The unspeakable truth of Antonio Banderas


Banderas talked about his heart attack in a 2020 NPR interview promoting his latest Almodovar film, “Pain and Glory”.

“I had a heart attack about two and a half years ago and was on high alert in my life,” he explained. “And when I say that people might just think I’m crazy, but it’s one of the best things that ever happened to me in my life because it just gave me a perspective of who I was. . “

Of course, that also got him to play the role of Salvador Mallo, a thinly veiled portrayal of Almodovar in “Pain and Glory” à la Fellini’s Guido Anselmi in the Oscar-winning film “8 ½ “ (ironically, or maybe not, Banderas played Anselmi in a recent Broadway production of “9”, the musical based on “8 ½”).

In “Pain and Glory,” Mallo deals with aging and ill health in an industry known to push its players to physical and mental extremes. Banderas’ heart attack may have led him to the role, for which he received an Oscar nod.

“Pedro told me, you know, I don’t know how to describe it, but since you have the heart attack, there’s something different about you,” Banderas revealed to NPR, adding that the director told him : “It’s going to be very close to all these pains that I describe in the film.”

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