), by Taika Waititi, one of the directors of acclaimed What we do in the shadows (2014). Under the Shadow (United Kingdom), by Babak Anvari, is the British contender for the 2017 Oscars. Aquarius (Brazil-France) by Kleber Mendonça Filho, which premiered as part of the 2016 official selection of the Cannes Film Festival. It starts legendary Brazilian actress Sonia Brega. Lion (Australia – United Kingdom – USA), by Garth Davis, starring Nicole Kidman, Rooney Mara and Dev Pated, which was acclaimed at the Toronto Film festival.

American Specials: Café Society, Mexican premiere of Woody Allen’s 46th film, starring Jesse Eisenberg and Kristen Stewart. American Pastoral, the Latin American premiere of Ewan McGregor’s debut as director. Little Men, by acclaimed New York filmmaker, Ira Sachs. Morris from America, by Chad Hartigan. And Kenneth Lonnergan’s new film, Manchester by the Sea, which was enthusiastically embraced by the critics after its premiere in Sundance.

Green: This section supported by Fundación Televisa includes a series of films that question the relationship of humans with nature. This year, the section is particularly strong, since it’s conformed by the work of acknowledged filmmakers such as Terrance Malick, whose most ambitious project, which was produced over four decades, Voyage of Time, synthesizes the history of the universe in a visually striking proposal narrated by Cate Blanchett. The section also includes Safari, by controversial Austrian filmmaker Ulrich Seidl, which is an impeccable approach to the motivations of the huntsmen that practice “touristic hunting” in Africa.

Academy Award nominee for Best Documentary (Supersize me) Morgan Spurlock presents a horror documentary about rodents and how they’ve taken over the world despite our tireless efforts to extinguish them. Finally, the controversial The Islands and the Whales by Mike Day submerges the viewer in the cosmogony of the people of the Faroe Islands: their traditional consumption of whale meat and the disjunctive of being forced to abandon this tradition after finding out that it contains high levels of mercury due to sea pollution.

Music is also a part of the Festival with its B-Side section, presented by Pepsi, which will have the presence of Natalia Lafourcade who will present the world premiere of the documentary about her most recent album, Hasta la raíz, directed by Bruno Bancalari and Juan Pablo López Fonseca. Laforucade will also give a concert. As part of the acknowledgement of her career, the singer will receive an award granted by MTV. Following the line that brings music and cinema together, the festival will also present The Lure, a Polish feature directed by Agnieszka Smoczynska, which was awarded at Sundance and presented at the Berlinale and in Edimburgh. This film features two vampire mermaids that put up a singling act in a decaying nightclub in Warsow. This film also has an amazing soundtrack that includes songs by Ballady I Romanse.

This year, we’re honored to present the section Special Presentations that includes four outstanding titles: Burn your Maps, by Jordan Roberts, starring the kid Jacob Tremblay, a guest of this edition of the festival and leading actor of Room (2015); La habitación: a collaborative feature conformed of 8 stories directed by Carlos Carrera, Daniel Giménez Cacho, Carlos Bolado, Ernesto Contreras, Alfonso Pineda Ulloa, Alejandro Valle, Iván Ávila Dueñas and Natalia Beristáin. The film is a tour of Mexican history of the twentieth century told through events that take place in the same room throughout the span of 100 years. Mientras el lobo no está, by Joseph Hemsani; War on Everyone, by John Michael McDonagh, starring Michael Peña, Stephanie Sigman and Alexander Skarsgard, which tells the story of two corrupt cops who come face to face with a hotshot gangster; and The Art of More, TV show out of which we’ll screen one episode presented by its leading actor and our special guest Dennis Quaid.


Running parallel to its film program, the Los Cabos International Film Festival, presented by Cinemex, has always stood out for being a meeting platform for industry professionals. In order to strengthen said initiative, this year the Los Cabos Meet-MART is renewed and launched. This is a film and TV market that will introduce the best Mexican and Latin American talent to the North American market.

As part of the activities that will be held within the Los Cabos Meet-MART, we’ll have Los Cabos Industry Meetings, where the 26 projects that have been selected this year through our Gabriel Figueroa Film Fund (Film and TV in development and Work-in-Progress) will be able to schedule one-on-one meetings with important members of the international film industry, such as distributers, salespeople, financing companies, as well as film, TV and streaming platform buyers.

We will also host the Los Cabos Film Investor Summit presented by the American production house Winston Baker, which adds to the list of financing forums that have taken place in Cannes, Shanghai, Toronto, Zurich and New York.

Gabriel Figueroa Film Fund

26 selected film and TV projects in different development stages will compete for the Gabriel Figueroa Film Fund of MXN $450,000 in cash, and for USD $160,000 worth of post-production services granted by Labodigital. There will also be an award granted by LCI Seguros, which will insure the total filming of a movie, and is worth up to USD $10,000. There’s also a prize in the form of a loan of equipment granted by CTT EXP & RENTALS for 4 weeks of shooting, which is worth MXN $1,256,640.80.

The Jury that will evaluate the section of Film in Development is constituted by Carlo Chatrian, Artistic Director of Locarno, Diana Bustamante, Artistic Director of the Cartagena de Indias International Film Festival and Sylvian Corbell, Québécois producer and founder of Metafilms, Inc. Corbell is responsible for producing several of the films directed by Xavier Dolan and Denis Coté. A committee made out of Labodigital representatives, the festival itself and an independent delegate (which will be José Rodríguez, Director of Documentary Programs of the Tribeca Film Institute for this edition) will grant the awards in post-production services.

The Los Cabos International Film Festival is grateful for the support of: Secretaría de Cultura, IMCINE, FITURCA, Comisión de Filmaciones de la CDMX, CPTM, Grupo Aeropuertario Mexicano (GAP), Cinemex, Labodigital, Art Kingdom, Pimienta Films, CTT Exp & Rentals, Grupo Financiero Monex, Caponeto, MAC Cosmetics, Daniel Espinosa, SPR | OPMA, Pepsi | Epura, Atrápalo, Redken, Bulldog, Say the Same, Productos JA, XX Lager, LCI, , Tequila Herradura, Jack Daniels, , Señorito, BMW, Moet Chandon, , ME Cabo, The Resort at Pedregal, The Official Gala Hotel.

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