×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

San Sebastian: Tornasol, Salado Team for Brechner’s ‘Memorias’

Solitary confinement drama unveiled at San Sebastian’s 4th Europe-Latin America Co-production Forum

SAN SEBASTIAN – Two of the Spanish-speaking world’s most energetic distaff producers, Mariela Besuievsky at Madrid Tornasol Films and Mariana Secco, based out of Salado in Uruguay’s Montevideo, are linking to produce “Memorias del calabozo,” an extraordinary true-life story of physical and above-all psychological resistance.

Alvaro Brechner, whose “Bad Day to Go Fishing” and “Mr. Kaplan” were both Uruguay’s Academy Award entries and the latter a Platino Award finalist, will direct. Latido Films, headed by Antonio Saura, will handle international sales.

Written by Brechner, and a majority Spanish co-production, “Memorias” was one of the standout projects presented at San Sebastian’s4th Europe-Latin America Co-production Forum, which runs Sept. 21-23.

A humanist survival drama, the true-fact based “Memorias” begins in September 1973 as Uruguay’s falls under military dictatorship and nine captured Tupamaro guerrilla members are subjected to a solitary confinement which will last 12 years. How they survived is ˝Memorias’” story.

“’Memorias del calabozo’” is inspired by biographical facts of men who were subjected to a diabolical experiment via which the military dictatorship aimed to drive them mad, imprisoning them for 12 years in a state where they couldn’t talk, and could hardly see, eat or sleep,” Brechner, who has finished a first-version screenplay, told Variety.

He added: “What I’m interested in is how, with their minds and bodies pushed to the limit, they managed to survive, maintain their will and strength, recreate their world, vision, fantasy. However important it is to remember the past, I’m more interested in what we can learn today from it.”

Based on the same-titled memoirs of Mauricio Rosencof and Eleuterio Fernandez Huidobro, the story “impacted both Alvaro and me a lot. We wanted Mariana on board because she has worked with Alvaro before and I’ve known her for now a very long time,” Besiuevsky said. “This is a story of resistance, about how you can bend somebody’s body but not their spirit and mind.”

Per Secco, “Memorias” represents a step-up in scale for Brechner, incorporating scenes of popular protests in the run-up to the dictatorship. Exteriors will be shot in Uruguay, interiors in Spain. “Memorias” has won an Ibermedia Development award.

Besiuevsky’s credits at Tornasol include Academy Award winning “The Secret in Their Eyes,” Alex de la Iglesia’s Venice Silver Lion and screenplay winner, and Francis Ford Coppola’s “Tetro.”

Producing crossover (“Mr Kaplan”) and youth targeting movies (“High Five”), Salado is one of Uruguay’s most prominent film production houses. Its current slate also includes Carlos Ameglio’s Uruguay-set romzomcom “Kiken,” which Ameglio and Secco unveiled at San Sebastian’s Europe-Latin America Co-Production Forum. They will now segue with the project to the Austin Fantastic Market.

Emilio Mayorga contributed to this report

More Film

  • Steve Bannon appears in The Brink

    Sundance Film Review: Stephen K. Bannon in 'The Brink'

    Stephen K. Bannon drinks Kombucha (who knew?), the fermented tea beverage for health fanatics that tastes like…well, if they ever invented a soft drink called Germs, that’s what Kombucha tastes like. In “The Brink,” Alison Klayman’s fly-on-the-wall, rise-and-fall-and-rise-of-a-white-nationalist documentary, Bannon explains that he likes Kombucha because it gives him a lift; he drinks it for [...]

  • Walt Disney Archives Founder Dave Smith

    Walt Disney Archives Founder Dave Smith Dies at 78

    Walt Disney Archives founder Dave Smith, the historian who spent 40 years cataloging and preserving the company’s legacy of entertainment and innovation, died Friday in Burbank, Calif. He was 78. Smith served as Disney’s chief archivist from 1970 to 2010. He was named a Disney Legend in 2007 and served as a consultant to the [...]

  • Oscar OScars Placeholder

    Cinematographers Praise Academy Reversal: 'We Thank You for Your Show of Respect'

    Cinematographers who fought the decision to curtail four Oscar presentations have praised the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for reversing the exclusions. “We thank you for your show of respect for the hard-working members of the film community, whose dedication and exceptional talents deserve the public recognition this reversal now allows them to enjoy,” [...]

  • Peter Parker and Miles Morales in

    'Spider-Man: Into the Spiderverse' Colored Outside the Lines

    The well-worn superhero genre and one of its best-known icons are unlikely vehicles for creating a visually fresh animated feature. But Sony Pictures Animation’s work on the Oscar-nominated animated feature “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” shows throwing out the rule book and letting everyone play in the creative sandbox can pay off big. “I think we [...]

  • Denis Villeneuve

    Denis Villeneuve's 'Dune' Gets November 2020 Release Date

    Warner Bros. has scheduled Legendary’s science-fiction tentpole “Dune” for a Nov. 20, 2020, release in 3D and Imax. “Aquaman” star Jason Momoa is in negotiations to join the “Dune” reboot with Timothee Chalamet, Javier Bardem, Rebecca Ferguson, Stellan Skarsgard, Dave Bautista, Josh Brolin, Oscar Isaac, and Zendaya. Production is expected to launch in the spring [...]

  • James Bond Spectre

    Bond 25 Moved Back Two Months to April 2020

    James Bond will arrive two months later than planned as MGM moved back the release date on the untitled Bond 25 movie from Feb. 14 to April 8, 2020 — a Wednesday before the start of Easter weekend. It’s the second delay for Bond 25. MGM and Eon originally announced in 2017 that the film [...]

  • Fast and Furious 8

    'Fast and Furious 9' Release Date Pushed Back Six Weeks

    Universal Pictures has shifted “Fast and Furious 9” back six weeks from April 10 to May 22, 2020 — the start of the Memorial Day weekend. It’s the second backwards shift for the title. In 2017, Universal moved the film back a year from April 19, 2019, to April 10, 2020. Both dates fall on [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content