Álmodovar, Bayona make “ambitious, high-quality European films from Spain”
by Sergio Ríos Pérez
This week saw the announcement of two highly ambitious Spanish productions which will undoubtedly be among the most important films of next season, and not just in Spain.
The first of these is Pedro Álmodovar’s eighteenth feature, whose working title is La Piel Que Habito (“The Skin I Live In”), on which he will reunite with Antonio Banderas after 21 years. The other is J. A. Bayona’s second feature, The Impossible, whose cast will be headed by Scottish actor Ewan MacGregor and British-Australian actress Naomi Watts. Both productions will start shooting this summer.
Álmodovar has described his new screenplay as “a horror story without screams or frights”. No further details have been revealed about the cast besides the fact it includes Banderas, or about the feature’s production framework.
Álmodovar’s previous work, Broken Embraces [+see also:
film profile], was, like all his films, produced by his company, El Deseo, in co-production with US-based Universal. There is every indication that La Piel Que Habito will follow the La Mancha-born director’s usual launch strategy, with a Spanish release in early spring (in this case in 2011), followed by a screening at Cannes.
Meanwhile, Bayona will start shooting in August on The Impossible, a drama based on real-life events, set against the backdrop of the tsunami that destroyed the Thai coast in 2004. Filming will kick off in Alicante before relocating to Thailand in October.
Bayona describes the film as “an attempt to make ambitious, high-quality European films from Spain, that are competitive on an international market". The film is indeed entirely Spanish, produced by Álvaro Augustin for Telecinco Cinema and Enrique López Lavigne and Belen Atienza for Apaches Entertainment.
Bayona will reunite with most of the technical team from The Orphanage [+see also:
film profile], including screenwriter Sergio Sánchez, production manager Sandra Hermida, DoP Oscar Faura, editor Elena Ruiz and composer Fernando Velázquez.
(Translated from Spanish)