Our first post goes to one of our all-time favorite movies that played an important role on the inspiration of our first short film ‘Mañana’. We’re talking about Cidade de Deus (City of God), a 2002 Brazilian crime drama film directed by Fernando Meirelles and co-directed by Kátia Lund, released in its home country in 2002 and worldwide in 2003. The story was adapted by Bráulio Mantovani from the 1997 novel of the same namewritten by Paulo Lins, but the characters are not fictitious and the plot is based upon real events. It depicts the growth of organized crime in the Cidade de Deus suburb of Rio de Janeiro, between the end of the ’60s and the beginning of the ’80s, with the closure of the film depicting the war between the drug dealer Li’l Zé and criminal Knockout Ned. The film received four Academy Award nominations in 2004: Best Cinematography (César Charlone), Best Directing (Meirelles), Best Editing (Daniel Rezende) and Best Writing (Adapted Screenplay)(Mantovani).

The inspiration to the creative writing of ‘Mañana’ came after watching the boys playing soccer on those dusty and unattended fields of the City of God. One frame on that sequence led to the story of Ramón and his dream of one day becoming a great soccer player like his dad. Check out the trailer: https://vimeo.com/9739403

The actors used in Cidade de Deus were all non-actors, real youths who actually grew up in the City of God. They all could have second careers if they wanted them, because all the principles turned in standout performances. It was the same situation in our short film, where we worked with natural actors except Alberto Borja, Ramón’s grandfather, who is a professional and trained actor in theater. Andres Castelar, the boy who plays Ramón in ‘Mañana’ had never acted in his life before. In fact, he had never been to a movie theater before. The first time he went to see a movie, was to watch himself on the big screen when ‘Mañana’ played in the Cartagena Film Festival in 2010.

Cidade de Deus is simply an outstanding movie; from the screenplay, the characters, the casting, the editing, the music score, and specially, the cinematography which was the main reference for our visual choice in ‘Mañana’, shot in 16mm.

Cidade de Deus is a ‘must-see’ movie if you haven’t. 

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