In the mood for a road trip? The Las Cruces International Film Festival returns to southern New Mexico March 2 through 6. The event is presented by the New Mexico State University College of Arts & Science. It all gets underway this year on Wednesday, March 2, with the opening night film, The Night is Young, at the Allen Theatres Cineport 10 (700 S. Telshor). The film, which just had its world premiere at the Austin Film Festival, is a comedy about four unhappy, twentysomething Los Angelenos who cross paths with one another at a local watering hole. The screening starts at 7:30pm and will be followed at 9pm by a VIP red carpet event at La Posta de Mesilla restaurant (2410 Calle de San Albino) featuring the film’s director-writer-star David Hill and producer Brian Ferrantino. The very next night, March 3, special guest Danny Trejo will be on hand for a screening of his 2010 Robert Rodriguez-directed action flick Machete. The film will start at 7 and 7:30pm with the cult actor participating in a Q&A after each screening. Among the homegrown New Mexico films being shown this year are Jason DeBoer’s mystery/thriller Dead River and Michael J. Cramer’s horror/sci-fi thriller TRUTH. Film screenings, workshops, Q&A sessions and award presentations continue throughout the weekend at various Las Cruces locations. Costs range from $75 for a full-festival, all-access pass to $20 for a single-day pass. For a complete list of events, go to lciffest.com.
Danny Trejo in Machete
Elizabeth Gabel Casting is working on a new TV pilot set to shoot here in New Mexico called “Midnight Texas.” The show is based on the supernatual book series by Charlaine Harris, who provided the literary inspiration for HBO’s hit series “True Blood.” Like “True Blood” this one’s about a small town full of supernatual weirdness. It’s being produced by NBC and is scheduled to film in the Albuquerque area starting March 14. If you’re a local actor interested in maybe landing a role in the pilot (and potential series), you need have a photo and contact information listed on a profile at egcasting.com.
On Thursday, Feb. 25, the Bank of America Theatre inside the National Hispanic Cultural Center (1701 Fourth SW) will screen the short documentary “In an Ancient Village.” While studying as an anthropology student in California, Singer sewing machine heir John Bourne filmed this narrative of daily life in Tepetlaoxtoc, a rural village in the Central Mexico plateau region. Shot, edited and completed in 1956, the film was never officially distributed. The original masters, presumed lost or discarded, were discovered in 2013, however, and this important anthropological document is just now seeing the light of day. In the years since it was made, Bourne has distinguished himself as a noted author and collector. This will be a free event, but seating is limited. Audience members are required to pick up a ticket at the Bank of America Theatre box office one hour prior to the screening, which starts at 7pm.