Life’s a drag for Benicio del Toro…
The 48-year-old Puerto Rican actor and Oscar winner has come aboard as executive producer of Viva, director Paddy Breathnach’s new film having its World Premiere here at the Telluride Film Festival.
An Irish production shot in Cuba en Español, the film is about Jesus, a young man growing up in Havana who works as a hair and make up artist for drag acts. What he REALLY wants to do is perform on stage himself, a development that leads to major conflicts with his father who has just been released from prison.
Hector Medina stars as Jesus with a supporting cast including Jorge Perugorria and Luis Alberto Garcia. Screenwriter Mark O’ Halloran also is featured in the film.
del Toro was most recently an executive producer of Escobar: Paradise Lost, a film in which he also starred that had its World Premiere at last year’s Telluride Film Festival.
He has produced other films in which he had roles including Che and The Wolfman, but his participation in a behind-the-scenes role on Viva appears to be his first in a film he does not appear since Lovesickness in 2007.
del Toro next appears in Lionsgate’s Sicario, which debuted at the Cannes Film Festival and will have its North American premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival later this month in advance of its September 18 release.
He’s already getting Oscar buzz for his intensely searing role in the film.