Begin Again Films Acquires Santiago Maza’s “State of Silence” Documentary

Santiago Maza’s latest project is going global…

Madrid-based Begin Again Films has acquired the Mexican documentary filmmaker-screenwriter’s State of Silence, produced by Diego Luna and La Corriente del Golfo, the shingle he runs with Gael García Bernal.

Santiago MazaThe sales agency and distributor, which acquired international rights with the exception of North America and Latin America, has also unveiled the film’s first trailer.

State of Silence, which traces the harrowing stories of four journalists who risk their lives in pursuit of truth and transparency in Mexico, will have its world premiere simultaneously this month at the Tribeca and Guadalajara Film Festivals before competing at the Sheffield DocFest for its European premiere.

Detailing the endangered state of press freedom in Mexico, the documentary follows the journalists’ journeys as they navigate treacherous terrain in their effort to shed light on the enduring suffering and anxiety experienced by their fellow citizens two decades after the so-called war on drugs began.

Their resolute commitment exposes them to the risk of reprisals as they willingly make themselves targets: Taking on the roles of investigators and chroniclers, they immerse themselves in the unimaginable violence perpetuated by a narco-political system formed by organized crime syndicates and corrupt local governments.

Mexico has for several years been one of the most dangerous countries in the world for journalists. Since the year 2000, 163 journalists have been murdered and another 32 have gone missing, according to British human rights organization Article 19. In 99% of cases, the murders of journalists remain unsolved.

“In a country like Mexico, where impunity reaches alarming levels, journalism becomes a fundamental pillar,” said Luna, who produced alongside Maza. “It is independent journalism that guides us towards the truth. Today, I can affirm that my civic consciousness has been largely shaped by the tireless work and courage of the journalistic profession in my country. Hence, my concern and indignation arise from the conditions under which they carry out their work, leading to the creation of this documentary as a tool to denounce this situation.”

“As a documentarian, I have always had great respect for journalists,” Maza added. “Their work shapes us. It allows us to understand the world, and often, we act or think based on their interpretation of events. In Mexico, mistreatment of journalists occurs on many levels, from discrediting the profession to the most lethal consequence. The fact that their commitment to the truth costs many of them their lives is unacceptable.”

Begin Again Films said, “This urgent and intimate portrait serves as a timely reminder that the freedom of the press must not be allowed to remain under siege anywhere in the world.”

Maza also directed La Corriente del Golfo’s documentary web series El Tema, about the impact of the climate crisis in Mexico.

Carlos Eric Lopez Signs with Creative Artists Agency (CAA)

Carlos Eric Lopez has new representation…

The Mexican-American personality, founder, photographer, creative director and cultural curator with more than a decade of experience in the entertainment and lifestyle industry has signed with Creative Artists Agency (CAA).

Carlos Eric LopezLopez is behind the yearly Dia de Muertos celebration that brings together prominent figures from the Latino community, uniting hundreds of artists, tastemakers, executives, musicians, grassroots organizers and celebrities.

Last year’s celebration honored Gael García Bernal with the Life & Legacy award. He’s also the founder of Cura Lita, a beverage company that celebrates and honors the Latino community and its rich heritage.

“What excites me most is the opportunity to bring my culture, ancestry, and other Latinos with me on this new adventure,” Lopez said in a statement to Deadline. “Together, we’ll write a new chapter of success and empowerment for Latinos everywhere, because when one of us grows, we all grow.”

Last year, CAA launched of CAA Latino, an initiative to drive new opportunities to its Latino and Hispanic clients including Salma Hayek, Jennifer Lopez, Pedro Pascal, Jessica Alba, Angel Manuel Soto and Ana de Armas, while also expanding their roster with new talent.

In addition to Carlos Eric Lopez, On My Block star Jessica Marie Garcia recently joined the agency.

Raúl Castillo to Star in Paramount‘s “Smile” Sequel

Raúl Castillo has a new reason to smile

The 46-year-old Mexican American actor has been cast in Paramount‘s Smile sequel.

Raul CastilloCastillo is among a list of new cast additions that includes Miles Gutierrez-Riley, who starred in The Wilds.

The film’s plot and character details are being kept under wraps.

The duo joins the previously announced cast: Naomi Scott, Lukas Gage, Kyle Gallner, Rosemarie DeWitt and Dylan Gelula.

Smile writer and director returns for the second installment to again direct from his own script, with Temple Hill producing.

Smile 2 is currently slated for release on October 18, 2024, when it will go up against a still-unnamed title from Universal Pictures.

Going on to gross over $217M in theaters, even if it was initially set up for release on Paramount+, Smile was one of the great, unexpected box office successes of 2022. One of several original studio horror films of late to expand into a franchise, it tells the story of Dr. Rose Cotter (Sosie Bacon), a psychiatrist who becomes increasingly convinced she is being threatened by an uncanny entity, after witnessing a bizarre, traumatic incident involving a patient.

Castillo most recently starred in the Amazon film Cassandro opposite Gael Garia Bernal. He’s set to appear in HBO‘s Mark Ruffalo-led series, the Untitled Brad Ingelsby Task Force Project (w/t), currently in pre-production.

Prior television credits also include HBO’s Looking, Starz’s Vida and Netflix’s Atypical to name a few; Army of the DeadCha Cha Real SmoothKnives Out and We The Animals are among his film credits.

Gutierrez-Riley made his TV debut in the second season of Prime Video’s The Wilds, where he portrayed Ivan. In September 2022, Miles he starred in Paramount’s film adaptation of On The Come Up, which made its world premiere on the opening night of TIFF. Next up, he will star opposite Corey Fogelman in Tommy Dorfman’s directorial debut I Wish You All the Best, premiering at SXSW in March. It has also been announced that Gutierrez-Riley will star in Disney+’s WandaVision spinoff, Agatha: Darkhold Diaries.

Eiza González Starring in Guy Ritchie’s “Fountain of Youth” from Apple & Skydance

Eiza González is searching for the fountain of youth

The 33-year-old Mexican actress and singer will star opposite John Krasinski and Natalie Portman in Apple‘s Fountain of Youth.

Eiza GonzálezThe feature film, based on an original idea that will be directed by Guy Ritchie, hails from Skydance Media. The film will be produced for Apple by Skydance, Vinson Films and Project X Entertainment.

Written by James Vanderbilt, the film follows estranged siblings (Krasinski and Portman) who partner on a global heist to find the mythological Fountain of Youth. They must use their knowledge of history to follow clues on an epic adventure that will change their lives — and possibly lead to immortality.

Hailing from a first-look partnership between Apple and Skydance, Fountain of Youth has been a high priority for Skydance after getting a script from Vanderbilt that Deadline sources said “blew execs away,” but the studio needed the right package of talent before it moved forward with the film. Ritchie, who has been as busy as any director in town, had been eyeing the project since the spring, with Krasinski also circling it around the same time, but the dual strikes forced things to be put on pause.

The project reunites González with director Ritchie for a third time after recently wrapping production on their most recent collaboration on a new, untitled action film in which González stars alongside Jake Gyllenhaal and Henry Cavill. González will also star opposite Cavill in Ritchie’s upcoming The Ministry of Ungentlemanly Warfare, which will be released in theaters on April 19th.

González will next lead David Benioff and D.B Weiss’ series, 3 Body Problem for Netflix. The series debuts on the streaming platform on March 21st. She will also soon be starring in the boxing limited series, La Maquina, opposite Gael Garcia Bernal and Diego Luna. The show will debut as Hulu’s first Spanish language series. Also upcoming, González will star in the mystery sci-fi movie ASH directed by the musician Flying Lotus (aka Steven Ellison) opposite Aaron Paul.

Diego Luna & Gael García Bernal to Executive Produce “The Boys” Offshoot, “The Boys: Mexico”

Diego Luna and Gael García Bernal are bringing the boys south of the border

The 43-year-old Mexican actor, director and producer and the 44-year-old Mexican Golden Globe-winning actor and producer will executive produce and possibly appear in acting roles in The Boys: Mexico, a new series offshoot of The Boys from Blue Beetle writer Gareth Dunnet-Alcocer.

Gael García Bernal & Diego LunaDetails regarding the premise of the series are being kept under wraps.

A search is currently underway for a co-showrunner to join creator, writer and executive producer Dunnet-Alcocer, who is now working on the script.

The team behind The Boys: Mexico, which will be shot in the Latin American country, is working on budgets for the new series and they have yet to begin casting, sources said.

The Mexico-set offshoot comes from the main creative auspices behind the other series in The Boys franchise, the mothership’s developer Eric Kripke and his Kripke Enterprises, Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg’s Point Grey Pictures, Neil H. Moritz’s Original Film, Sony Pictures Television and Amazon MGM Studios. Loreli Alba is expected to oversee for Point Grey.

The Boys, based on the New York Times best-selling comic by Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson, shares a fun and irreverent take on what happens when superheroes—who are as popular as celebrities, as influential as politicians, and as revered as gods—abuse their superpowers rather than use them for good. Intent on stopping the corrupt superheroes, The Boys, a group of vigilantes, continue their heroic quest to expose the truth about The Seven and Vought—the multibillion-dollar conglomerate that manages the superheroes and covers up their dirty secrets. It’s the seemingly powerless against the super-powerful.

Following the breakout success of The Boys, which is headed to Season 4, two spinoff series were released in 2023: the animated The Boys Presents: Diabolical, which premiered in March, and the college-set spinoff Gen V, which recently concluded its first season and has been renewed for Season 2.

The Boys: Mexico is the latest project hailing from rising star Dunnet-Alcocer, who penned the screenplay for the Warner Bros. Pictures/DC Studios superhero feature film, Blue Beetle. Most recently, he wrote the screenplay for Sony’s El Muerto from director Jonás Cuarón. The Queretaro, Mexico native also wrote and executive produced Miss Bala in 2019. Additionally, Dunnet-Alcocer is attached as screenwriter of the Universal Pictures’ reimagination of Scarface.

Luna and García Bernal are veteran actors whose careers exploded following their collaboration in the hit 2001 Spanish-language feature Y Tu Mamá También directed by Alfonso Cuarón. They have reunited multiple times since then including in Rudo y Cursi (2008) and Casa de Mi Padre (2012).

Most recently Luna joined the Star Wars universe in the Disney+ TV series Andor, a prequel to Star Wars: Rogue One.

García Bernal most recently starred in the Amazon bio-drama Cassandro portraying the titular gay wrestler born Saúl Armendáriz.

The longtime friends and collaborators became producing partners in 2018 under their La Corriente del Golfo banner. Recent projects they produced include the aforementioned Cassandro and the series Pan y Circo hosted by Luna, both for Amazon.

Bad Bunny Trash-Talks Himself in New Promo for NBC’s Upcoming Episode of “Saturday Night Live”

Bad Bunny’s seeing double

In the latest Saturday Night Live promo, the 29-year-old Puerto Rican Grammy-winning superstar, this week’s host, squares off against this week’s musical guest, who so happens to be Bad Bunny.

Bad BunnyRiffing on the singer-actor’s professed love for professional wrestling, the promo features cast member James Austin Johnson as a WWE-style announcer interviewing a rather soft-spoken “Benito” – Bad Bunny’s birth name is Benito Antonio Martínez Ocasio – who says he’s not nervous about the hosting gig. “Hell, no. I love being silly,” says Benito.

At that point, a tougher-looking opponent enters the “ring” to smoke and a heavy metal accompaniment. “Oh my God!,” says Johnson. “It’s Bad Bunny!”

“Well, I’ve got a Weekend Update for you, amigo,” says the sunglass-wearing Bunny to Benito. “You suck.”

Bad Bunny, who was an SNL musical guest on February 20, 2021, has made regular appearances on WWE’s weekly television show Monday Night Raw.

The singer-rapper released his fifth solo album, Nadie Sabe Lo Que Va a Pasar Mañana, on October 13. He also appears in the 2023 biopic Cassandro starring Gael García Bernal as gay wrestler Saúl Armendáriz aka Cassandro.

Gael Garcia Bernal to Preside Over Jury at Rome Film Festival

Gael Garcia Bernal is taking a special lead role in Italy…

The 44-year-old Mexican actor and producer will preside over the jury of the upcoming Rome Film Festival.

Gael García BernalGarcia Bernal, who currently stars in the Amazon Prime film Cassandro, will be judging entries and bestowing prizes in the rebooted fest’s main section, which is now known as Progressive Cinema.

Films competing for Rome prizes include Spanish director Isabel Coixet’s Un Amor, about a young woman socially and sexually exploited by a rural patriarchy; Iranian director Farhad Delaram’s Achilles, in which a former filmmaker turned medic decides to help a female political prisoner escape from a psych ward; and French director Mehdi Fikri’s After The Fire, which turns on a French woman of North African descent who seeks justice after her younger brother dies suspiciously after being stopped by the police.

The Eternal City event’s upcoming 18th edition – which will run October 18-29 – will be the second since the appointment of RAI Cinema executive Paola Malanga as the fest’s artistic director and Gian Luca Farinelli, who heads the Bologna film archives, as president.

They have reshaped the Rome fest – which over the years has had it’s ups and downs – as a competitive event that has at its core a mix of mostly auteur titles, many with political themes, plus a panoply of more crowd pleasing films of different types screening out-of-competition.

Prime Video Releases Trailer for Gael García Bernal’s Gay Lucha Libra Luchador Film “Cassandro”

Gael García Bernal is wrestling with his future…

Amazon Prime has released the official trailer for Cassandro, starring the 44-year-old Mexican actor/producer and Bad Bunny.

Gael García Bernal, Amazon Prime, Cassandro, The film is based on the life of the wrestling and queer icon Cassandro, also known as the Liberace of Lucha Libre.

In the two-minute clip, the audience is introduced to Saúl Armendáriz (García Bernal) from El Paso, Texas, who dreams of becoming professional luchador after his father first introduced him to the sport. In the process, he transforms into Cassandro, an “exótico” who wrestles in drag.

“Are you a wrestler?” Bad Bunny asks García Bernal in the film’s new trailer. “Yes,” the Mexican actor responds. That’s the first interaction between the two in the teaser. Later in the clip, they are dancing, and there’s a first look at Bad Bunny as one of Cassandro’s love interests.

Roberta Colindrez, Perla de la Rosa, Joaquín Cosío and Raúl Castillo round out the biopic’s cast.

The world of wrestling is familiar to Bad Bunny. In 2021, the Grammy-winning Puerto Rican superstar ventured into the wrestling world by jumping off the top rope at the 2021 Royal Rumble. Most recently, the “Me Porto Bonito” singer defeated Damian Priest in a San Juan Street Fight at WWE’s premium live event Backlash in May.

After making its world premiere at the 2023 Sundance Film Festival in January, Cassandro is set to hit theaters on September 15, and will premiere on Prime Video Sept. 22.

Netflix Releases Trailer for Jennifer Lopez’s Action Film “The Mother”

Jennifer Lopez is mothering

“Where’s my baby?” says the 53-year-old Puerto Rican superstar’s character, known only as The Mother, in the first trailer for Netflix‘s forthcoming action film of the same name, which is set for a Mother’s Day weekend debut on May 12th.

Jennifer Lopez“You wasted FBI time trying to cut a deal for yourself, and seven agents were killed. This conversation now takes place on our terms,” an FBI official played by Edie Falco tells her. “Adrian Lovell and Hector Álvarez are still out there. You and I both know the only way you protect that child is to disappear.”

And disappear, the former assassin does. “You put her with good people, keep her safe,” Lopez tells a trusted character played by Omari Hardwick. “If there’s trouble, you let me know.” Of course, trouble comes for her around 12 years later, as villains played by Joseph Fiennes and Gael García Bernal have her daughter (Lucy Paez) kidnapped, with Lopez being forced to come out of hiding to save this girl to whom she’s now a total stranger.

“I’m a killer, but I’m also a mother,” says Lopez. “And I will die protecting her.”

Niki Caro directed the film, also starring Paul Raci, Jesse Garcia, Yvonne Senat Jones and more, from a script by Misha Green, Andrea Berloff and Peter Craig.

Lopez most recently led the rom-coms Shotgun Wedding and Marry Me for Lionsgate/Amazon and Universal Pictures, respectively. She’ll next be seen in Netflix’s sci-fi thriller Atlas with Simu Liu, Sterlking K. Brown and more, and recently signed on to star in the Amazon drama Unstoppable from Artists Equity, the new production company of Matt Damon and her husband Ben Affleck.

Gael García Bernal Starring in the Hitchcockian Thriller “Holland, Michigan”

Gael García Bernal is headed to the Midwest

The 44-year-old Mexican Golden Globe-winning actor/director will star opposite Nicole Kidman and Matthew Macfadyen in the Hitchcockian thriller Holland, Michigan.

Gael Garcia BernalFrom Prime Video, the film will be directed by Mimi Cave.

While Holland, Michigan is said to concern secrets that lurk beneath a Midwestern town, specifics as to the plot of the film scripted by Andrew Sodroski are under wraps.

Blossom Films’ Kidman and Per Saari are producing alongside Pacific View Management & ProductionsPeter Dealbert, and Churchill FilmsKate Churchill.

The film will stream in more than 240 countries and territories worldwide.

Garcia Bernal is known for his performances in the films Bad Education, The Motorcycle DiariesAmores perrosY tu mamá tambiénBabel, Coco and Old.

He won a Golden Globe for his role as Rodrigo de Souza in the series Mozart in the Jungle.