Los Angeles Latino International Film Festival Lineup Announced By Edward James Olmos

edward james olmos, Los Angeles Latino International Film Festival

Academy Award®nominated actor Edward James Olmos, founder of the Latino Film Institute, announced the full lineup for this year’s Los Angeles Latino International Film Festival (LALIFF), which will take place May 31 – June 4, 2023 at the iconic TCL Chinese Theatre and TCL Chinese 6 in Hollywood, CA. This year’s edition will open with the west coast premiere of Eva Longoria’s feature directorial debut Flamin’ Hot (for Searchlight Pictures on Hulu and Disney+) and close with the Los Angeles premiere of Problemista (A24), written and directed by Julio Torres and starring Julio Torres and Tilda Swinton. T

he full lineup includes feature films, short films, episodic works, animation, master classes, panels, networking sessions and musical performances. Tickets are now available to purchase through the festival’s site here.

“We kick off our 22nd edition of LALIFF convinced, now more than ever, of the importance of our mission. We are doubling our efforts to build infrastructure for the Latino community in the entertainment industry, while remaining focused on excellence”, said Edward James Olmos, Co-Founder of LALIFF. “At a time when our industry is faced with the responsibility of evaluating our commitment to fair practices, LALIFF is proud to offer a safe space for dialogue and the enjoyment of the work by the filmmakers and artists of our community.”

The program is composed of 18 feature films from the U.S., Latin America and Canada, including Moe, directed by José Luis Valenzuela, about a man dying of AIDS who requests one last trip with his friends, and director Miguel Angel Ferrer’s feature film The Shadow of the Sun, which tells the story of a deaf young man who asks his estranged older brother to join him in a musical contest. Both films will be celebrating their world premieres.
Additional highlights include films that touch on subjects of self-discovery, forgiveness and freedom, such as Chronicles of a Wandering Saint directed by Tomás Gomez Bustillo, Èṣù and The Universe directed by Thiago Zanato, and Hope, Soledad directed by Yolanda Cruz.
Some of the films in the program having their Los Angeles debut hail from the world’s most important film festivals like Berlinale, Annecy, TIFF and Sundance, including Hummingbirds, a self-portrait documentary directed by young filmmakers Estefanía “Beba” Contreras and Silvia Del Carmen Castaños; Diego Guzmán’s animated feature The Other Shape; the darkly humorous Charcoal, directed by Carolina Markowitz; the eerily poetic Daughter of Rage, directed by Laura Baumeister; So Much Tenderness, written, directed and produced by Lina Rodriguez and The Eternal Memory, directed by Academy Award® nominee Maite Alberdi.
The lineup also features powerful documentaries Patria y Vida: The Power of Music from director Beatriz Lungo, based on the Grammy Award winning song that became an anthem of freedom in Cuba and The Team, by Bernardo Ruiz, about an unlikely meeting that changed the course of forensic science and human rights forever.

Live-Action and Animated Shorts

The lineup includes 56 short films in a wide variety of genres, 33 of them by U.S. Latino directors. Highlights include the world premieres of “El Tesoro” featuring Academy Award® nominee Mexican actress Adriana Barraza, directed by David Rodríguez Estrada; “How To Lasso,” about a young girl’s dream of becoming a cowgirl, directed by Ambar Navarro; and “Detox,” directed by Dominican-American Frida Perez. Family dynamics are brought to the screen with “Pedacito de Carne” directed by Akilah “AK” Walker, “Prelude of a Story,” directed by Ashley Salman Herrera and “Translators,” directed by Rudy Valdez.

World premieres at LALIFF are “Brujas” directed by Adrian Sandoval, “La Curandera Cumbiambera” directed by Ivan Flores, and “Song of the Lake” directed by Carlos Sallas and Samuel Mendez. The program also includes animated shorts from around the world, including the U.S. premiere of “Lucky Brave’s Sunshine,” from illustrator and filmmaker Joseph Game, also known as Chogrin, and Andrés Aguilar as well as – “Ashkasha,” by Lara Maltz.


“We are proud to present a robust program of films, TV series and music, that reflect important conversations happening around the world,” said Diana Cadavid, LALIFF’s Artistic Director. “Aside from ensuring that Latino storytellers have a world-class platform to present their works, we offer a space for artists to connect with a diverse audience and important players in the industry, in an environment conducive to empowerment and artistic growth.”
Episodic Works


This year the festival will screen seven episodics. World premieres in this category are the “Mexico” episode of De La Calle, a Paramount+ Original docu-series hosted by journalist Nick Barili that takes a journey into Latine diaspora to explore the evolution of Urbano music and the cultures that ignited the musical revolution of Rap, Reggaeton, Bachata, Latin trap, Cumbia and other sounds that influence music and culture worldwide. The event will also screen “Shari” episode of the Stoned Breakups series, where Shari Bisnaught gets high and retells the harrowing breakup from her gaslighting ex-husband as sober comedians reenact it.


The Best U.S. Latino Live Action Short and Best U.S. Latina Director of a Live Action Short awards will be presented by Comcast NBCUniversal Telemundo. FotoKem will present the Best U.S. Latino Director of a Live Action Short award. The jury members for these categories are: Linda Yvette Chavez, Co-Creator, Co-Showrunner, Director, and Executive Producer of Gentified and Co-Writer of this year’s opening night film Flamin’ Hot; Writer/Director Aitch Alberto who has written on Duster for HBO Max and Little America for AppleTV+; and Kevin Shih, Manager, Creative Talent & Content, Global Talent Development & Inclusion for NBCUniversal.

The Best U.S. Episodic Short will be presented by FX and the jury members for this category are: Rossana Baumeister, producer of Daughter of Rage; Jorge Alfaro, former Director of Development & Production, Motion Picture Group at Lionsgate; and Summer-Joy “SJ” Main Muñoz, award-winning director, writer, and producer.

The Best US Animated Short Film will be presented by Latinx in Animation and the jury members for this category are: Natasha Kline, Creator and Executive Producer of Disney’s “Primo;” Octavio Rodriguez, Director at DreamWorks Animation and head of story on Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse; and Karissa Valencia, Showrunner and Executive Producer of Netflix’s Spirit Rangers.

Special Screenings

The festival will feature four special screenings: The highly anticipated Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse from Sony Pictures Animation; a sneak peak of the second season of With Love from Prime Video, created and executive produced by Gloria Calderón Kellett; Hip-Hop X Siempre, from Amazon Music, executive produced by Jessy Terrero and Primo from Freeve, a coming-of-age comedy co-created by Shea Serrano and Mike Schur. The screenings of With Love and Primo will be followed by cast Q&As, and the cast of Primo will present YCP LiveReads, a series of live readings of scripts written by public school students. The screening of Hip-Hop X Siempre will be followed by a panel with the executive producer.

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