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The University of Southampton
FilmPart of Humanities

Postgraduate screenings: And Starring Pancho Villa as Himself Event

Film reel
16 February 2011
Seminar Room 1095, Avenue Campus

For more information regarding this event, please email Victoria Kearley at .

Event details

(Bruce Beresford, USA, 2003) Introduced by Victoria Kearley

The HBO television feature film And Starring Pancho Villa as Himself, produced by US cable network HBO in 2003, features Hollywood’s biggest Hispanic star Antonio Banderas as the eponymous revolutionary. Its narrative is loosely based on a true story of Villa’s collaboration with Hollywood when in 1914 he invited producer D W Griffith to film his battles in exchange for the financing of guns and ammunition to further the Mexican revolutionary war. Told from the perspective of Griffith’s nephew Frank Thayer, who has been sent to supervise the production of the film within And Starring Pancho Villa as Himself, the film portrays Villa as a ruthless yet charismatic leader who cultivates the image of himself as the macho champion of the Mexican revolutionary cause, and we through the eyes of the young producer become captivated by him. The screening’s introduction will discuss the film as both a star vehicle and a biopic, drawing attention to the way in which the film capitalises on Antonio Banderas’ existing persona as a Hispanic action hero in its presentation of Villa and its self-reflexive commentary on the biographical film through its depiction of the production of its film within a film, The Life of General Villa.

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