Two cultures that are so different but so close, Cuban and Canadian, will soon be seen on the big screen. In the coming year, filmgoers will be able to enjoy Eating the Sun, a movie that
began to shot in the first quarter of 2014 in both countries, directed by the talented and well-known Cuban filmmaker Alfredo Ureta.
In an exclusive interview with Cubaplus, Ureta told us that Eating the Sun is a Cuban-Canadian coproduction by Aurora Films and Canwood Entertainment. It depicts an encounter between cultures, addressing the classic conflicts of a couple grappling with the fact that they were born and raised in very different settings combined with unusual events that place them in extreme situations.
They must leave an ideal world to make a life together, and are invaded by questions and inner ghosts. In a place without contact with the outside world, they must find themselves to emerge from crisis. The obstacles become confused and often we find ourselves asking if the events are really happening or if they are figments of a mind disoriented by the imaginings of a strange world.
In fact, this psychological thriller is based on ancient pre-Columbian mythology about the negative influence brought about by solar eclipses, even on our loved ones, Ureta said. “We are sure that those who see this film will wonder if they really know those who are closest to them,” he commented.
Everything is connected in this film, where suggestion plays a central role. “Using the legend, we come to the present, and address contemporary themes. For example, as the characters are on their way to Julia’s home in Cuba, they witness a solar eclipse. With the influence of ancestral legends, Julia is affected, and they go through contradictions and conflicts that are sometimes unexplainable for her,” Ureta noted.
Filming was done in Toronto, Canada, and in Havana, Girón, and Pinar del Río, in Cuba, “where we will compare, in a certain way, the intense Canadian cold with the island’s eternal summer,” he said.
Ureta noted enthusiastically that one special feature of this work is that it is the first Cuban film to be shot in English, “a real challenge for us.” The two production companies are planning work for the longer term. “The
idea is to establish Cuba as a very attractive set, with good human capital, and to bring in the Canadian experience, work flows, installed technological capacity and good actors, some of whom can insert us into the major markets just with their presence in the film.”
Ureta said proudly: “We have a young but very talented cast, hardworking and energetic, including Cuban actress Yoandra Suárez, and with Inti Herrera and Reymel Delgado as executive producers.”
Gordon Weiske, president of Canwood Entertaiment, the film’s Canadian producer, said that the film’s theme and script caught his attention and interest, because it connects the two countries very well. Hence his interest and decision to work on it.
Weiske added that he had worked with Ureta previously and with part of the film crew on other audiovisual projects, including the ones produced during the performances by the celebrated Italian singer Zucchero in Cuba, in December of 2012. Asked for an opinion about Cuban film, Weiske said, “Cuba has some great artistic talent. So if we have a good story, accompanied by good talent and good technology, the final product is sure to be a good film.” Therefore, he added, this is the first of many other projects to come, to our satisfaction, and of course, to that of movie-goers.