Animated Feature, Frankenweenie, Nominated for an Oscar this month; Now Available for Purchase

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Frankenweenie, the animated feature film released in theaters October 2012 (after a World Premiere at Fantastic Fest 2012), has been nominated for an Oscar this month in the Animated Feature Film category. In case film fans missed the theatrical release a few months ago, the film became available for purchase on January 8th and I on January 8th I posted an interview here with director Tim Burton, courtesy of Walt Disney Studios when the film was released as a 4-Disc Blu-ray™ Combo Pack, Digital and On Demand. I am throughly excited to have a copy of this extremely entertaining and visually appealing product after having viewed it during the premiere.

For film fan collectors of director Burton’s creative productions, I wholeheartedly recommend the purchase of this 3D stop-motion animated story of a boy, his dog and what he does for his beloved pet during the 87 minutes of the feature.

The 4-Disc Combo Pack (Blu-ray 3D + Blu-ray + DVD + Digital Copy) has bonus materials, especially an all-new original short Captain Sparky vs The Flying Saucers and a behind-the-scenes featurette with Burton titled “Miniatures in Motion: Bringing ‘Frankenweenie’ to Life.” The film has a touring exhibit that is showcased, “‘Frankenweenie’ Touring Exhibit”; Burton’s original live-action short of the same name, and plenty more to warrent the purchase for home entertainment.

Among the voice cast  that form part of the production of Frankenweenie are the Emmy Award®-winner Catherine O’Hara, Tony Award®-winner Martin Short, Academy Award®-winner Martin Landau, Charlie Tahan, Atticus Shaffer, Robert Capron, Conchata Ferrell and Golden Globe®-winner Winona Ryder.

Landau is excellent in his role with his distinctive voice and it was great for me to be a part of the press conference last September in Austin during the World Premiere. The young actor Tahan gave life to the young boy in the film and is endearing in his role.

The 4-Disc Blu-ray Combo Pack  (Blu-ray 3D + Blu-ray + DVD + Digital Copy) also includes a music video, Pet Sematary, performed by Plain White T’s and the 2-Disc Blu-ray Combo Pack  (Blu-ray + DVD) includes all 4-Disc bonus features.

The 1-Disc DVD includes the Frankenweenie Touring Exhibit and the Pet Sematary music video performed by Plain White T’s.

Languages-  The Blu-ray 3D and Blu-ray: English 7.1 DTS-HDMA, English DVS 2.0 Dolby Digital, French 7.1 DTS-HDHR, Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital and DVD: English, French, Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital, English DVS 2.0 Dolby Digital. with Language Tracks in English SDH, French and Spanish Subtitles.

For more information about “Frankenweenie,” visit www.Disney.com/Frankenweenie

Liz Lopez

[Information courtesy of Walt Disney Studios]

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Get Set for March 2013 when The Mexican American Experience Returns

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Photo Credit: Liz Lopez L-R Johnny Hernandez and Sunny Ozuna on stage during the 2012 Mexican American Experience concert in Austin

By Liz Lopez

The Mexican American Experience 2013, presented by Crossroads Events, is a two-day music showcase that will return for the third consecutive year to Austin’s Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center in Austin on Wednesday, March 13th and Thursday, March 14th 2013.

The concerts will be outdoors in the center’s open air Zocalo area and are free and open to the public from 6-10pm each evening. The setting is great for families, especially for those who seek cultural events during Spring Break for many cities in Texas. A recurring sight at both the inaugural and last year’s event was groups of multi-generational families of all ages sharing the cultural experience together.

The featured artists for this year’s showcase will include Grammy winning artists, as well as local and regional artists that are emerging as talented musicians in varied genres.

Crossroads Events is composed of several like-minded Austin businessmen with a determination to showcase the diversity and talent of the musicians. Leonard Davila, one of the Crossroads Events partners, provided some insight last year into the Mexican American Experience production. “The reason we are doing this is Austin is known as the ‘Live Music Capital of the World’ and it is host to events with national recognition. We are able to have talent that is local and perhaps may be seen by visitors who may be in town.”

The complete line up of musicians will be available soon. For more information about the past productions, visit http://crossroadsevents.org/home and www.mexicanamericanexperience.org/event

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A Decade of Comedy in Latin American Cinema

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All screenings will be in the Black Box Theatre of the Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center, 600 River St in Austin, Texas. The film series is free and open to the public each Wednesday evening at 8pm through February 27, 2013. All films are subtitled in English. For more information, visit http://www.cinelasamericas.org
Wednesday, January 30, 8 pm
Buena Vida (Delivery) // Good Life Delivery
Argentina, 2004, Dir. Leonardo Di Cesare
Pato (Moro Anghileri) works at a gas station and accepts a room for rent from Hernan (Ignacio Toselli). Hernan lives alone in the family house since the recent departure of the last members of his family who emigrated abroad in search of better fortune.  Soon, Pato and Hernan settle into an idyllic romance until one good day Pato’s family appears, camping out in the living room.  Her father, Venancio (Oscar Nunez), who is determined to get ahead of the crisis by making churros, along with her mother, and to Hernan’s greater surprice, little Lili, Pato’s daughter!  The family claims that it will only be for a few days, but soon it becomes evident that the occupation is going to prolong.
Old Venancio sets up the bakery right in the living room, and a whole business enterprise begins running in his house.
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Wednesday, February 6, 8 pm Temporada de patos / Duck Season

Mexico, 2004, Dir. Fernando Eimbcke

Wednesday, February 13, 8 pm O Cheiro do Ralo / Drained

Brazil, 2006, Dir. Heitor Dalia

Wednesday, February 20, 8 pm 25 Watts

Uruguay, 2001, Dir. Juan Pablo Rebella and Pablo Stoll

Wednesday, February 27, 8 pm Ilusiones Opticas / Optical Illusions

Chile, 2009, Dir. Cristián Jiménez

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Emilio Estefan To Produce The 2013 Festival PEOPLE EN ESPANOL

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Photo Credit: Liz Lopez from the San Antonio 2012 Festival People en Espanol public event held at the Convention Center, prior to the performance by Elida Reyna and Michael Salgado on stage.

The 2013 Festival PEOPLE EN ESPANOL, an event celebrating Hispanic entertainment, culture and community, will be produced by the legendary, Grammy award-winning, Cuban-American musician and producer, Emilio Estefan in San Antonio, Texas, August 31-September 1, it was announced today by People en Espanol publisher, Monique Manso.

Estefan will be in San Antonio on Tuesday, January 29, along with Manso for the Festival’s annual sponsorship summit.  The Summit is a planning meeting held by organizers to preview some of the exciting programs lined up for the 2013 Festival. Estefan, who served on the advisory board for the 2012 Festival, has a new and expanded role as producer. The 19-time, Grammy award-winning producer can list music for the Super Bowl and the Olympic closing ceremonies under his production credits, as well as the opening of the Miami Marlins Stadium, The Miami Center for the Performing Arts and the American Airlines Arena. He has also produced many events both at the White House and the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, as well as the Latin Grammy’s, The Hispanic Heritage Awards and large-scale concert events for HBO and Showtime.

While some celebrity acts are expected to attend the meeting today, headlining artists for the Festival will be announced at a later date.

Festival PEOPLE EN ESPANOL is a multi-faceted program that celebrates the best in Hispanic entertainment and culture by providing consumers one-of-a kind access to the celebrities and culturally relevant content that inspires them. FESTIVAL began in 2007 (originally titled Fiesta!) as a concert and family event in New York City’s Central Park.  In 2012, FESTIVAL was recast as a two-day event format and relocated to San Antonio, Texas, for Labor Day weekend on Saturday, September 1 and Sunday, September 2. FESTIVAL People en Espanol features two nights of concerts by the biggest names in Latino music and two days of free, open to the public events.

Last year, FESTIVAL featured some of the biggest names in Latino music, including five-time Grammy award winner Luis Miguel, hip-hop sensation Daddy Yankee, Prince Royce, Tito El Bambino and more.

In addition to the performances by chart-topping musical acts taking place at the Alamodome, visitors to Festival PEOPLE EN ESPANOL can also enjoy free, open to the public day-time activities including celebrity appearances, musical performances and panel discussions at the The Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center.  

ABOUT PEOPLE EN ESPANOL

PEOPLE en Espanol was launched in 1996 as a special issue, and today has become the top-selling Hispanic magazine in the United States. Published 11 times a year, PEOPLE en Espanol’s guaranteed circulation is 540,000 and reaches nearly six million readers every month with its editorial mix of Hispanic and popular entertainment, fashion and beauty trends, and compelling human-interest stories. PEOPLE en Espanol delivers original editorial content that captures the values, contributions and impact of today’s Hispanics in the U.S. Throughout 2011, PEOPLE en Espanol celebrates its 15th anniversary with a special look at the biggest entertainment stories covered in the magazine over the last 15 years. For daily news, photos, exclusive behind-the-scenes video and celebrity scoops, visitwww.PeopleEnEspanol.com.

People’s Gallery Exhibition to Open February 22nd in Austin

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The ninth annual People’s Gallery exhibition at Austin City Hall will officially open Friday, February 22 with an opening reception from 6:00 – 9:00 p.m. The public is invited to meet the artists and view the exhibition which features over 100 artworks on loan from local artists, nonprofits, museums, & galleries.

Light refreshments will be provided by Whole Foods Market and selected short films from the Faces of Austin collection will screen in Council Chambers.

The 2013 exhibition will include special exhibits by Mondo Gallery and the Serie Project. The selected works are displayed in the public spaces of the first three floors of City Hall for one year.

The 2013 exhibition jury members were artists Jeff Williams and Werllayne Nunes, and Rachel Koper, program director at Women & Their Work.

For more information, email culturalarts@austintexas.gov

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Rancho Alegre Conjunto Festival Pre sale Tickets Available

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Photo Credit: Liz Lopez,  Roberto Pulido on stage in Austin, Texas in 2012

Calling all Conjunto fans: Thomas Hernandez from Turntable Records has announced that his store has presale tickets for this year’s Rancho Alegre Conjunto Festival in Austin.
The festival is scheduled for February 1-3 at the Moose Lodge (2103 E.M. Franklin Ave, in East Austin). The 3-day schedule features over 20 different conjuntos from all over the state including Conjunto Volcan, Conjunto Baraja de Oro, Mando y La Venganza, Los De La Rosa Boyz, Los Pinkys, Susan Torres y Conjunto Clemencia, Bernardo y Sus Compadres, and even a special appearance by Roberto Pulido with Austin’s own Los Texas Wranglers on Sunday, February 3rd. For complete lineup and details, visit ranchoalegretexas.com.

Turntable Records is located at 1903 S 1st St, Austin, TX
Store: 512-462-2568
Cell: 512-923-3511
Tuesday – Friday: 5-8 pm
Saturday: 11 am – 7 pm
Sunday/Monday: Call for an appointment

Dustin Hoffman’s Directorial Debut, Quartet, in Austin Theaters Today

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By Liz Lopez

Rating B-

The Austin Film Festival held last year in October was host to many great films, including Silver Linings Playbook, that has gone on to be nominated for awards, both at the Golden Globes and the Academy Awards. Quartet screened at the Austin Film Festival and it has received nominations and awards,  including one for Maggie Smith’s performance (Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy, Golden Globes), fellow actor, Billy Connolly, and for the film’s director, Dustin Hoffman in his debut. As for Quartet, although I do like the film with great actors and performances, I cannot say it was one of my favorites at the festival, but it will certainly have a market among those who like this genre of music and the play written by Ronald Harwood, who also wrote the screenplay for Quartet. I can’t say I didn’t have a good time viewing this film, if I have any reservation, it is because of the genre of music, but on the other hand, I think it does have a good dose of comedic moments among the drama when Jean Horton (Smith) arrives at the home for retired musicians, Beecham House.

I think it will be embraced by baby boomers who want to enjoy a bit of romantic nostalgia and for those who know that love can happen at any age.

I recommend going to see it, if not for any other reason, but to take in the directorial debut of Dustin Hoffman. See this and keep wondering what else is coming our way!!

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