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Pineda Barnet filming again
The Cuban director Enrique Pineda Barnet, who has not filmed in Cuba since his successful 'La Bella del Alambra' (Goya Prize, 1990), is once again on the set shooting the film 'Te espero en la eternidad' (Waiting for You in Eternity).

He is returning with the authority of a maestro. As he has said in various interviews, the full length feature 'Te espero en la eternidad' approaches "the most dramatic phenomenon suffered by Cuban families, that of separation," and he is making it without the fear of repeating himself by dealing with a theme that he has taken to the screen on a number of occasions.

According to the advance synopsis, the story takes place in Havana in 2006: "Amalia, an elderly spiritualist, has just been widowed. She lives in the smallest apartment on the top floor of the oldest building of the historically oldest corner of El Vedado district, with Cristóbal, her 10-year-old grandson, and her youngest son, Mayito. Amalia calls together the divided family to read them the Last Will and Testament of her recently deceased husband Octavio. Their children: Ricardo, a revolutionary engineer, who works and lives in a humble and isolated little town in the provinces. Margarita, an architect, lives in the United States, where she has a family. And Mayito, bohemian, musician and poet. All of them live in separate worlds. The family reunion serves to settle scores in their lives. On this occasion Amalia, a faithful believer, adulterates the paternal legacy as a unifying element. But, on raising up the spirit of her dead husband, he speaks through the medium of his grandson, reveals the existence of the legitimate document, and it is the child who discovers its truth."

The director and script writer approaches the story as he almost always does in his films, between fiction and documentary. The fiction, a small apartment where the family nucleus comes together, and the documentary, 23rd Street in Vedado. Pineda Barnet warns that "it is a film with many symbols that viewers will have to evaluate and decipher."

In relation to the cast, he has selected notable and well-known actors joined by other young ones. Verónica Lyn, who played Rachels mother in La Bella del Alambra; Héctor Noas, now a dedicated actor and a student of Pineda himself; Broselianda Hernández, an exceptional actress who shows malleability, sensibility, intelligence and tremendous grace; another of his students, Ismael de Diego; and the seven-year-old Robertico Díaz.

On the other hand, the film crew of 'Te espero en la eternidad' is high-quality: photography, Pablo Massip and Raúl Rodríguez; sound, Abel Calderón; artistic direction, Nieves Laferté; and musical direction, Zenaida Romeu.

In recognition of his fertile and long career, Pineda Barnet was awarded the 2006 National Film Prize. Cuban cinema has been enriched with documentaries like Aire frío (Cold Wind) and Giselle (1963), David (1967), Mella (1975) and Aquella larga noche (That Long Night, 1979), plus the film Tiempo de amar (Time to Love, 1981).

Interviewed on his return to directing feature films, Pineda Barnet spoke of many projects in the pipeline, including "Verde, verde (Green, Green), which is a very necessary and important attack on homophobia for Cuba and the whole world because nobody believes the business about new and more tolerant legislation, just as nobody believes that there is no racial discrimination, or discrimination against women; these are elements that still exist in societies. There are still ferocities, we are still engaging in witch hunts, still burning thoughts and ideas." And Bolero rosa (Rose Bolero), "that film I have dreamed so much of and am going to make some day, that will be my final coup," which he wants to film with Beatriz Valdés.

He also mentioned scripts that he has already written for documentaries: Vodkafé, "on Russian-Cuban love affairs above and beyond politics, tendencies and wars; peoples love, so important for me," and as something exceptional, the maestro has 55 hours of video of the staging of Charenton, the Marat Sade version, by Peter Weiss, by Teatro Buendía, directed by Flora Lauten. In that respect, he has explained: "I have the whole process from the conception of the idea to the performance of the work, I just have to mount it."

Enrique Barnet, a maestro of Cuban cinema, is back filming in Cuba after 17 years. A special moment, without any doubt.

Source: Granma Internacional

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