Penelope Cruz to Reunite with Antonio Banderas for the Spanish-Language Film “Competencia Oficial”

Penélope Cruz is proving her competence…

The 45-year-old Spanish actress is set to star opposite Antonio Banderas in the Spanish-language feature Competencia Oficial, which is due to get underway in Spain at the end of February. 

Penelope Cruz & Antonio Banderas

Veteran Argentine actor Oscar Martínez will also star.

Banderas and Martínez will play actors with very different track records whose methods clash during the preparation for a movie financed by a notorious and over-eager millionaire. Cruz will play the film’s prestigious but eccentric director.

The film is co-written and co-directed by Argentine filmmaking duo Mariano Cohnand Gastón DupratAndrés Dupratalso scripted. 

Additional cast includes José Luis GómezCarlos HipólitoKoldo OlabarriIrene EscolarNagore AramburuPilar Castro and Juan Grandinetti.

This is the latest project to feature Cruz and Banderas…

They most recently starred in Pedro Almodovar’s Pain and Glory. They’ve also starred in Almodovar’s I’m So Excited.

A release date for Competencia Oficial has yet to be announced.

Paz Vega to Star in the Neo-Noir Thriller “American Night”

It’s a big Night for Paz Vega… 

The 43-year-old Spanish actress will star in American Night, a neo-noir thriller helmed by first-time film director Alessio Jim Della Valle.

Paz Vega

Vega, who rose to acclaim in the United States after starring opposite Adam Sandler in Spanglish, will star opposite Jonathan Rhys MeyersEmile Hirsch and Jeremy Piven in the film.

Written by Della Valle, the plot follows Michael Rubino (Hirsch) who has just become the Don of the New York Mafia, but his greatest dream is to devote his life to painting and become a great artist. John Kaplan (Meyers), an art dealer, may feel like his life is in shambles, but he still has the best eye for spotting fakes in the world. Their paths, apparently distant, cross when Andy Warhol’s Pink Marilynis stolen, setting off a series of unexpected events that upend their lives.

Vega will play Sarah, who works as a museum curator and has earned her success without any shortcuts. Her only problem is being hopelessly in love with Kaplan

Rounding out the cast are Fortunato CerlinoAnnabelle BelmondoMara Lane, and Alba Amira Ramadaniwith cameo appearances featuring Michael MadsenMaria Grazia CucinottaMarco Leonardi, and international popstar Anastacia, who is writing and performing the song and main musical theme for the film.

The film also features artwork by Andy Warhol, Mario SchifanoJeff KoonsAnnamaria BarbaroGotti BernhoftTullio CraliDavide Dall’OssoEmanuele GiannelliAnthony MomanKouhei NakamaAndrea Roggi, and Simon Thompson.

Vega’s previous credits include I’m So ExcitedMary of Nazareth, 10 Items or Less and Grace of Monaco.

Almodóvar to Receive the WGA West’s Jean Renoir Award

Pedro Almodóvar is the write man on top…

The 65-year-old Spanish filmmaker, who earned France’s Prix Lumiere in October for his lifetime of filmmaking achievements, will be feted as this year’s recipient of the Writers Guild of America West’s Jean Renoir Award, which celebrates an international writer who has advanced the literature of motion pictures and made outstanding contributions to the profession of screenwriting.

Pedro Almodovar

Almodóvar has written, directed, and produced more than 20 feature films over the last three decades and won the Original Screenplay Academy Award for 2002’s Talk To Her, for which he also received an Oscar nod for best director.

His other films include Women On The Verge Of A Nervous Breakdown, Volver, Bad Education, Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down!, High Heels, Kika, The Flower Of My Secret, Live Flesh and All About My Mother.

His most recent film was the 2013 comedy I’m So Excited, and he’s currently prepping his next film, Silencio.

“Almodóvar – the first name is almost unnecessary – is a genius, is a flower, is a guiding light: the last, best son of Buñuel and so much more than that,” said WGA West VP Howard Rodman in announcing the honor. “His screenplays, which he directs with passion and fine care, have taught us about the exteriors of his native land and the interiors of our own hearts.”

Almo will receive his special prize at the WGAW’s Awards ceremony on February 14.

Almodovar’s Next Project “Silencio” is “A Return to the Cinema of Women”

Pedro Almodovar is ready for a little silencio…

The 65-year-old Spanish filmmaker, who earned France’s Prix Lumiere in October for his lifetime of filmmaking achievements, has told Financial Times that his next project will be a film called Silencio.

Pedro Almodovar

“It’s a return to the cinema of women,” he said of the film, “of great female protagonists, and it’s a hard-hitting drama, which excites me.”

Almodovar, whose last film was 2013’s I’m So Excited, revealed that the Silencio script has been completed, with the film set to begin shooting in April.

He said that the film is currently casting but that the parts don’t quite fit for the actors with whom he typically works.

“It’s called Silencio because that’s the principal element that drives the worst things that happen to the main female protagonist,” he continued.

Almodovar won the best foreign-language film Oscar for 1999’s All About My Mother and the original screenplay Oscar for 2002’s Talk to Her.

Almodóvar’s “I’m So Excited!” Receives Dorian Award for Campy Flick

Pedro Almodóvar’s most recent film is the gay and lesbian critics choice…

The Gay and Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association (GALECA) has bestowed the 64-year-old Spanish filmmaker’s I’m So Excited! with its Campy Flick honors.

I'm So Excited Poster

The film takes place on a plane headed to Mexico and features an eccentric ensemble, including bisexual pilots Benito and Alex, gay stewards Ulloa, Fajardo and Joserra, and a plane full of bizarre characters who are in for the ride that could determine the rest of their lives when the plane’s landing gear malfunctions.

The group, which comprises 80 entertainment journalists in the U.S. and Europe, unveiled the winners of its annual Dorian Awards today.

GALECA will hold a toast for its winners on March 9 at a location in Hollywood to be announced.

Click here to see the complete list of Dorian Award winners.

Almodóvar’s “I’m So Excited” to Premiere in Mexico at ES.CINE Festival

Pedro Almodóvar’s new film project will be flying high into Mexico…

I’m So Excited, the latest film from the 63-year-old Spanish director, will be screened at Mexico’s ES.CINE, according to organizers of the festival, which celebrates Spanish and Ibero-American films.

I'm So Excited Poster

I’m So Excited, known as Los amantes pasajeros in Spanish, debuted in Spain three months ago.

It will have its Mexican premiere at the July 5-11 festival, which will feature a total of 13 films from Spain and Latin America.

ES.CINE will also pay homage to Spanish filmmaker Jose Juan Bigas Luna, who died in April at the age of 67, with screenings of four of his most important movies: Las edades de Lulu, Jamon, jamon, Huevos de oro and La teta y la luna.

Bigas Luna helped launched the careers of future international stars like Javier Bardem, Penelope Cruz, Ariadna Gil and Jordi Molla.

Es.Cine plans to reconvene in October to present the Luis Buñuel awards, created to recognize iconic figures in Ibero-American cinema.

I’m So Excited had its U.S. premiere in LA earlier this month at the Los Angeles Film Festival. It opened in New York and LA this weekend.

Vega to Star in “Kill the Messenger”

Don’t blame Paz Vega if she kills the messenger

The 37-year-old Spanish actress has joined the cast of Kill the Messenger, Focus Features’ adaptation of the true-life drama book by Nick Schou.

Paz Vega

Vega, who makes a cameo appearance in Pedro Almodóvar’s highly anticipated comedy I’m So Excited, is joining Jeremy Renner in the film.

Michael Cuesta, who has helmed episodes of Homeland and Dexter, is directing.

Messenger tells the true story of Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Gary Webb who through his reporting exposed the CIA’s involvement in helping Nicaragua’s Contra rebels import cocaine into California during the 1980s. The agency then tried to discredit him, which ultimately led to his “committing suicide,” though with two bullets to his head.

Vega will play the girlfriend of a wealthy dealer who is in jail and hopes that Webb can get him out.

Production is expected to start in Atlanta this August.

Vega will appear in Grace of Monaco as legendary opera singer Maria Callas opposite Nicole Kidman and recently wrapped Paul W.S. Anderson‘s historical drama Pompeii.

Almodóvar’s “I’m So Excited” to Premiere in North America at the Los Angeles Film Festival

Pedro Almodóvar’s latest film will be taking flight in Los Angeles this June…

The 63-year-old Spanish filmmaker’s “light, very light comedy” I’m So Excited, which will open in New York and LA in late June, will have it’s North American premiere on opening night of the 19th annual Los Angeles Film Festival on June 13.

Pedro Almodovar

The film’s debut will come nearly two weeks before the Spanish-language comedy’s U.S. platform release on June 28 via Sony Pictures Classics.

I’m So Excited opened in Spain on March 8 and is currently opening throughout Europe.

I'm So Excited Poster

Penelope Cruz and Antonio Banderas are among the ensemble cast of the comedy, which is set on an airplane flight where nothing seems to be going right.

The film festival, produced by Film Independent, teamed with Sony Pictures Classics last year to premiere the Oscar-winning documentary Searching For Sugar Man.

The LAFF will run through June 23 and spotlight more than 200 feature films, shorts, and music videos, representing more than 30 countries.

New Trailer for Almodóvar’s “I’m So Excited” Released

Following the release of a teaser trailer for Pedro Almodóvar‘s highly anticipated comedy I’m So Excited, Sony Pictures Classics has released a full trailer for the film.

I'm So Excited Poster

The full trailer for the 61-year-old Spanish director’s first comedy in nearly 20 years helps fill out the story a little bit, as well as offers a glimpse of Penélope Cruz and Antonio Banderas’ cameo roles.

The film is a comedy about what happens on a plane after a psychic onboard predicts it’s going to crash.

I’m So Excited is set for limited release on June 28 in the United States.

Almodóvar’s “I’m So Excited” to Open in New York & LA on June 28

It looks like Pedro Almodóvar’s next film will be taking flight in the country’s two major markets this summer…

Pedro Almodovar

Sony Pictures Classics will debut the 63-year-old Spanish filmmaker’s “light, very light comedy” I’m So Excited in New York and Los Angeles on June 28, according to Exhibitor Relations.

Starring Javier Cámara, Cecilia Roth, Lola Dueñas and Raúl Arévalo, I’m So Excited – originally called Los amantes pasajeros – takes place entirely on an airplane.

I'm So Excited Poster

Almodóvar shared a trailer for the film during  retrospective of his work in London last December.

The film includes cameo appearances by Antonio Banderas, Penélope Cruz and Paz Vega.