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Cine Cubano Magazine, the longest running magazine in Latin America

Published: 2020.06.29 - 08:47:48  /  /  Redacci├│n Digital

Cine Cubano Magazine, the longest running magazine in Latin America

With the creation of the Cuban Institute of Art and Cinema Industry (Icaic), on March 24, 1959, through the first law in the cultural field of the rising Revolution, an old collective dream became a reality.

This institution, unprecedented in the country, born with a manifest will to break away, could not do without a means of disseminating ideas. In a time of complex circumstances, in mid-June 1960, just a year and a few months after the founding of Icaic, the opening issue of the Cine Cubano magazine appeared, with a circulation of 20,000 copies. The cover features a photograph of Rebeldes, the second story in Historias de la Revolución, Tomás Gutiérrez Alea's first feature film not yet released at that time.

"Creating from a point zero" is, according to Alfredo Guevara in the editorial text of this inaugural issue, the guiding purpose of "the first revolutionary measure taken in the field of art. The founder of Icaic defines the premises of the new Cuban cinema: quality, artistic, national, non-conformist, cheap, commercial and technically finished cinema. Immersed in this foundational melting pot, the magazine's pages welcomed the new creators who were being trained as they went along, as well as others from the Cine Club Visión and the Sociedad Cultural Nuestro Tiempo. The publication added renowned firms such as the critic René Jordán, from the magazine Bohemia; the young Fausto Canel, collaborator of Cine Guía; Héctor García Mesa, director-founder in the immediate future of the Cinemateca de Cuba; and the Tunisian-Spanish José Miguel García Ascot, pioneer in playing a clapperboard in a shooting at the Icaic.

Sixty years have passed since then, during which Cine Cubano - which despite varying its circulation, going through stages of irregular periodicity, ceased to be published in two periods (mid 1974 to 1977, and from 1994 to 1997) - represents the longest running specialized publication on cinema in Latin America.

It is noteworthy that in its first editions, Cine Cubano includes the year and number, but later it dispenses with this important data. The first triple issue (23-25) includes the law of creation of Icaic and texts about the different departments of the institution: the Cinemateca de Cuba, Cartoons, the Noticiero Icaic Latinoamericano, the awards obtained until 1964 and a set of interviews with the artistic staff. Editions 42-44 (1967) and 140 (1998) were published in Spanish and French.

Throughout its history, to which the valuable Icaic stillmen contributed their photographs, it modifies its structure by sections that ends up being redefined as of number 150 (October-November 2000). To consecrate the biggest space possible to the cinema of all times generated in Cuba was the cardinal purpose in the changes introduced, without excluding reports on filming, more interviews to filmmakers and fragments of scripts. Since issue number 134, it has a print run of two thousand copies. It is obligatory to emphasize that thanks to the effective impulse of Pablo Pacheco, named its director in 2006 and until his physical disappearance, Cine Cubano finally regularized its lost quarterly periodicity and its punctual exit.

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