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Brian de Palmas Redacted, a movie prompted by the manslaughter in Iraq, and a concert by Argentinean singer-songwriter Fito Paez opened the Havana film festival.

Redacted, a film that enraged the White House, was chosen to open the 29th edition of the New Latin American Film Festival, which will be held in Cuba from December 4 to the 14.

Director Brian de Palma, though unable to travel to Cuba, had the producers present the film that was impelled by the manslaughter in the south Baghdad area of Mahmudiya in 2006. The killings of family members occurred after a child was raped by a group of US soldiers.

«Its an honor for me to present my movie Redacted in the Havana Film Festival. I feel a great love for the Cuban people and, as many of you know, I have made many movies with Latino actors. I identify with Cuban culture and I would have liked to be there with you, but it seems that the U.S. State Department could not give me a visa,» read a statement by the director.

This is one of the 500 movies "265 in competition" that will be seen during the festival. The opening of the festival had another grand opening event when Argentinean singer-songwriter Fito Paez belted out some of his most famous songs and received an overwhelming ovation from the audience at the Kart Marx Theatre.

Cuba will reflect the lights of our continent to the world «in moments when new Latin American films will present prophets, protagonists, singers, innovators and characters who always know how to reveal lifes essence - turning it into art and poetry,» said Alfredo Guevara, president of the festival in his welcoming speech to directors, filmmakers, critics, artists and cinema lovers.


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