Full Cast Announced for Simon Bolivar Biopic Libertador
June 20, 2012
Golden Globe and Emmy nominated Venezuelan actor Edgar Ramírez (Carlos, Zero Dark Thirty), Spanish actress María Valverde (Melissa P.), Danny Huston (Magic City, X-Men Origins: Wolverine), Imanol Arias (El Lute) and Gary Lewis (Billy Elliot, Gangs of New York) will topline Libertador, a modern epic about the life of Simón Bolívar (1783 – 1830).
Bolívar was instrumental in Latin America’s struggle for independence from the Spanish Empire, and is today considered one of the most influential politicians and emancipators in American history.
Libertador is told from the viewpoint of Bolívar, portrayed by Ramírez, about his quests and epic military campaigns, which covered twice the territory Alexander the Great conquered, and his vision to unify South America.
Helmed by South American acclaimed director Alberto Arvelo (A House with a View of the Sea, Cyrano Fernández), and written by Timothy Sexton (Children of Men), Libertador is the biggest independent production out of South America to date. The film is produced by Winfried Hammacher and Ana Loehnert. Executive producers are Edgar Ramírez and Christer von Lindequist, who is also handling worldwide sales on the film.
“From the start, I knew I didn’t want to make a film just about history, so I tried to move away from the paintings in the museums and cinema for historians, and really concentrate on the man behind the stories and who he really was as a person,” said director Arvelo.
Commenting on the film, producer Winfried Hammacher said: “This sprawling epic spans the life and is told from Bolívar’s perspective. The universal theme, international cast and acclaimed production team will succeed in making 'Libertador' the South American 'Braveheart'.”
Producer Ana Loehnert also added, “Bolívar was a true visionary, whose intricate and fascinating life story and legacy had never been brought to screen in the way he deserved. We have tried to do this approaching it also from a very personal and contemporary angle.”
Producers have assembled a celebrated team including editor Tariq Anwar (The Kings Speech), director of photography - Xavi Giménez (Red Lights, Agora), production designer - Paul Austerberry (Twilight) and costume designer Sonia Grande (Midnight in Paris). In addition, LA Philharmonic Conductor and Venezuelan Native Gustavo Dudamel has come on board to compose the score for Libertador. This marks the first time the Grammy award winning Dudamel will score a film. Dudamel is the music director of the Los Angeles Philharmonic. He is also, aptly, the artistic director of the Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra.
Production recently moved from Venezuela to Spain for the second half of the 14 week shoot. Shot in 13 different locations between South America and Europe, Libertador has over 100 different sets and more than 10,000 extras working on the film. The production filmed in rarely seen Venezuelan locations such as Llanos de Acarigua, Parque Nacional de Canaima, and Caracas, in addition to the Spanish cities of Jerez, Barbate, Zahara, Carmona, Sierra Nevada, and Madrid. The Spanish-Venezuelan coproduction is being produced by San Mateo Films (Madrid), Producciones Insurgentes (Caracas), in association with WMG Films (Berlin) and Silver Screen Inc. (Los Angeles). The film is primarily shot in Spanish with English and French.