BUENOS AIRES — “Wild Tales” and “The Clan” sales agent Film Factory Ent has swooped on “The Blue Star” (“La Estrella Azul“), a fiction film inspired by the life of Spanish musician Mauricio Aznar, a fundamental and endearing figure on Spain’s 1990s rock scene.
The film also marks one of the most anticipated feature debuts of the year in Spain, Javier Macipe having carved out a reputation through his shorts, two of which – 2014’s “Children of the River” and 2019’s “Gastos incluídos” – scored Spanish Academy Goya nominations. Macipe was chosen last year as one of Variety’s 10 Spanish talents to track.
“I am very happy to once more board a project from Mod Producciones and Cimarrón,” said Film Factory head Vicente Canales. “Javier Macipe is one of Spanish cinema’s new talents. We are convinced that this musical journey turning on the recognised artist Mauricio Aznar will captivate the international market.”
Suspended by first-wave COVID-19 in March 2020 when it was shooting in Spain’s Zaragoza, following a tremendous battle to relaunch production, “The Blue Star” finally began shooting again this November, this time in Argentina, the real emotional heartland of the film, Macipe sustains.
Having shot in Santiago del Estero and Cerro Colorado, Córdoba, “The Blue Star” is now scheduled to wrap production in Argentina on Dec. 2, returning once more to shoot in Zaragoza, this time round in Feb. 2023.
“The Blue Star” is backed by two of the Spanish-speaking world’s most respected independent shingles, Mod Producciones (“While at War” “La Fortuna”) Alejandro Amenábar’s regular production partner, and Argentina’s Cimarrón Cine, whose recent credits include HBO Max series “Amsterdam.”
Set to be distributed in Spanish theaters by Wanda Vision, “The Blue Star” unspools in the ‘90s, as Aznar, a Spanish rock and roll musician trying to reconnect with his vocation, travels across South America, where in Santiago del Estero in Argentina’s deep North, he meets an elderly musician going through hard times.
Aznar is stunned by the man’s music and the part that it plays in community life. Their encounter leads to the creation of a Don Quixote-like duo with all the makings of an absolute commercial failure, the synopsis says.
The film is inspired by true and moving events. Aznar first turned eyes in Spain’s Zaragoza in the early 1980s with his first band, the Golden Zippers, sporting a rocker Pompadour quiff, large glasses and rockabilly rhythms.
Creating Mas Birras he composed with Gabriel Sopeña “Apuesta por el Rock y Roll,” which popularised by Heroes del Silencio, another Zaragoza band, becomes a ‘90s classic.
Other musicians would have attempted to cash in. Not so Aznar. As Más Birras’ popularity waned he became increasingly interested in Latin America, not just tango but chacareras, zambas and vidalas, which is where Macipe’s film lifts off.
The film, Macipe has said, continues Aznar’s dream of bringing Latin American rhythms to Spain, mixing them with modern pop.
“The Blue Star” is also produced by El Pez Amarillo, based out of Zaragoza, Aznar’s home city.
Recognising “The Blue Star’s” “arduous production process,” El Pez Amarillo’s Amelia Herñández said that the project “is one we always firmly believed in.” ”Thanks to our firm resolve and excellent understanding with Mod and Cimarrón, it has become a reality.”
Newer production partners La Charito Films, a Barcelona film financing-production company, and Argentina’s Prisma, have boarded the project as co-producers.
“‘The Blue Star’ is a very special project inspired by a truly beautiful real story, with which we connected reading the first draft screenplay,” said Mod Producciones’ Simón de Santiago. “Javier Macipe is an auteur with a unique voice. His first feature will be a pleasant surprise which can connect with broad audiences because of its truth and emotion.”
The production “fulfils two fundamental conditions in Cimarrón’s production policy,” added Hernán Musaluppi. “One is to maintain bonds with companies we’ve been working with down the years such as Mod and Film Factory.”
The other, he said, is to “continue betting on films of artistic risk knit by an auteurist vision.” “The Blue Star,” moreover, Musaluppi argued, is “a totally organic co-production, conceived to be shot in Spain and Argentina and which turns precisely on the two countries’ artistic roots.”
A world premiere is scheduled for late 2023 or early 2024.