×

Antonio Banderas Starring In Chilean Miners’ Tale ‘The 33’

Sheen, Santoro also on board miner's tale

Antonio Banderas will star in “The 33,”  based on the true story of the 33 Chilean miners who were rescued after being trapped for 69 days in 2010.

Producer Mike Medavoy made the announcement Sunday at Cannes, where Good Universe is handling international sales. Production is scheduled to begin in the fall in Chile with Ed McGurn also producing.

Martin Sheen and Rodrigo Santoro are on board as part of the ensemble. Patricia Riggen (“La Misma Luna”) was attached to direct last fall.

The screenplay has been written by Mikko Alanne and Jose Rivera. Story dramatizes the events surrounding the mine’s collapse and the international effort to rescue them, which culminated in the emotional retrieval of all 33 miners  trapped half a mile beneath the surface. The rescue was watched by more 1 billion viewers worldwide.

Banderas will play the role of Mario Sepulveda, the charismatic miner known as “Super Mario.”

Medavoy secured the miners’ exclusive life rights last year and developed the project in collaboration of the miners, the rescuers and their families. He had lived for a decade in Chile.

Medavoy previously worked with Sheen on “Apocalypse Now” while he was at United Artists, and with  Santoro in “What to Expect When You’re Expecting.” Santoro will be playing Florencio, the first miner to surface in the rescue.

Carlos Eugenio Lavin and Leopoldo Enriquez are exec producing.

Medavoy’s recent producing credits include Darren Aronofsky’s “Black Swan” and Martin Scorsese’s “Shutter Island.”

In parallel to the film, journalist and author Hector Tobar is writing the official book on the miners’ story, using previously undivulged details, including specifics on the miners’  first 17 days of entrapment before they had any contact with the outside world.

Banderas will be seen next in Robert Rodriguez’ “Machete Kills.”

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • Bruce Springsteen arrives for the New

    Bruce Springsteen Returns to NJ Hometown for Surprise 'Western Stars' Introduction

    Bruce Springsteen returned to his hometown of Freehold, New Jersey to offer a surprise introduction to the first public multiplex viewing of his concert/documentary film, “Western Stars.” Dressed simply in a brown jacket, Springsteen took a moment to say a few words at the AMC Freehold 14 movie theater on Saturday night. “We knew we [...]

  • Backstage in Puglia del film SPACCAPIETRE:

    'Gomorrah' Star Salvatore Esposito Set For De Serio Twins' 'The Stonebreaker'

    Salvatore Esposito, the Italian star who plays young mob boss Genny Savastano in Italy’s hit TV series “Gomorrah,” will soon be hitting the big screen toplining upcoming drama “The Stonebreaker” by twin directorial duo Gianluca and Massimiliano De Serio, who are known internationally for “Seven Acts of Mercy.” The De Serio twins are now in post on “Stonebreaker” [...]

  • Angelina Jolie is Maleficent in Disney’s

    Box Office: 'Maleficent: Mistress of Evil' Tops 'Joker,' 'Zombieland'

    “Maleficent: Mistress of Evil” is on track to give Disney another first place finish after scoring $12.5 million in Friday’s domestic ticket sales. If estimates hold, the Angelina Jolie-led film should finish the weekend with about $38 million — well below earlier forecasts but enough to top holdover “Joker” and fellow newcomer “Zombieland: Double Tap.” [...]

  • Maelle Arnaud

    Lumière Chief Programmer Maelle Arnaud: 'Film History Doesn't Have Parity'

    LYON, France   — As the Lumière Institute’s head programmer since 2001, Maelle Arnaud helped launched the Lumière Festival in 2009 and has watched it grow in international esteem over the decade that followed. This year, the festival ran 190 films across 424 screenings in theaters all over town. The festival will come to a [...]

  • Girl with Green Eyes

    Talking Pictures TV: Bringing the Past Back to Life in the U.K.

    LYON, France – Since its launch in 2015, Talking Pictures TV has become the fastest-growing independent channel in the U.K. with a growing library of British film and TV titles that span five decades, according to founder Noel Cronin. Noel Cronin attended the Lumière Festival’s International Classic Film Market (MIFC) in Lyon, France, where he [...]

  • Wings of Desire

    German Heritage Sector Applauds Increased Digitization, Preservation Funding

    LYON, France  — Germany’s film heritage sector is celebrating a new federal and state-funded initiative launching in January that will provide €10 million ($11.15 million) a year towards the digitization and preservation of feature films. Rainer Rother, the artistic director of the Deutsche Kinemathek, outlined the plan at a panel discussion at the Lumière Festival’s [...]

  • 'QT8: Quentin Tarantino, The First Eight'

    Film Review: 'QT8: Quentin Tarantino, The First Eight'

    In one of the intermittent revealing moments in “QT8: Quentin Tarantino, The First Eight,” a documentary about the films of Quentin Tarantino that’s like a familiar but tasty sundae for Quentin fans, we see Tarantino on the set of “Pulp Fiction,” shooting the iconic dance contest at Jack Rabbit Slim’s. As John Travolta and Uma [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content