Benicio del Toro is joining the Cuban mafia…
The 49-year-old Puerto Rican-American actor will star in The Corporation, which takes place over the decades between the 1950s and 1980s in Miami and New York.
Based on T.J. English’s yet-to-be-published book The Corporation: An Epic Story of the Cuban American Underworld, del Toro will play Jose Miguel Battle Sr., who leads the eponymous and hugely powerful Cuban mafia. Born in Havana, Battle escaped to the U.S. following the rise of Fidel Castro. Alongside his team of fellow Cubans, Battle was trained by the CIA so that he could fight in the 1961 Bay of Pigs invasion.
Despite his name, things didn’t go so well for Battle during the attempted invasion, as he was captured, which led to him being imprisoned inside a Cuban prison. Battle failed to find the light side during his incarceration, and, when he was released, he headed straight back to the U.S. where he set off to build a huge criminal empire alongside the same posse of men that he fought with. His empire revolved around drug trafficking, gambling, and, even murder, and made him one of the most powerful crime bosses in the US until his death in 2007.
The nonfiction book will be published in winter 2017 by William Morrow. It’s being called a Cuban version of The Godfather and American Gangster.
del Toro is coming off a sizzling performance in Sicario, and this is an opportunity to play another badass character.
Paramount Studios and Appian Way have the film rights.