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Fun Family Cinema Returns for 8th Annual KidCinemaFest Film Festival in New York

More Than 40 Films From Over 25 Countries For All Ages

Free Entrance and All Foreign Language Films are subtitled in English

Cine Art Entertainment Productions, in collaboration with Councilman Ydanis Rodríguez, Alianza Dominicana Cultural Center, and Catholic Charities proudly presents the 8th annual edition of KidCinemaFest Film Festival, October 13th to the 19th, 2016.  

The Festival aims to enrich children’s appreciation for film making and cultural diversity through a program of over 40 films that includes documentaries, fiction films as well as animations from 25 countries in Europe, North America, Latin America, Africa and Asia.  The festival welcomes attendees of all ages to view some of the most exciting, smart, and reflective movies of this decade.  Entrance is free and all foreign language films are subtitled in English.

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KidCinemaFest opens October 13, 7:00pm at Alianza Dominicana Cultural Center the U.S premier of the Dominican feature film LOS FABULOS MA’ MEJORES directed by Carlos Manuel Plasencia and produced by Celines Toribio. This Dominican film is for all ages and tells the story of, Chelo Rosario, a kid baseball coach who’s not doing very well. He has no money, no job and his baseball team, although wonderful, is spectacularly bad at playing baseball. One day an announcement is made on the radio regarding the first ever Kid’s Baseball Tournament in the Dominican Republic and Chelo decides to ask the beautiful Joanna (Denise Quiñones) — who is the mother of one of the kids — for help to enter the tournament. The result is a fun-filled family oriented comedy where kids as well as adults will enjoy the crazy adventures of this fabulous team and the importance of fighting for your dreams regardless of how difficult they may be.

KidCinemaFest closes on October 19, 7:00pm at Alianza Dominicana Cultural Center with the French feature film Belle and Sebastian. Adapted from the popular series by Cécile Aubry, Belle and Sebastian is a breathtaking adventure set high in the snowy Alps during a dramatic time in history. Sebastian is a resourceful young boy raised by an eccentric guardian (played by Tchéky Karyo, one of France’s most popular actors) in a peaceful mountain village. Sebastian meets a much feared wild dog, known by herders as ‘The Beast.’ Playing together in the alpine meadows and water holes, the boy and the dog come to love and rely upon one another; Sebastian calls her ‘Belle’. When German Nazis arrive, looking for Jewish refugees crossing the treacherous pass to Switzerland, courageous Belle and Sebastian join the resistance.

As the film festival founder and director, Armando Guareño says, “This year’s film program strives to enrich the lives of children through the art of cinema, enabling children and families to learn from different cultures without having to leave New York City.” While Councilman Ydanis Rodriguez shares similar thoughts on the festival, “As a longtime supporter of the KidCinemaFest, I’m incredibly proud of the success the program has enjoyed. Over a few short years it has become the preeminent children’s film festival in New York City, broadening the cultural horizons of hundreds of our youth.” 

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The complete programming is organized in four sections. KID FLIX 1 section, composed of a colorful collection of short films from around the world. KID FLIX 2 section, a distinctive international short films collections that includes directors Olga and Tatiana Poliektova film My GRANDFATHER WAS A CHERRY TREE (Russia),  Ainslie Henderson newest short film STEMS (United Kingdom), Natalia Chernysheva’s film TWO FRIENDS (France and Russia), and from the directors of PHANTOM BOY and A CAT IN PARIS we also bring you ONE HELL OF A PLAN (France).

VIVA SHORT section, a collection of short film’s of the best shorts from the Brooklyn Film Festival’s Kidsfilmfest. FEATURE FILMS section, an international selection of the best contemporary films within the children cinema industry; including Jean-Loup Felicioli and Alain Gagnol’s film A CAT IN PARIS (France, Netherlands, Switzerland, Belgium), Laurent Boileau and Jung Heninl’s film APPROVED FOR ADOPTION (France, Belgium, South Korea, Switzerland), Franck Ekinci and Christian Desmares’ film APRIL AND THE EXTRAORDINARY WORLD (France), Yasuhiro Yoshimura’s film PATEMA INVERTED (Japan), Walter Tournier’s film SELKIRK, EL VERDADERO ROBINSON CRUSOE (Uruguay, Argentina, Chile), and Tomm Moree’s film THE SECRET OF KELLS (Belgium, France, Ireland).

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KidCinemaFest venues are:

  • Alianza Dominicana Cultural Center (530 West 166th Street and Amsterdam)
  • Casita Maria in the South Bronx (928 Simpson St at 163rd Street
  • CUNY in the Heights (5030 Broadway at 213th)
  • Comisionado Dominicano de Cultura en USA (541 West 145th St (2nd Floor)
  • Public schools throughout Washington Heights, Inwood, Marble Hill and the Bronx.

The event is free and open to anyone and everyone who wishes to attend!

The 8th Annual KidCinemaFest Film Festival in New York is a project of Cine-Art Entertainment Productions and is made possible with the collaboration of City Councilman Ydanis Rodriguez, The Dominican Film Festival in New York, Alianza Dominicana Cultural Center and Catholic Charities and sponsored by LatinTRENDS Magazine, Manhattan Times and in collaboration with, Brooklyn Film Festival’s Kidsfilmfest,  CUNY in the Heights and GKIDS.tv.

For a complete list of films and show times please visit www.kidcinemafest.com

The Year of the Toro

Benecio Del Toro is having a career renaissance this year. After falling off the silver screen after the not-so-well received horror film Wolfman (2010), Del Toro started to bounce back into our hearts thanks to a mid-credits scene featured in the unexpected Marvel juggernaut, Thor: The Dark World (2013). It was recently announced on Variety Magazine that Del Toro will help reboot the Predator franchise.

The Usual Suspects star doled out great performances in Escobar: Paradise Lost (2014) and Sicario (2015), the latter of which many thought he should have received an Oscar nomination. Last year he was also the voice of the snake in The Little Prince.

Del Toro will also keep things in the Disney family by starring in another franchise film for their subsidiary, Lucasfilm. He will be in Star Wars: Episode VIII, in an unspecified as yet role, alongside Lupita Nyong’o and Oscar Isaac in 2017. That same year he will be in the Terrence Malick film Weightless with former batman star Christian Bale.

The Predator is expected to hit theatres in 2018.

 

 

Lin-Manuel Miranda Under the Sea

Photo by lowelsun.com

Straight off of composing lyrics for the 3D computer-animated film “Moana,” Lin-Manuel Miranda, the poet, playwright, and actor will now be teaming up to write new music for the live-action version of the “The Little Mermaid.”

The multi-talented hitmaker of plays such as “Hamilton” and “In the Heights,” will also be a producer on his favorite Disney film (he named his son with wife, Vanessa Nadal, Sebastian).

The co-writer of the film is none other than Disney juggernaut Alan Menken, writer of some songs you might have heard of like “Under the Sea,” “Colors of the Wind” and “A Whole New World.”

This year couldn’t get any better for Manuel. After winning 11 Tony Awards, it was also announced that he will star in another Disney classic, “Mary Poppins,” with “Sicario” star Emily Blunt.

Despite being a classic animated staple for Disney, their live-action version will face stiff competition from another studio, Universal, which already cast Chloe Grace Moretz of “Kickass” fame to star in the film. Universal‘s script for the film is nearly complete and the studio is only moments away from clinching a director to helm the project.

Either way, expect to be hearing Miranda’s name even more next year.

 

 

Star Wars Casting Update

Photo courtesy of MTV.com

Photo courtesy of MTV.com

Jimmy Smits will be making a return to the Star Wars universe in “Star Wars: Rogue One,” which will hit theatres on Dec. 16, 2016.

The last time we saw Smits’ Senator Bail Prestor Organa, a founding member of the rebel alliance, was in the threequel to the prequel films, “Revenge of the Sith (2005).”

In that film, the Puerto Rican’s character adopts Princess Leia Organa and takes her home with him to create a family with his wife in Alderaan, while also protecting the future general of the rebel alliance from dark forces.

The anthology film will take place right before the adventures of “A New Hope” and will fill in the gap between the animated series “Star Wars Rebels,” which takes place 14 years after “Revenge.”

The film will also feature Diego Luna as an intelligence officer for the rebel alliance who leads a ragtag team to take on the Galactic Empire in order to steal the floor plans for the Death Star.

Despite his return to the franchise, Smits character has a grim future ahead of him in “A New Hope.”

Star Wars Casting Update

Photo by Televisa.com

Photo by Televisa.com

The name and description of Diego Luna’s Star Wars character have finally been revealed.

The stunning Mexican actor will be playing Captain Cassian Andor, according to Entertainment Weekly.

Luna’s casting in the franchise adds to the diversity of the Rogue One: A Star Wars Story cast and further increases the presence of Hispanic actors in the rebooted intergalactic franchise.

As Andor, Luna will be the straight shooter that has a bit of an edge to him. During his leadership, he will try to be the one that calms Felicity Jones’ protagonist, the reckless former thief turned Rebel soldier, Jyn Erso, and help her steal the plans for the Death Star, which is seen in Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope

In addition to being steady, Andor is described as world-weary and strategic, which isn’t surprising considering the 19 years of battle he would of have to survive to become a captain between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope.

 

Fast & Furious 8 causes Traffic Jams in Cuba!

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While the Fast & Furious franchise is continuing to grow as its next installment is currently being filmed in Cuba it may be a joy to some of the film’s fan but an upset to some Cuban residents.

Earlier this month, the 8th installment of the Fast & Furious series began filming and is said to be the film series first of the final trilogy of films that will conclude its run and send the franchise’s main characters off with a bang. And sadly, with Paul Walker passing thus the film giving his character a bittersweet sendoff from Fast & Furious 7 the film series finds a new addition to its cast in Charlize Theron.

And much like the excitement of the film series itself, the residents of Cuba are becoming excited as well by the grand film production that has appeared in the Caribbean country. Since production began and seemingly has taken over the island, the Havana neighborhood named Vedado located in Central and Old Havana is experience havoc with its daily commuter routine due to unusual traffic jams and groups of curious onlookers thanks to the film’s presence.

Fast & Furious is the first major U.S. film production to be shot in Cuba in over 50 years since the embargo was lifted, and it is not without notice. Barriers have been built keep in order to keep curious onlookers separated from the set, crew members, and as well. And thanks to these barriers local motorists are not exactly experiencing the same level of excitement as others.

This has never happened before,” said Yani, a state worker who describes how since the major streets are closed off she has to find alternate routes just to get around, adding that it has been “a nightmare.”

According to some of the Central Havana residents, the once tranquil neighborhood is no longer there due to the presence of the traffic jams to civilians and the press trying to capture the film’s activity despite being denied access.

It’s really crazy. There are many people complaining because they’re arriving late to work, sometimes they don’t announce where the filming will occur … but Cubans are adapting to it all,” said Alain, a Havana resident who, like many others, tried to find a spot in Malecon—one of the streets in Havana—in order to see the film being shot.

For a film series that is renowned for displaying some of the hottest and latest vehicles in spectacular car racing and high-tech action scenes, it comes as no surprise that Cuba was selected as a filming location.

If you were to walk down a street within a Cuban city, you can expect to find quite a few antique 1950s U.S. autos parked alongside a couple of curbs.

The 8th installment of Fast & Furious is set to hit theaters in 2017.

Benicio Del Toro set to play Kingpin of the Cuban-American Mafia in ‘The Corporation’!

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Benicio Del Toro is set to play Jose Miguel Battle Sr., the Don of a Cuban-American Mafia, in a soon to be made film.

Del Toro will star in The Corporation which is a book of the same name written by author T.J. English and highlights the Cuban-American underworld.

Paramount Pictures & The Appian Way production company—owned by Actor Leonardo DiCaprio—were the victors in acquiring the rights to the book-to-film adaptation after a bidding war between Hollywood studios & production companies broke out last week. The film has been cited as becoming the “Cuban Version” of the The Godfather & American Gangster.”

The film’s screenplay will be written by David Matthews who has penned scripts for HBO series Boardwalk Empire & Vinyl and will surely capture the book’s “epic story” of the Cuban-American crime syndicate, The Corporation.

Del Toro will portray Jose Miguel Battle Sr. who was the head of the Cuban-American mafia. Prior to becoming the Godfather of the Cuban mafia, Battle Sr. was a former police officer during President Fulgencio Batista’s presidency prior to the Cuban Revolution; in the early 60s, he also assisted the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) in training Cuban exiles, and volunteered as a soldier in the Cuban liberation effort of the Bay of Pigs Invasion in April 1961 in-which he was captured. After being released, Battle Sr. moved to Union City, New Jersey were he began The Corporation empire.

This is the first time Del Toro has portrayed an influential figure of the underworld. In Escobar: Paradise Lost, Del Toro played Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar so he is surely able to get into the mindset of what it takes to be the leader of such an organization.

There’s no word yet when the film goes into production, but so far it has Hollywood buzzing.

Oscar Isaac as Hamlet

 

Photo By Gregg Delman

Photo By Gregg Delman

To be, or to be again. Oscar Isaac will be returning to the stage in his third Shakespeare production in a decade, on June 4, 2017, in Hamlet.

Once filming finishes with Star Wars Episode 8, in which he stars as the pilot, Poe Dameron, Isaac will have time to perform in the Off-Broadway production in Brooklyn. This new production of The Bard’s conflicted Danish prince going to be at Theater for a New Audience at the Polonsky Shakespeare Center.

The production will be helm by Sam Gold, a Tony Award-winning director of both musicals and plays. This is the second time that Isaac has worked with Gold. Way back it was in the play We Live Here.

Isaac previously appeared in Two Gentlemen of Verona (2005) and Romeo and Juliet (2007) as part of Central Park’s annual summer event, Shakespeare in the Park.

Isaac star as the titular villain in  X-Men: Apocalypse on May 27, 2016, in theaters nationwide. He is also to star in the historical drama, The Promise, with Christian Bale. The release date for that film has not been released.

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Luis Guzman on March Cover of LatinTRENDS Magazine

 

 

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MARCH ISSUE…REVOLUTIONARY PEOPLE!

From New York’s Lower East Side to all four corners of Hollywood, Luis Guzman, our March cover personality has come a long way.  Born in Cayey Puerto Rico, a graduate on City College, he began his acting career in a high school production of “Bye Bye Birdie.” Bitten by the bug, he went on to appear in street theater and local productions while working as a social worker at the Henry Street Settlement House in downtown Manhattan. Also at that time, he became active in local political causes and used street theater as a means of spreading the word on issues that affected the community. He often speaks to high school students and mentions that joining the Coast Guard, becoming a teacher, or even becoming an actor are all ways for people to lift themselves out of poverty and get in a position where they can also help others.  Luis continues to be an inspiring example of how to pursue your dreams and also give back to your community. Luis has appeared in too many films and TV shows to mention in this column.  If you watch films or TV shows, you know who he is. See Guzman in his latest comedy “Keanu,” starring Key and Peele, featuring Method Man, Nia Long and Will Forte in theaters April 29. Read about this dedicated, hard working actor with a cause on Page 30.

 

 

Hollywood began to notice Eugenio Derbez after the resounding success of “Instructions Not Included,” the most popular Spanish language film in US history, which broke box office records and earned $99 million worldwide.  Eugenio thinks that the success of his recent productions is because people love to be portrayed in an empowering and successful way. He reflects, “In the past, we were always portrayed as drug dealers or thieves instead of decent and successful people regardless of whether we have an accent or speak English. In general, “I want my films to be inspirational and improve the image our people.” In March, he is set to unveil his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame amid great Hollywood luminaries. MIRACLES FROM HEAVEN opens in theaters nationwide on March 18th, with dozens of other projects continuing throughout 2016. Read full exclusive interview feature on page 24.

 

Fantine is an emerging artist born in Moscow to a Dominican mother and a Russian father. Her music is a cross-road fusion, which she calls soul music with a Latin twist. She has recently signed with music mogul Emilio Estefan. She studied Law and accounting, then discovered music as her true passion and is now pursuing it…this is what one can call from Russia with love. Flip to page 15 for more.

Karlee Perez, was born to an entrepreneur family in Tampa, Florida. Her ethnic backgrounds include Spanish, Cuban, Italian, Hawaiian, Irish, and Chinese. Karlee studied criminology and later worked at the state attorney’s office. She first gained fame as a professional wrestler with World Wrestling Entertainment as WWE’s Diva “Maxine”. During this period, Karlee’s passion for acting and entertainment grew. There was no turning back; her journey has taken her to star as a lead on the new Emmy nominated television series “Lucha Underground”, Produced by Robert Rodriguez and Mark Burnett, in Univision’s EL REY NETWORK.  She plays the dominating conniving seductress Known as “Catrina”. See interview with Perez on page 20.

“From Puerto Rico with laughs”, Alex Diaz has become an internet sensation and local celebrity in the Island of Enchantment with his off-the-wall comedy videos on YouTube. He started as part of the on-air talent for KQ- 105 radio in San Juan and when the internet started to grow, he began his journey into the digital world and is now makes a living form it, by making people laugh.  Alex is also in a new journey into TV, collaborating with WAPA TV and doing standup comedy here in the states, he has performed in Florida, Texas and New York, a testament of his growing followers, which are not only in Puerto Rico…goes to show the power and reach of being relevant and online. Go to page 14 to read about this talented young family man.

If you go back and take a second look at this column, you will find that these stories are connected by people following their dreams, and working hard at them, it is why they are having success. These are not stories of people just thinking, wishing they can. They are stories of people doing! At some point, they were inspired to make things happen and not just watch things happen, and that is REVOLUTIONARY…I love the word revolution because; “a revolution is not about breaking things. It’s about moving things forward.” What’s your revolution?

 

 

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Additionally in this month’s issue, LatinTRENDS shines a light on young, new talent: kizomba singer Alx Veliz; Premio Lo Nuestro Best Tropical Artist and Olympic fencer Natalie Vie.

“The art of persuasion” would you like to attract and motivate people to your idea or movement? Act like Cleopatra, the legendary queen of ancient Egypt. Cleopatra is one of the most famous female rulers in history. Altough her life ended tragically, she lived abundantly by using her intelligence, charm and wit, flip to page 39 for more.

Also see in-depth reporting on important topics in “The Rise of International Students in the U.S.,”

“Prescription Drug Ads Ban,” and “The Call of Islam Among Latinos.”

The March issue also includes entertainment guides like “Top 15 Latinos on Instagram,”

“Ten Unforgettable Latin American Honeymoon Destinations,” and “5 Restaurants Cooking Up Latin Cuisine Nationwide.”

This month’s issue also features “Digital Detox” and “Healthy Habits” guides, helping readers maintain a healthy body and mind. 

Download the LatinTRENDS Magazine app: 

iPhones & iPads: http://apple.co/20jTqTe  Android http://bit.ly/1nr2vvC

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Shakira Gets Animated!

By Jessica Torres

In theaters today, the movie Zootopia features Shakira as pop sensation Gazelle!

The long awaited for Disney movie brings the themes of diversity and togetherness to the forefront in an easy to follow and riveting plot.The plethora of trailers feature a soon to be hit song performed by Shakira herself called “Try Everything” with an upbeat rhythm and lyrics so catchy even her 3 year old son is singing it!

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Traditionally a gazelle is a small slender animal but Shakira worked very closely with the film’s animators to give the singing Gazelle a more realistic figure such as hers. Known for her amazing hips Shakira divulged that she pushed for her character to have bigger hips as well! She confesses that when the producers approached her with the first visuals of Gazelle she thought that “she was too skinny, she was too fit. I told them, guys you have to put some meat on her bones!”

Living in a world where a little extra meat on your bones is beautiful it’s great to see characters in films reflect society, even if it makes the character of Gazelle seem much more appetizing to the likes of lions! When asked about her resemblance to the character she plays Shakira admits that not only do they both have hips but they are also equally opinionated and outspoken.

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Shakira definitely recommends this movie to people of all ages, it’s not just for kids! Catch Zootopia at your local theater today.

Watch the official trailer here!

Colombian native Shakira is an inspiration to us all as a hard working woman balancing her career and raising 2 young children with help from her husband, “I consider myself a laborer building my career brick over brick under the sun” – Shakira