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Latino Film Festival A First For Lexington

This weekend the Kentucky Theatre is launching a new kind of film festival in Lexington.

The city’s inaugural Latino Film Festival is the brainchild of Lexington native Dominic Martina, who hopes to bring a little of his experience with the San Diego Latino Film Festival back to his hometown.

"When I retired in Lexington last year I realized there are 35,000 people of Hispanic origin here," he says.

And that prompted the creation of event, which gets underway tonight. While several films will be screened, only one will be shown every night – a gritty drama based in the Highland Park neighborhood of Los Angeles called "Avenues."

Director Aaref Rodriguez cautions viewers not to judge the film by its exterior because its themes are universal.

"We just happen to be Latino filmmakers and Latino artists that want to tell something true to ourselves, but this story could easily be set in  black neighborhood, amongst a white family, in an Italian family," Rodriguez tells WUKY.

The festival runs through Saturday.

Hear a full interview with the festival organizer and the Avenues director and cast.

Josh James fell in love with college radio at Western Kentucky University's student station, New Rock 92 (now Revolution 91.7). After working as a DJ and program director, he knew he wanted to come home to Lexington and try his hand in public radio.