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Alejandro Amenábar Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (2)  | Mini Bio (2)  | Spouse (1)  | Trivia (9)  | Personal Quotes (6)

Overview (2)

Born in Santiago de Chile, Chile
Birth NameAlejandro Fernando Amenábar Cantos

Mini Bio (2)

Is the son of a Spanish mother and a Chilean father. His family moved back to Spain when he was 1 year old, and he grew up and studied in Madrid. He wrote, produced and directed his first short film La cabeza at the age of 19, and he was 23 when he directed his feature debut Tesis (1996). His film Open Your Eyes (1997) was a huge success in Spain and was distributed worldwide. It was remade in Hollywood by Cameron Crowe as Vanilla Sky (2001), starring Tom Cruise, Penelope Cruz (also the star of the original version) and Cameron Diaz. The Others (2001) is Amenábar's first English language film.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: alberto.farina@iol.it

Amenábar was born in Santiago Chile, on the eve of Pinochet's 1973 coup-de-état, such that his mother, who had already gone through the Spanish Civil War, uprooted the whole family and fled back to Spain. He grew up in Madrid and entered the Sciences Information Faculty at Madrid's Complutense University, where he was not exactly a brilliant pupil, and after numerous scholastic failures he decided to give up studying cinema -- which was not what he wanted -- and started to make cinema -- which definitely was. Since his perhaps best-known early short-film "Himenóptero" in 1992, in which he directed, produced, acted and wrote the script and the music, Amenábar progressed and reached his first commercial success in 1996 with "Thesis", a film which undoubtedly showed that a major new director had arrived on the scene. Later "Abre Los Ojos" and "Los Otros" (The Others) confirmed his arrival in the cinematographic world. In all his films he also writes the script and the music, as well as composing the music for other films, most notably "La Lengua de las Mariposas" (1999). He differs from most other Spanish directors inasmuch that he does not ingratiate himself on pet themes such as national foibles or recent past history, but ventures out into other spheres and has no fears about embarking into the phantasmagorical, psychological or even quasi-surrealist. Not yet thirty, this young man holds great promise for the next few years.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Keith F. Hatcher <khatcher@terra.es>

Spouse (1)

David Blanco (18 July 2015 - present)

Trivia (9)

His favorite directors are Steven Spielberg, James Cameron and Stanley Kubrick.
Open Your Eyes (1997) is his "remake" of Vertigo (1958), by Hitchcock. In fact, when the character of Sofia appears after hitting Cesar with a jar, it's the same shot of Kim Novak in Vertigo when she appears from the bathroom in the hotel - with green lights
He's a great collector of soundtracks.
He didn't finish his university studies due to one 4th grade subject, "Film writing". The last name of the professor who kept failing him is Castro, and that also the last name of the evil professor in his first long movie, Tesis (1996). Amenábar claims he used the last name inadvertedly at first, it was the university people who noticed the coincidence and asked him to change it. In the end he decided not to, although in the scripts he did write a different name, Gálvez. Incidentally, he has done the script writing in all of his movies so far.
His name appears in Tesis (1996), on a computer screen. When the main character checks the names of the buyers of the cameras, Amenábar is one of them.
Invited to join AMPAS in 2005.
Following his film The Sea Inside (2004), he received a congratulation letter from Steven Spielberg, one of Amenabar's favorite directors.
Composes the music for all his movies. Is a self-taught composer who learned to write music using a computer software.
Was friends in college with actor Mariano Alameda.

Personal Quotes (6)

My movies are not movies of answers but of questions.
In Hollywood you always feel a bit like a hake. The publicists march people up and down in front of you and they interview you ... You feel like the turbot and the sea-bream go by, and you're the hake.
I don't consider myself a dark person. I just like to play with dark characters.
[on Open Your Eyes (1997)] I started developing the idea in the middle of a fever. I had a cold and spent a few days in bed and it was there that I started developing the idea.
[on Vanilla Sky (2001)] I felt very honored and very excited. It's been weird because watching the same story done with a completely different tone, it was so weird. I remember when I saw the film for the first time, I kept thinking, "Well, I would have done this differently." But then I realized, "Well, of course, I've already done it!" So that's the point that's interesting to me. He [Cameron Crowe] really made his film. It's like the same song with two different voices. That's what I appreciate about it. Plus the buttload of money.
I don't dream too much, or I don't remember what it is I dream. But I guess that the world of perception, and the world of perspective, and the world of desire, interests me. And that has to do with dreams. And actually, going to the movies is like dreaming, isn't it?

See also

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