Movistar Plus+ Partners on Alauda Ruiz de Azúa’s New Film “Los domingos”

Alauda Ruiz de Azúa’s latest project has new support…

Movistar Plus+, Spain’s most-viewed pay television operator, is partnering on Los domingos, a new film from the 46-year-old Spanish filmmaker and Lullaby director and the producers of that critically acclaimed film.

Alauda Ruiz de AzúaA Movistar Plus+ Original, Los domingos is set in and will shoot in Ruiz de Azúa’s native Basque country, said Nahikari Ipiña at Sayaka Producciones.

Now in development, Los domingos is produced by Movistar Plus+ and Sayaka and Marisa Fernández ArmenterosBuenapinta Media, Sandra Hermida at Think Studio and Colosé Producciones and Manu Calvo.

Los domingos is a co-production between Movistar Plus+ and four producers and as independent producers for us that’s important,” Fernández Armenteros said at Cannes.

Los domingos, which shoots in the first half of 2025, is a drama, although plot details are under wraps.

“It is such luck to accompany Alauda in Los domingos after Lullaby success with audiences and critics. We are moved again by her talent in picturing the contradictions of her characters, and her unique visions when depicting life,” Los domingos’ producers said Friday in a joint statement.

Sold by Latido, and bowing in Berlin’s 2022 Panorama section, Lullaby swept Spain’s Malaga Festival, taking eight awards including best picture, a rare achievement.

Endorsed by Pedro Almodóvar as “undoubtedly the best debut in Spanish cinema for years,” Lullaby was distributed in Spain by BTeam Pictures. It over-performed notably in Spain, grossing €823, 933 ($880,847) at theaters, before scooping three Goya Awards, including best new director and gongs for both main actresses, Laia Costa and Susi Sánchez.

“Movistar Plus+ wants to bet on auteurs with a key vision but also the potential to reach a broad public, and ‘Los domingos’ is a case in point,” said Guillermo Farré, Movistar Plus+ head of original films & Spanish cinema.

Los domingos will be a Movistar Plus+ Original “but Movistar Plus+’s strategy when it produces films is to co-produce,” he added.

Pedro Pascal to Star in Ari Aster’s Latest Film “Eddington”

Pedro Pascal is going west(ern) once again…

The 48-year-old Chilean actor, who recently won his first SAG Award, will star in Ari Aster’s latest film Eddington.

Pedro PascalPascal, who recently starred in Pedro Almodovar’s Spanish Western drama short film Strange Way of Life, will star opposite Joaquin Phoenix, Emma Stone, Luke Grimes, Austin Butler, Deirdre O’Connell, Micheal Ward and Clifton Collins Jr. in the project.

Aster is the visionary filmmaker behind the horror films Hereditary and Midsommar, as well as the dark comedy Beau Is Afraid.

Plot details are under wraps, though the project has been discussed as a Western.

Aster will direct from his own script and produce alongside Lars Knudsen under their Square Peg banner. Darius Khondji, the Academy Award-winning cinematographer behind Bardo and Uncut Gems, is also aboard the project for his first collaboration with Aster.

Production on the film kicks off this week.

Pascal’s credits include The Last of Us, Narcos and The Mandalorian.

Miguel Ángel Silvestre to Star in Spanish Miniseries “Lucio’s Treasure”

Miguel Ángel Silvestre has discovered a new treasure

The 41-year-old Spanish actor will topline the miniseries Lucio’s Treasure, a real-life inspired project co-produced by Spain’s Vértice360 and Friki Films with Red Arrow International Studios.

Miguel Ángel Silvestreilvestre will play the leading role of Lucio Urtubia, considered a modern Robin Hood who nearly bankrupted Citibank of America in the 1980s. Whether he was caught is another matter.

Structured as a six-episode, one-hour drama, the series is scheduled to lens in English by 2025.

Created by brothers Hugo and Roger Menduiña, Lucio’s Treasure is produced by Friki’s CEO Ana Manresa and Alberto Rull, Vertice’s EVP production and content.

The U.K.’s Anthony Alleyne has joined the series as co-creator, writer and executive co-producer.

Defined by Rull as “an ambitious series, both creatively and in terms of budget,” Lucio’s Treasure is set in Paris and New York, “aimed at being a world-class co-production with large appeal to global audiences.”

Red Arrow International Studios is co-producing and also managing international sales on the project.

The miniseries has been selected for the upcoming edition of MIA’s drama co-production market and pitching forum, which takes place in Rome on October 9-13.

The story follows Lucio, an apparently modest Spanish bricklayer living in Paris, hiding the brains behind the largest network of traveller’s check counterfeiters that led Citibank down a path towards ruin.

Silvestre’s acting career lifted-off in 2008, playing the role of masculine drug dealer Rafael Duque in Telecinco’s popular Spanish TV primetime series Sin tetas no hay paraíso.

In 2013 he toplined the Atresmedia-Bambú hit melodrama Velvet and played in Pedro Almodóvar’s comedy I’m So Excited.

Silvestre broke out with international roles in 2014, first playing in Lana Wachowski’s Netflix series Sense8 and then joining the Narcos Season 3 cast in 2016.

In 2019, he played a far different role, the Death Row-sentenced Pablo Ibar in BambúMovistar Plus+ miniseries En el corredor de la muerte. He also worked in Álex de la Iglesia’s HBO series 30 monedas.

After starring in Álex Pina’s action thriller series Sky Rojo, he joined the fifth part of Netflix flagship drama Money Heist.

Silvestre’s most recent leading work role was in the Paramount+ original series Los enviados, the platform’s biggest Spanish-language hit to date, created by Argentine Oscar-winning writer-director Juan José Campanella.

Guillermo del Toro Set to Take Part in “Visionaries” Conversation at Toronto International Film Festival

Guillermo del Toro will be sharing his vision

The 58-year-old Mexican Oscar-winning filmmaker and author will be making a special appearance at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF).

Guillermo del ToroFor this year’s 48th edition of the festival, del Toro is scheduled to take part in an onstage conversation as part of the Visionaries section.

del Toro, a three-time Academy Award winner, will focus his talk on the liberating potential of fantastical worlds; the magic thatexists within the details; and his wide-spanning career crafting intricate and cinematic love letters.

del Toro’s talk is made possible with the support of the Directors Guild of Canada.

del Toro’s award-winning projects include Pan’s Labyrinth, The Shape of Water and Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio.

Previously, TIFF announced that Pedro Almodovar, who is already receiving a tribute at the fest, would be taking part in a sit down conversation.

All the sessions for TIFF’s Industry Conference which spans the programming of Visionaries, Dialogues, Perspectives, Connections, Microsessions and Spotlights, will take place at the Glenn Gould Studio.

“Our Industry Conference aims to be a pivotal platform for thought-provoking discussions by industry leaders,” said Anita Lee, TIFF Chief Programming Officer. “The sessions and speakers reflect our commitment to diverse perspectives and creative exploration towards sparking innovation within the industry.”

“This year’s event offers something for everyone, whether you are an emerging creator or experienced
producer, and its scale and curation supports our growing industry attendance,” said Geoff Macnaughton, Senior Director, Industry & Theatrical.

Here’s a look at this year’s Industry Conference participants:

VISIONARIES
Inspirational onstage conversations with individuals who are forging creative and business pathways in the industry. Speakers include:

● Spike Lee — An in-depth conversation discussing the process of forging a distinct filmic language throughout his expansive, multi-decade career.
● Ladj Ly — A discussion on his bold approach and unwavering commitment to telling stories that explore deeply personal portraits about communities revolting against broken systems.
● Guillermo del Toro — A conversation about the liberating potential of fantastical worlds; the magic that exists within the details; and his wide-spanning career crafting intricate and cinematic love letters. Made possible with the support of the Directors Guild of Canada.
● See-Saw Films — A celebratory talk on the company’s remarkable 15 years of delivering critically acclaimed stories to global audiences, including The King’s Speech, Lion, The Power of the Dog, and many more.
● Nadine Labaki — With more than a decade’s worth of accolades under her belt, director, writer, and actor Nadine Labaki will discuss her highly meticulous creative process, her devout interest in life’s peculiarities, and the capacity for cinema to bring about social change.
● Lucy Walker — A discussion on Doc Day, focusing on Walker’s incredible career, including her long friendship with Doc Society co-founder Jess Search, who died this summer. Programmed by Thom Powers.
● Anand Patwardhan — A talk on Doc Day with Patwardhan, a singular figure of independent documentary in India who has given inspiration to a flourishing of new directors today. Programmed by Thom Powers.

DIALOGUES
Conversations on the art and craft of storytelling, featuring screen-based creators (directors, producers, and series creators) and industry professionals. Dialogues sessions include:

● The Dead Don’t Hurt with Viggo Mortenson, Regina Solórzano, and Jeremy Thomas. Supported by Directors Guild of Canada Ontario.
● Feature Film Development with Sara Rastogi (Hoorae Media) and Kate Oh (Monkeypaw Productions).
● Directors Nora El Hourch (Sisterhood) and Katja Gauriloff (Je’vida). Programmed by Jason Ryle.
● Directors Cord Jefferson (American Fiction) and Lulu Wang (Expats).
● Producers Toufik Ayadi and Christophe Barral (Les Indésirables) and Farhana Bhula (How to Have Sex).
● Short Cuts to First Features with Fawzia Mirza and Andria Wilson Mirza (The Queen of My Dreams), Zarrar Kahn and Anam Abbas (In Flames). Programmed by Jason Anderson.
● What is the Documentary Marketplace Today? (Doc Day) A panel of industry figures analyze where opportunities still exist for creative documentaries. Programmed by Thom Powers.

PERSPECTIVES
Moderated and focused discussions on the current state and future of the industry. The Media Partner for Perspectives is Screen International. Perspective sessions include:

● AI and Film: Bridging the Gap Between Innovation and Responsibility — Leading experts on AI discuss the technology’s long-term sustainability in the industry as it relates to data, ethics, and filmmaking. Programmed by Manal Siddiqui.
● The Current Landscape of International Series Production — Yi Qiao, Director Drama, ZDF; Navi Lamba, Head of Development, BBC Comedy; Jamie Lynn, EVP Co-Production & Distribution, Fremantle; and Joe Lewis, CEO, Amplify Pictures.
● Celebrating the Cinema of the Korean Diaspora — Guests include: outstanding filmmakers Anthony Shim (dir. Riceboy Sleeps), Albert Shin (dir. Disappearance at Clifton Hill, In Her Place), and Christina Oh (prod. Minari, Okja). Presented by The Korean Film Council.
● On African Cinemas and its Industries — Apolline Traoré (dir. Sira), Chioma Onyenwe (prod. I Do Not Come To You By Chance), Tshepiso Chikapa-Phiri (prod. Death of a Whistleblower), and Mehret Mandefro, Director of Development & Partnerships, Realness. Programmed by Nataleah Hunter-Young, International Programmer (Africa & Arab West Asia).
● Seize Control of Your Distribution (Doc Day) — Peter Broderick, who has spent decades helping independent filmmakers design and implement cutting-edge distribution strategies, returns with a new manifesto, along with case studies of documentary projects that made far-reaching impact and profits using strategies to build sustainable careers. Programmed by Thom Powers.
● DOC’s “Getting Real” Report (Doc Day) — The Documentary Organization of Canada will share their findings for the first time and explain why this latest edition of their “Getting Real” reports could be a game-changer for documentary filmmakers. Programmed by Thom Powers

Pedro Almodóvar to Take Part in Toronto International Film Festival’s Conversation With… Series

Pedro Almodóvar is preparing for a special conversation

The 73-year-old Spanish Oscar-winning film director and screenwriter will appear as part of the Toronto International Film Festival’s Conversation With… (ICW) series for this year’s fest.

Pedro AlmodovarIn addition to Almodovar, others taking part in the series include Hong Kong actor Andy Lau and Concrete Utopia Korean stars Lee Byung-hun and Park Seo-jun.

“TIFF’s 2023 In Conversation With… series exemplifies our belief that film can ignite perspectives and fuel transformation,” said Anita Lee, TIFF Chief Programming Officer. “We are delighted to welcome a powerhouse lineup of international iconoclasts from Spain, South Korea, and Hong Kong for film lovers of all genres.”

Almodóvar is already set to receive TIFF’s Jeff Skoll Award in Impact Media this year at the fest’s Tribute Awards. His short, Strange Way of Lifewhich played at Cannes, will also make its North American premiere at TIFF. Short follows the relationship between a sheriff (Ethan Hawke) and a rancher (Pedro Pascal) and their shared past.

Pedro Almodóvar to Be Honored at This Year’s TIFF Awards

It’s a special tribute for Pedro Almodóvar.

The 73-year-old Spanish Oscar-winning filmmaker will be feted at this year’s TIFF Tribute Awards.

Pedro AlmodovarAlmodóvar will receive the Jeff Skoll Award in Impact Media presented by Participant.

The fifth annual Tribute Awards ceremony presented by Bulgari will take place on Sunday, September 10 during the 48th edition of the fest at the Fairmont Royal York Hotel.

The TIFF Tribute Awards in its short run have already served as an awards-season bellwether, with past honorees including Michelle Yeoh, Brendan Fraser, Jessica Chastain, Roger Deakins, Sir Anthony Hopkins, Joaquin Phoenix, Taika Waititi, and Chloé Zhao, who all went on to receive Oscar wins.

“It’s a true thrill to acknowledge Pedro Almodóvar as the distinguished recipient of the Jeff Skoll Impact Media Award for 2023,” stated TIFF CEO Cameron Bailey. “Pedro has been coming to TIFF for years and each time is better than the time before. His artistic vision, bold storytelling, and unwavering commitment to pushing the boundaries of cinema have had a profound impact on cinema. He challenges societal norms, champions diversity, and illuminates the human experience with sensitivity and grace. We applaud his contributions to cinema and

The Jeff Skoll Award in Impact Media presented by Participant recognizes leadership in creating a union
between social impact and cinema. Past recipients honored in the category include Buffy Sainte-Marie in 2022, Alanis Obomsawin in 2021 and Mira Nair in 2020.

The Awards night serves as TIFF’s largest annual fundraiser, having raised $1.3 million in 2022.This year, the Tribute Awards gala will support the Viola Desmond Cinema campaign, which was launched through the Every Story Fund in 2022.

Almodóvar won a 2003 original screenplay Oscar for Habla Con Ellawhile his 2000 feature, All About My Motherwon an Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film. Lee won an Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay for BlacKkKlansman.

Sony Pictures Classics to Release Pedro Almodóvar’s “Strange Way of Life” Short Film in U.S. Theaters

Pedro Almodóvar’s latest short film will be hitting theaters in the United States this fall.

The 73-year-old Spanish Oscar-winning filmmaker’s Strange Way of Life, which had its world premiere at the Cannes Film Festival in the spring, will arrive in theaters in New York City and Los Angeles on October 4 thanks to Sony Pictures Classics.

Pedro AlmodovarThere will be an expansion nationwide on Oct. 6.

The short film, starring Ethan Hawke and Pedro Pascal, will play in theaters alongside Almodóvar’s 2020 short film, The Human Voicestarring Tilda Swinton, which was also distributed by Sony Pictures Classics. Together, the two shorts represent Almodóvar’s only English-language projects to date.

Strange Way of Life follows two gunmen who reunite after many years. In the film, a man rides a horse across the desert that separates him from Bitter Creek. He comes to visit Sheriff Jake. Twenty-five years earlier, both the sheriff and Silva, the rancher who rides out to meet him, worked together as hired gunmen. Silva visits him with the excuse of reuniting with his friend from his youth, and they do indeed celebrate their meeting, but the next morning Sheriff Jake tells him that the reason for his trip is not to go down the memory lane of their old friendship…

Pedro Pascal, Strange Way of LifeProduced by Almodóvar’s El Deseo and presented by Saint Laurent by Anthony VaccarelloStrange Way of Life, stars Pedro Casablanc, Manu Ríos, George Steane, José Condessa, Jason Fernández and Sara Sálamo. It is produced by Agustín Almodóvar, with Esther García as EP and Bárbara Peiró, Diego Pajuelo, and Saint Laurent by Anthony Vaccarello as associate producers.

The score is composed by four-time Oscar nominee Alberto Iglesias, a regular Almodóvar collaborator who received his most recent Oscar nomination in 2022 for Almodóvar’s Paralell Mothers. All characters are costumed by Saint Laurent by Anthony Vaccarello.

SPC has long-teamed with Almodóvar on a majority of his films, including most recently Parallel Mothers in 2021 and Pain and Glory in 2019. Sony Pictures Classics, which received two Oscar nominations each.

Pedro Pascal in Final Negotiations to Star in Paramount’s Untitled “Gladiator” Sequel

Pedro Pascal is ready to Rome

The 48-year-old Chilean actor is thisclose to joining the cast of the untitled Gladiator sequel for Paramount.

Pascal would join Paul Mescal, who will star as Lucius, as well as Barry Keoghan, Joseph Quinn, Connie Nielsen and Denzel Washington.

Ridley Scott is returning to direct.

Pascal’s role is unknown.

The new film follows the 2000 blockbuster Gladiator, which earned more than $460 million in worldwide box office and was nominated for 12 Oscars, winning five including Best Picture.

The role of Maximus, the Roman general-turned-gladiator, was a career-changer for Russell Crowe, not only delivering him the Best Actor Oscar but also launching him to the top of every leading-man list. Once it was made clear last year that the sequel would be Scott’s next movie, every male actor in town that fit the profile began chasing the part.

David Scarpa penned the script.

Also returning from the original film are John Mathieson (director of photography), Arthur Max (production designer) and Janty Yates (costume designer).

Paramount Pictures has dated the film for November 22, 2024.

The first film was co-production between Universal and DreamWorks, and while DreamWorks will not be involved in the sequel, Universal has the right to partner again when the project is packaged.

Pascal has been a major player following his scene-stealing role in his one season on Game of Thronesbut his star has blasted off following The Last of Uswhich has become one of the most popular shows in HBO’s history. While HBO is looking to get the show up and going next year, Pascal had been weighing a number of options to shoot before jumping back in to that and the opportunity on this film was too hard to pass up.

Besides The Last of Us, which will certainly have him in award season chatter this Emmy season, he also reprised his role on the Disney+ series The Mandalorianwhich just had its Season 3 finale last week.

Pascal can next be seen starring alongside Ethan Hawke in Pedro Almodovar’s short film Strange Way of Life, which will premiere at the Cannes Film Festival and will be distributed by Sony Pictures Classics this fall.

Additionally, Pascal is in Ethan Coen’s film Drive-Away Dolls, distributed by Focus Features and releasing in September. Pascal also stars in Anna Boden’s Freaky Tales, which is likely to come out later this year.

He also hosted Saturday Night Live earlier this year, earning rave reviews, and is also in contention for some Emmy love this awards season.

Sony Pictures Classics Acquires Worldwide Rights to Pedro Almodovar’s “Strange Way of Life,” Starring Pedro Pascal

Pedro Pascal’s strange way of life will be on full display globally…

Sony Pictures Classics has acquired the worldwide rights (outside of the UK, France, Belgium, Switzerland, Spain, Italy and Latin America) to Strange Way of Life, the buzzy short film starring the Chilean actor.

Pedro Pascal, Strange Way of LifeThe film, from Pedro Almodóvar, also stars Ethan Hawke.

The short will premiere as an official selection of the 2023 Cannes Film Festival.

The film, acquired at the pre-production phase, is slated for release this fall and will almost certainly be positioned for awards consideration, given the caliber of talent behind it.

Following two gunmen who reunite after 25 years, Strange Way of Life marks the latest in a long line of collaborations between Almodóvar and SPC, coming on the heels of the filmmaker’s first English-language project The Human Voice — a short also distributed by SPC, which starred Tilda Swinton.

Almodóvar describes the plot as follows: “A man rides a horse across the desert that separates him from Bitter Creek. He comes to visit Sheriff Jake. Twenty-five years earlier, both the sheriff and Silva, the rancher who rides out to meet him, worked together as hired gunmen. Silva visits him with the excuse of reuniting with his friend from his youth, and they do indeed celebrate their meeting, but the next morning Sheriff Jake tells him that the reason for his trip is not to go down the memory lane of their old friendship…”

Produced by Almodóvar’s El Deseo and presented by Saint Laurent by Anthony VaccarelloStrange Way of Life also stars Pedro Casablanc, Manu Ríos, George Steane, José Condessa, Jason Fernández and Sara Sálamo.

Agustín Almodóvar produced, with Esther García as executive producer, and Bárbara Peiró, Diego Pajuelo and Saint Laurent by Anthony Vaccarello as associate producers.

Four-time Oscar nom and regular Almodóvar collaborator Alberto Iglesias penned the score, with Saint Laurent by Anthony Vaccarello handling the costumes.

Pedro Almodóvar’s Short Film “Strange Way of Life” to World Premiere at Cannes Film Festival

Pedro Almodóvar’s latest project is headed to the Cannes Film Festival.

The 73-year-old Spanish Oscar-winning director’s short film Strange Way of Life will have its world premiere at the upcoming 76th edition of the festival, which will run from May 16-27.

Pedro AlmodovarThe Western shot in southern Spain stars Ethan Hawke and Pedro Pascal and is the filmmaker’s second English-language experience, after The Human Voice in 2020.

The film had been widely expected to play at Cannes after the director told singer-songwriter Dua Lipa that he expected it to premiere the festival in an interview for her At Your Service podcast in January.

Pedro Almodóvar, "Strange Way of Life"The screening of Almodóvar’s Strange Way of Life will be followed by a conversation with the director and the filmmaking team.

The work revolves around a reunion between a sheriff and a rancher who knew one another in a previous life.

The synopsis provided by Almodóvar and posted by the festival reads: “A man rides a horse across the desert that separates him from Bitter Creek. He comes to visit Sheriff Jake. Twenty-five years earlier, both the sheriff and Silva, the rancher who rides out to meet him, worked together as hired gunmen. Silva visits him with the excuse of reuniting with his friend from his youth, and they do indeed celebrate their meeting, but the next morning Sheriff Jake tells him that the reason for his trip is not to go down the memory lane of their old friendship.”

“I must say no more so as not to give away all the surprises of the script,” adds the director. “The strange way of life referred in the title alludes to the famous fado by Amalia Rodrigues, whose lyrics suggest that there is no stranger existence than the one that is lived by turning your back on your own desires.”

The film is produced by Agustín Almodóvar with Esther García as executive producer and Bárbara Peiró, Diego Pajuelo and Saint Laurent by Anthony Vaccarello as associate producers.

Further cast members alongside Hawke and Pascal include Pedro Casablanc, Manu Ríos, George Steane, José Condessa, Jason Fernández, Sara Sálamo, Ohiana Cueto and Daniela Medina.