4 items from 2013
Madrid - Acclaimed Spanish director, Josep Joan Bigas Luna, who discovered Javier Bardem and Penelope Cruz and cast them opposite each other 20 years ago in Jamon, Jamon died over the weekend at age 67. Bigas Luna, who died of cancer, was recognized as having an unfailing eye for discovering fresh talent. He cast Bardem in 1990 in The Ages of Lulu, giving the future Oscar-winning actor his first break. "I don't know where to begin," Bardem said, adding that he owes Bigas Luna "the woman I love," and "a career that I never dreamed I could have.
- Pamela Rolfe
Spanish film director whose 'Iberian passion' trilogy began with Jamon Jamon
For 39 years, under General Francisco Franco's repressive regime, it was almost impossible for Spain to create a vibrant film industry and for talented film-makers to express themselves freely. However, after the death of the Generalissimo in 1975, there was a burst of creativity, with Pedro Almodóvar paving the way for directors such as Bigas Luna, who has died of cancer aged 67.
After some years as a conceptual artist who experimented with new audio-visual media, Luna became known internationally for his "Iberian passion" feature film trilogy: Jamon Jamon (1992), Golden Balls (1993) and The Tit and the Moon (1994), which explored the darkest depths of eroticism and stereotypical Spanish machismo. The first film introduced Penélope Cruz to audiences and launched Javier Bardem as the embodiment of the Spanish stud. "I owe my career to Bigas Luna," Bardem said in 2001.
In the trilogy, Luna, »
- Ronald Bergan
Madrid — Spaniard Josep Joan Bigas Luna was lauded as a brilliant and "truly special" filmmaker a day after his death, with some of the highest praise coming from actors Javier Bardem and Penelope Cruz, two stars whose film careers he launched.
Bigas Luna, 67, died Saturday in northeast Spain after a long battle with cancer.
The filmmaker was regarded as having had an excellent eye for spotting talent and a knack for stimulating on-screen chemistry between actors. His 1992 film "Jamon, Jamon" received unanimous praise as "a classic" in the Spanish press on Sunday,
The director discovered Cruz and Bardem, who married in 2010, as well as a giving early boosts to a host of other now well-known film muses, including Leonor Watling, Angela Molina, Francesca Neri and Valeria Marini.
Many of the roles in his films were explosively steamy, even erotic. Yet they often explored with great insight aspects of modern Spain's quirkiness. »
It was typical of Bigas Luna, a larger-than-life bon vivant who soon became a one-man-brand, that when Spain followed up the 1975 death of dictator Francisco Franco with a splurge of tits-and-bums quickies, Bigas Luna’s second feature, 1978’s “Bilbao,” rolled off the new sexual liberties to portray a hen-pecked husband who kidnaps a prostitute to slake his sexual frustrations, hanging her from his ceiling like a religious martyr.
“Bilbao” initiated Bigas Luna’s long-term exploration of sexual and emotional inadequacy, set in the context of social repression. This inspired the 1990’s sexual awakening drama “The Ages of Lulu,” whose S & M orgy was cut by the British Board of Film Classification.
These obsessions also lends weight, however, to Bigas Luna’s finest film achievement, »
- John Hopewell
4 items from 2013
IMDb.com, Inc. takes no responsibility for the content or accuracy of the above news articles, Tweets, or blog posts. This content is published for the entertainment of our users only. The news articles, Tweets, and blog posts do not represent IMDb's opinions nor can we guarantee that the reporting therein is completely factual. Please visit the source responsible for the item in question to report any concerns you may have regarding content or accuracy.See our NewsDesk partners