Mexico’s Peninsula Films & Entertainment and Monica Lozano’s Alebrije Prods. have teamed up to produce feature film “El Hombre de la Multitud” (“The Man of the Crowd,” a working title in English) about Mexican tabloid photojournalist Enrique Metinides.
His iconic, at times grisly, photos chronicled scenes of accidents, crimes and historical events from the 1940s until 1997 in Mexico. Now 88 years old, Metinides’ career in “nota roja” photojournalism began at the age of 10 when he started riding along with policemen with the camera his father gave him. His first photo was published when he was just 12. By the age of 13, he was hired by tabloid La Prensa, albeit unpaid, and earned the nickname “El Niño” (‘The Boy’).
To be directed by Jose Manuel Cravioto, whose credits include his feature debut “Mexican Gangster” and TV shows “Señor Avila,” “El Chapo,” and “Diablero,” “El Hombre de la Multitud” begins with Metinides as a child who’s toying with the camera he got for his birthday when he stumbles upon the corpse of a woman in the forest. That image haunts him and years later, he becomes an obsessive photographer for the tabloids in mid-50s Mexico City. After chronicling a series of tragedies, he becomes aware of a strange man that appears in all of his pictures. As he digs into the background of this enigmatic stranger, he discovers an underground scene that reveals not only the underside of politics, but of the supernatural.
“I would describe this film as a thriller, a film noir, based on real persons and events,” said Cravioto who has been developing the film with producer Eduardo ‘Lalo’ Diaz of Peninsula Films for nearly two years.
Screenwriter Gibran Portela is known for co-writing such award-winning Mexican films as Diego Quemada Diez’s “La Jaula de Oro,” Alonso Ruizpalacios’ “Güeros” and “La Region Salvaje” by Amat Escalante.
Portela co-writes the script with novelist-screenwriter Bernardo Esquinca, winner of the Novela Negra National Award for “The Amazing Adventures of the Amazing Edgar Allan Poe.” Esquinca was also an advisor on the Netflix-produced “Diablero.” Metinides serves as an executive producer.
Diaz, who produced the upcoming doc “Cartas a Distancia” (“Letters from a Distance”) – to which multi-Oscar nominated American composer and pianist Philip Glass (“The Hours”) has contributed key music – will be attending MipTV as he consolidates funding for the film. “We want to start filming by the start of next year and we already have a cast in mind,” he told Variety.