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Directed by:

Rudy Valdez


97 minutes

CARLOS immerses us in rock icon Carlos Santana’s life and musical journey from a 14-year-old street musician to a 10-time Grammy winning global sensation. Filmmaker Rudy Valdez bolsters this personal narrative with pulsating, never-before-seen footage — guided by Santana himself, in his own words.


Saturday, October 28, 2023 at 7:00 PM

Sunday, October 29, 2023 at 4:00 PM


In-Theatre ONLY. Not available on-demand.

Carlos Official Trailer

This film is sponsored by:



Carlos is an expansive documentary about the Latin American jazz fusion-icon. The film centers on Carlos, the person, rather than just Santana, the performer. It “showcases the genius behind the musical sensation that has led Carlos Santana’s music to resonate with global audiences across multiple generations.” (Sony Pictures Classics) His “remarkable story is as complex, lively, and inspiring as his music, offering an intimate and exhilarating look inside the mind of an elemental force of contemporary music.”


 “Carlos is a true trailblazer who has meant so much to so many people. My hope is that this film is a celebration of a life defined by humanity…He has blown up the boundaries and expectations the world had placed on him as a Mexican immigrant and person of color, and I’m thrilled to be putting this story out into the world.” (Rudy Valdez, Director)




filmmaker-Luke Stirtz.png

Rudy Valdez

filmmaker-Luke Stirtz.png

filmmaker-Luke Stirtz.png

Rudy Valdez is a two-time Emmy Award-winning filmmaker committed to creating social, cultural, and political stories through a cinematic and meaningful lens. He got his start in film as a Camera Operator on the Peabody Award-winning, Sundance series Brick City and went on to direct a true passion project, The Sentence (HBO). Shot and directed by Valdez over the course of a decade, this feature documentary tells the very personal story of his sister's plight in the criminal justice system while tackling subjects like mandatory minimums and sentencing reform. For this work, the filmmaker won the 2019 Primetime Emmy Award for Exceptional Merit in Documentary Filmmaking, US Documentary Audience Award at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival, and was a 2018 Critics Choice Documentary Awards Best New Director nominee.

Prior to The Sentence, Valdez worked as a Cinematographer on a multitude of projects including: The Last Patrol (HBO), directed by Academy Award-nominated Director Sebastian Junger; Whoopi Goldberg presents Moms Mabley: I Got Something To Tell You (HBO) produced and directed by Whoopi Goldberg, premiering at the 2013 Tribeca Film Festival; Remembering the Artist, Robert De Niro, Sr., (HBO), premiering at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival; The Conversation Series, a New York Times OpDoc; the series Second Coming?: Will Black America Decide the 2012 Election? (BET); Prison Dogs, directed by Primetime Emmy Award-winning Director Geeta Gandbhir and Perri Peltz, premiering at the 2015 Tribeca Film Festival; Buried Above Ground, directed by Ben Selkow, premiering at the Woodstock Film Festival; as well as, The Talk (PBS), directed by Academy Award-nominated Director Sam Pollard.

Valdez's most recent project, ReOpening Night, is a feature film about The Public Theater's staging of a beloved New York City institution, Shakespeare in the Park, following the COVID-19 pandemic. It premiered on HBO Max in December. This past summer, Breakaway, a feature film following WNBA superstar, Maya Moore and her fight for criminal justice reform, premiered on ESPN in July 2021 (produced by Rockin' Robin Productions); and its complementary short, Make Him Known, premiered at the 2021 Miami Film Festival and made appearances at the Sarasota Film Festival, The Brooklyn Film Festival, Minneapolis Film Festival, and Nantucket Film Festival. His four-part docu-series, We Are: The Brooklyn Saints (produced by Imagine Documentaries), is currently streaming on Netflix. He also co-directed the premiere episode of Through Our Eyes (HBO) alongside Academy Award-winning director, Geeta Gandbhir, a four-part docu-series from Sesame Workshop that explores the lives of American families from the perspective of children; how they navigate their circumstances with their families and the world at large. He is also in production on the definitive feature documentary of Carlos Santana (produced by Imagine Documentaries) and Disney +'s CHOIR, a docu-series following the Detroit Youth Choir after their star turn on America's Got Talent (also produced by Imagine Documentaries). Valdez's repertoire now extends into the scripted arena as he recently sold a genre TV series he created that is loosely based on his family and life experiences as well as a Feature film he will direct based on a story written by Valdez that is slated to shoot in the Spring.



Rudy Valdez


Sara Bernstein, Producer

Ryan CarliLine, Producer

Haley Chang, Associate Producer

Samantha Cutler, Associate Producer

Leopoldo Gout, Producer

Ashley Kahn, Producer

Lizz Morhaim, Producer

Sam Pollard, Producer

Megan Robertson, Archival Producer

Austin Short, Archival Producer

Rebecca Teitel, Production Executive: Sony Music Entertainment

Rudy Valdez, Producer (p.g.a.)

Justin Wilkes, Producer

Daniel T. Wilson, Field Producer

Jeremy Zerechak, Post Producer

Executive Producers

Brian Grazer

Ron Howard

Meredith Kaulfers, Co-Executive Producer

Tom Mackay, Executive Producer

Richard Story, Executive Producer

Michael Vrionis, Executive Producer


Carlos Santana


Rudy Valdez


Viridiana Lieberman

Hair And Makeup

Natalie Davison

Field Production Manager

Meghan Schale

Sound Department

Richard Fleming, Additional Sound Mixer

"Alex Loew, Sound Designer | Sound Effects Editor

Pasquin Mariani, Additional Sound Mixer

Zack Thorpe, Sound Mixer

Visual Effects

Matthew Brunson-Cline, Creative Director

Logan Cuddemi, Motion Graphics

Camera and Electrical Department

Daniel Carter, Additional Cinematography

Ali Cengiz, Assistant Camera

Wolfgang Held, Additional Cinematography

Daniel T. Wilson, Additional Cinematography | Drone Operator

Editorial Department

Jonathan Akshlomo, Assistant Editor

Kevin Allen Caby, On-line Editor

Emy Fowler, Post Production Supervisor

Sierra Neal, Additional Editor

Alex T. Ostroff, Assistant Editor

Music Department

Shayna Chabrow, Music Coordinator

Meghan Currier, Music Supervisor

Gisburg Smialek, Music Editor

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