The largest classic film festival in the world returns to downtown El Paso this month.

The Plaza Classic Film Festival is back for its 16th year on July 20 with guest appearances by Edward James Olmos and Helen Hunt, and the return of kid-friendly matinees in the Philanthropy Theatre.

Plaza Outdoor is returning, too, with free outdoor movies that includes Mamma Mia! and the 15th annual showing of The Rocky Horror Picture Show.

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16th Annual PCFF

Plaza Classic Facebook
Plaza Classic Facebook

The Plaza Classic Film Festival, which goes into its 16th year July 20-30, 2023, was started by the El Paso Community Foundation in 2008 as a special project to bring movies back to the historic Plaza Theatre.

This year the 11-day film festival will feature over 75 classic films, free film lectures before selected movie screenings, and the Local Flavor showcase of locally made and connected films.

Guest Appearances

Getty Images
Getty Images

PCFF 2023 will feature special appearances by legendary actor Edward James Olmos, and Academy Award-winner Helen Hunt

Olmos will appear with one of his most iconic movies, "Stand and Deliver," at 7 p.m. Friday, July 28, and before the screening of the 1982 movie "The Ballad of Gregorio Cortez" (which he produced) at 1 p.m. Saturday, July 29.

Helen Hunt, known for her co-starring role in the ‘90s television sitcom “Mad About You” and the cult classic disaster movie “Twister,” will appear with "As Good As It Gets," for which she won the Oscar, at 7 p.m. July 29 and before "Twister" at 1 p.m. July 30 in the Plaza Theatre.

Kid-Friendly Matinees and Films for the Whole Family

Victor Barajas
Victor Barajas

Making the film festival more of a family outing is emphasized this year with an extensive lineup of family-friendly movies. Among there are Peter Pan, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, and Finding Nemo.

Organizers are also bringing children’s movies back to the 200-seat Philanthropy Theatre located upstairs in the historic Plaza Theatre.

Scheduled are kid-favorites such as The Never Ending Story, The Muppet Movie, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Space Jam, The Land Before Time, and Ponyo. (If you know, you know.)

There really is something for everyone and every age group. Tickets and passes can be purchased HERE. The festival schedule can be looked over HERE.

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