Some may not know that Havana was one of the first cities in Latin America to enjoy the novelty of cinema. The miracle came via Gabriel Veyre in January 1897. That same year Veyre himself, a representative of the Lumiere brothers, produced in Havana the first motion picture filmed in a Cuban environment, the silent film “Mock-up of a Fire”.
From that year to date, many stories have been filmed in Cuba and even more people have linked their lives to the Seventh Art. Cuban cinema has become a regional reference, and key names in Latin American filmmaking are Cuban-born.
Havana is the capital and birthplace of the New Latin American Film Foundation and Festival; San Antonio de los Baños is the home of the International Film and Television School. There is an Itinerant Caribbean Film Exhibit based in Havana that travels throughout our region during the year. Gibara, a city in Holguín province, celebrates the Budget Film Festival, and each year the most revolutionary audiovisual productions are presented at the Exhibition of Young Filmmakers.
Maybe it was that Cuban love for the image that led OnCuba to associate the beginning of spring with cinema. The same thing may have happened with the founders of the Cuban Institute of Film Arts and Industry (ICAIC) who established the Institute in the spring of 1959, on March 24th, when nature reproduces and flowers.
In this issue of OnCuba we offer you an April of images. Through people and places having much to do with the cinema, we come closer to current events on the Island.
In addition to our regular sections, this second issue of OnCuba offers a debut: Negocios (Business) is the section where our readers are informed of economic changes, experiences and opportunities that Cuba offers in this area.
We wish you a happy journey and we invite you to keep that button switched on to stay in touch with Cuba.