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PRODUCTION Spain

Pedro Almodóvar set to shoot Pain & Glory this summer

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- The Spanish filmmaker will once again be teaming up with three of his pet actors – Penélope Cruz, Julieta Serrano and Antonio Banderas – plus Asier Etxeandía

Pedro Almodóvar set to shoot Pain & Glory this summer
Director Pedro Almodóvar (© El Deseo/Nico Bustos)

A few days ago, when Mayor of Madrid Manuela Carmena, acting on behalf of the city council, named Andalusian singer Raphael (whose latest foray into cinema was My Big Night [+see also:
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 by Álex de la Iglesia) and Manchegan filmmaker Pedro Almodóvar adopted sons of the city, the latter let slip that he would be shooting his next movie in the Spanish capital this summer. The alarm was swiftly raised, as each and every project undertaken by the director of Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown tends to become a media phenomenon. And yesterday, his production outfit, El Deseo, confirmed that the two-time Oscar winner (for Talk to Her [+see also:
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 and All About My Mother) would indeed be setting to work in July to film what will be his 21st feature: Pain & Glory [+see also:
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interview: Antonio Banderas
Q&A: Pedro Almodóvar
film profile
]
. His regular actors Penélope Cruz, Julieta Serrano and Antonio Banderas will be heading up the cast, flanked by Basque thesp Asier Etxeandía.

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According to that same statement, this is a film, written by Almodóvar himself, which tackles how complicated it is to separate creation – both cinematic and theatrical – from life itself: in the words of the Julieta [+see also:
film review
trailer
Q&A: Pedro Almodóvar
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]
director, it’s about “a series of encounters, some physical and others recalled decades later, of a film director in his twilight years: his first and second loves, his mother, mortality, an actor he once worked with, the 1960s, the 1980s, the present, and emptiness, the immense void in the face of his inability to continue filming”. And so, as was the case in Law of Desire and Bad Education [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
, the main character is a filmmaker, which means the plot would seem to include some autobiographical elements, something that we have also seen in some of his other films, such as Volver [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Agustín Almodóvar
interview: Carmen Maura
interview: Pedro Almodóvar
interview: Pénélope Cruz
film profile
]
and The Flower of My Secret.

As for the cast, this will be the sixth time that Penélope Cruz has put herself at the beck and call of a director who propelled her to stardom, and it will be Antonio Banderas’ seventh time working with him: the most recent occasion when they both collaborated with Almodóvar was a fleeting appearance in I’m So Excited [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
. For his part, Asier Etxeandía (Bilbao, 1975), who we saw not long ago playing a transsexual in The Open Door [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
, put in a minor appearance, as a blind waiter, in Broken Embraces [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Pedro Almodóvar
film profile
]
, but was edited out of the final cut. Seasoned and ever-excellent actress Julieta Serrano (Barcelona, 1933) appeared briefly – dressed as Scarlett O’Hara – in Almodóvar’s first film, Pepi, Luci, Bom and Other Girls Like Mom, and played the Mother Superior in an enclosed convent of nuns in Dark Habits, followed by appearances in Matador, Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down! and Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown: in the latter three movies, she acted alongside Antonio Banderas.

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(Translated from Spanish)

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