The 1996 Brazilian telenovela (soap opera) "Xica da Silva" is about the true story of a slave in 18th century colonial Brazil. Telenovelas are normally based on books and "Xica da Silva" is loosely based on the book, "Chica que Manda" by Agripa Vasconcelos.
Xica uses her wits to get out of trouble and help others. When she becomes the slave of powerful João Fernandes, they soon become lovers and a passionate, long-lasting love affair is formed. João gives Xica her freedom. He showers her with diamonds and other gifts. As a result, she is able to rise from slavery to a position of power. Because of her deeds, the real Xica became a legend in her own time, especially among the slaves.
"Xica da Silva," is a charismatic telenovela from the very first episode, when the viewer is introduced to the heroine, to the last very last scene. It is full of intrigue and comedy. One scene can be serious, while the next can be humorous. Each episode leaves the viewer wanting to return to see what will happen next. Unlike the 1976 movie with the same name, this telenovela not only covers the story of Xica and her influential lover, João, it also provides a rich storyline about other characters. Many of the personalities possess hidden secrets, which unfold through the course of the storyline.
Different themes run through this historical telenovela. The viewer sees how the culture of that era deals with the issue of slavery. Injustice and inhumanity are not only reserved for the slaves, but also for homosexuals, Jews, suspected witches, women and anyone who falls from power.
Originally aired in Portuguese, "Xica da Silva" has been often dubbed in various languages, depending on the country in which it shown. Written by Adamo Angel (Walcyr Carrasco), in collaboration with José de Carvalho and directed by Walter Avancini, this telenovela stars Taís Araújo, Victor Wagner, Zezé Motta (the actress who plays the original Xica in the movie version) and a stellar cast.
Find out how this cunning woman is able to defeat all her enemies' plans against her and meet the other interesting characters of the town.
"Xica da Silva" is a most enjoyable telenovela!
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