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PRODUCTION Spain / UK / Germany / France

Icíar Bollaín brings the life of Yuli to the big screen

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- The Spanish filmmaker once again opts for a screenplay by Paul Laverty for a co-production portraying the life of the legendary Cuban dancer Carlos Acosta

Icíar Bollaín brings the life of Yuli to the big screen
Director Icíar Bollaín and dancer Carlos Acosta

Shooting on Icíar Bollaín’s new film (Even the Rain [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Icíar Bollaín
film profile
]
The Olive Tree [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Icíar Bollaín
film profile
]
), Yuli, kicked off on 9 November. The film is based on the screenplay written by Bollaín’s companion, Paul Laverty, and tells the story of Cuban dancer Carlos Acosta (who plays his adult self in the film). Filming is currently taking place in Cuba (six weeks), Spain (one week) and the United Kingdom (one week).

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With a soundtrack from the award-winning Alberto Iglesias (Julieta [+see also:
film review
trailer
Q&A: Pedro Almodóvar
film profile
]
) and Álex Catalán as director of photography (Marshland [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Alberto Rodríguez
film profile
]
), the film focuses on Yuli, the nickname given to Carlos Acosta by his father, Pedro, who considers him the son of Ogun, an African god and a fighter. As a child however, Yuli avoids discipline and education, learning from the streets of an impoverished and abandoned Havana.

His father, however, has other ideas, and knowing that his son has a natural talent for dance, sends him to the National Ballet School of Cuba. Despite his repeated escapes and initial poor behaviour, the boy is inevitably drawn to the world of dance, and begins to shape his legendary career from a young age, becoming the first black dancer to be cast in some of the most prestigious ballet roles, originally written for white dancers, in companies such as the Houston Ballet or the Royal Ballet in London.

Yuli was produced by Morena Films and Potboiler Productions, in co-production with Galápagos Media, Hijo de Ogún AIE (Spain), Producciones de la 5ta Avenida and ICAIC (Cuba), Match Factory Productions (Germany) and Mandarin Production (France). The film is also counting on the participation of BBC Films, Movistar +, and on the support of Eurimages, ICAA, FFA and Berlin MedienfundThe Match Factory is responsible for international sales, while Entertainment One Films Spain - eOne Films will be distributing the film in Spain.

(Translated from Spanish)

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