Travel & Places Latin America

All About Lima Film Festival

The Festival de Cine de Lima, or Lima Film Festival, is the premier film festival in Peru and one of the largest in South America.

The first ever event -- then known as the Festival Elcine -- was held in 1997 at the Cultural Center of the Pontifical Catholic University of Peru (PUCP). The PUCP has been organizing the event ever since, albeit with some name changes, including the lengthy Festival de Lima, Encuentro Latinoamericano de Cine and the current -- and much shorter -- Festival de Cine de Lima.

The festival understandably focuses on Latin American cinema. Over the years, the event has helped to highlight Peruvian directors such as Claudia Llosa and Josué Méndez, as well as bringing Latin American cinema in general to the attention of the Peruvian public.

Awards play a major part in the proceedings, with two broad categories -- fiction and documentary -- divided into further subcategories that fans of The Oscars and Golden Globes will be familiar with.

The fiction category, for example, awards US$5,000 to the winner of Best Picture, while others -- including Best Actor, Best Actress and Best Director -- take home the Trofeo Spóndylus, or Spondylus Trophy, the spondylus being a mollusk that often appeared in pre-Columbian art, particularly that of the Moche civilization.

Other notable awards include the International Critics Award (trophy and $5,000), Best Documentary (trophy and $2,500), and the Audience Award (trophy and $5,000) as chosen by the general cinema-going public.

The Festival de Cine de Lima typically begins during the first half of August and lasts for about eight days.

Events take place in the Cultural Center of the PUCP and at selected cinemas in Lima (normally in the Cine Planet chain of cinemas).

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