Now Latin America’s most important film festival, it’s been a bumpy ride over the decades for the Mar del Plata event. Established in 1954, the festival was initially named the International Cinematographic Festival and attracted glamorous guests like Errol Flynn and Gina Lollobrigida. In 1964 it moved briefly to Buenos Aires - with another change of name - but after 1968, other festivals in Rio de Janeiro took over the Latin American film scene, and it fizzled out.
After a few attempts, however, the Mar del Plata festival finally re-emerged in 1996, and since 2008 it has been held annually in November. Happily, it is now a well established industry event, with films also open to the public. It now includes a new competition specifically for Latin American filmmakers.