El Paso, TX

July 30 – August 9, 2020 • El Paso, TX Twitter iconFacebook icon

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Plaza Classic Film Festival returns this summer


May 20

The show will go on for the El Paso Community Foundation’s Plaza Classic Film Festival, which returns July 30 – August 9, 2020.

The World’s Largest Classic Film Festival will present “pop-up” drive-in movies at several locations in the El Paso area, and will stream other movies in a managed digital environment. Social distancing measures and other precautions will be used during the drive-in movies.

“This is a time of uncertainty, but it is an opportunity to strengthen the bonds in our community in a safe way,” said Eric Pearson, President and CEO of the El Paso Community Foundation. “I know it’s not ideal, but it will definitely be a fun way to allow people a real outlet, digitally and in person.”

Plaza Classic staples, such as the popular Local Flavor local film showcase, documentaries and newer movies, will be screened digitally on the film festival’s website, plazaclassic.com.

More details will be in the coming weeks. Updates will be posted on the festival’s website, plazaclassic.com, and its Facebook and Twitter pages.

The Plaza Classic Film Festival was created by the El Paso Community Foundation in 2008, and has screened more than 1,000 movies for more than 500,000 attendees from all over the world. It has an estimated positive annual economic impact of $1.5 million on the local economy.


Plaza Classic Film Festival accepting submissions for Local Flavor showcase


April 03

The El Paso Community Foundation Plaza Classic Film Festival is accepting submissions for Local Flavor, the region’s largest showcase of locally made and connected films.

There is no cost to submit a film. Go to plazaclassic.com/localflavor to submit.

The film series is sponsored by the Texas Film Commission. It is open to short and feature-length films of various types, including fiction, documentary, animated, experimental, virtual reality and music video.

More than $1,500 in cash will be handed out in the third annual Local Flavor Awards.

Entry deadline is 11:59 p.m. Monday, June 29, 2020.

Any type of film may be submitted. No works-in-progress will be accepted.

Projects must have been completed on January 1, 2019 or after, and must be made locally, locally set or have a connection of some kind to the El Paso-Juarez-Las Cruces area (such as a director originally from El Paso). Entries selected for the Local Flavor series will be announced in July and screened during the festival.

The Local Flavor series is curated by El Paso filmmakers Zach Passero (The Weird Kidz, The Man Who Killed Hitler and Then the Bigfoot, Wicked Lake, Motel, Glimpse), who has been involved with the Plaza Classic Film Festival since it began in 2008, and Lucky McKee (Kindred Spirits, The Man Who Killed Hitler and Then the Bigfoot, The Woman), who first appeared at PCFF in 2014.

Local Flavor is a popular component of the Plaza Classic Film Festival, which is scheduled to return for its 13th year July 30 through August 9, 2020.

Call 915-533-4020 or email us at local@plazaclassic.com for more information.


2020 dates, pass sale announced


November 29

The El Paso Community Foundation’s Plaza Classic Film Festival returns for its 13th year July 30 through August 9, 2020. The 11-day movie marathon typically features around 100 films and draws 40,000 people. Titles and guest stars for PCFF 13.0 will be announced in the coming months.

In the meantime, passes for next year’s Plaza Classic are on sale for a discounted price through New Year’s Eve.

A Festival Pass entitles the owner entry to all ticketed events, invitations to special events, an express entry lane and discounts at nearby eateries.

The pass sells for $200, but will be on sale for $175 now through 11:59 p.m. Tuesday, December 31.

Passes are available on the Tickets & Passes page of this site, or by calling 915-533-4020 beginning Monday, December 2.

Pictured: 2019 special guests Sam Elliott and Katharine Ross with interview Scott McGee of Turner Classic Movies.


Free Holiday Movies at the Plaza Theatre return for 4th annual WinterFest


November 14

The Pumpkin King, a couple of weary Thanksgiving travelers and one of the world’s most beloved groups of animated toys join the big-screen fun in this year’s Texas Gas Service FREE Holiday Movies at the Plaza Theatre, part of the City of El Paso’s fourth annual WinterFest.

Texas Gas Service is sponsoring the free movies (no tickets required) in partnership with the El Paso Community Foundation, the Plaza Classic Film Festival and El Paso Live. WinterFest is presented by The Hospitals of Providence and Providence Children’s Hospitals. This year’s series — the ninth overall presented by the Plaza Classic Film Festival — features eight movies, which will be shown over five Sundays from November 24 to Dec. 29.

Remember, they’re FREE. No tickets required. Seating is first-come, first-served.

November 24
It opens with Tim Burton’s animated musical The Nightmare Before Christmas, about the Pumpkin King of Halloween Town gives Christmas a try. It will show at 3:30 p.m. November 24, the Sunday before Thanksgiving, in the Plaza Theatre.

It will be followed at 7 p.m. that day by John Hughes’ comedy Planes, Trains and Automobiles, about two very different holiday travelers (John Candy and Steve Martin) who go to great lengths to get home for Thanksgiving. Parental note: It is rated R for profane language, most of which is in one scene.

December 1
The series continues at 1 p.m. with Chevy Chase in National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, and Robert Zemeckis’ computer-animated favorite The Polar Express at 3:30 p.m.

December 8
Will Farrell stars as the adorable, human Elf at 1 p.m., followed by that Red Ryder-loving Ralphie in A Christmas Story at 3:30 p.m.

December 22
The movies continue at 3:30 p.m. with the most beloved Christmas movie of all time, Frank Capra’s It’s a Wonderful Life.

December 29
The free movie series concludes at 1 p.m. with the Disney Pixar favorite Toy Story, about the lovable toys that come to life when their owner is away.

In true Plaza Classic style, organists Ken Fedorick, Richard Garven and Laurie Koval will perform on the Plaza Theatre’s original, restored Wyler Mighty Wurlitzer Pipe Organ before each movie.

WinterFest, which includes El Paso Live’s WinterFest Ice Skating Rink in Arts Festival Plaza, runs November 23 through January 5. The rink opens for skating at noon November 23 and will remain open daily through January 5. Go to epwinterfest.com for details.

The Plaza Classic Film Festival returns July 30-August 9. Discounted Festival Passes will be on sale November 29-December 31 at plazaclassic.com/tickets.


'Rocky' returns to PCFF for second show


August 09

The Plaza Classic Film Festival has added a second FREE show of The Rocky Horror Picture Show at 9 p.m. Saturday, August 10 on Oregon Street, between San Jacinto Plaza and the Mills Building.

It was shown at its regularly scheduled time on August 3, the day of the tragic massacre at the Walmart on the city’s east side, but we have had numerous requests for it since.

This is our 11th straight year showing Rocky outside, but the first time we will show it a second time in one PCFF.

Come downtown if you are ready, let your hair down, and may the rice and toast fly at cinema’s first truly interactive — and now cathartic — camp musical.

Jaimielynn Amato, the Songbird of El Paso, will open with a set of original music at 7:30 p.m.

We apologize to those who were planning to attend our outdoor screening of Dirty Dancing, and will attempt to show it next year. Thank you for your understanding.