Hollywood seems to be resuming production as best it could. Prior to the pandemic putting everything on hold, actress Penélope Cruz and actor Antonio Banderas were both filming a comedy titled, “Official Competition.” This film is considered to be one of “the year’s highest-profile international Spanish productions,” according to Variety.
This comedy was one of the many films that had its production go on hiatus. Only eight days after production began on “Official Competition,” it had to stop due to COVID-19. Thankfully, filming in Spain just resumed this week for the upcoming movie, according to Deadline.
The cast is reportedly full of Spanish stars, including Argentine actor Oscar Martínez, Irene Escolar, Pilar Castro, Carlos Hipólito, and José Luis Gómez to name a few, according to IMDb. The plot of the film is centered around Cruz who plays a filmmaker who is recruited by a billionaire entrepreneur to impulsively make a movie, according to Variety.
According to Variety, during the time that production came to a halt, the filmmakers continued working, tweaking the script based on what had already been filmed.
“Within all the negatives of interrupting a shoot, there was something positive: We had an unusually large amount of time to study the already-shot material, and to put under a microscope the screenplay for what is left to film,” Gastón Duprat, one of the film’s directors said in a press release.
“The material we already have is wonderful: Penélope, Antonio, and Oscar are extraordinary. The scenes have what we wanted, an uncomfortable mix of tension and sarcasm in an aesthetic framework of great conceptual strength. We restarted filming with the certainty that we have something really powerful on our hands,” Duprat added.
During the COVID-19 outbreak, while the cast of “Unofficial Competition,” was on a break from production, Banderas took to social media to reveal his COVID-19 diagnosis. He broke the news to fans on his 60th birthday in early August and then a few weeks later he thankfully revealed that he made a full recovery from the virus.
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Un saludo a todos. Quiero hacer público que hoy, 10 de Agosto, me veo obligado a celebrar mi 60 cumpleaños siguiendo cuarentena al haber dado positivo de la enfermedad COVID-19, causada por el coronavirus. Me gustaría añadir que me encuentro relativamente bien, solo un poco más cansado de lo habitual y confiado en recuperarme lo antes posible siguiendo las indicaciones médicas que espero me permitan superar el proceso infeccioso que sufro y que a tantas personas está afectando alrededor del planeta. Aprovecharé este aislamiento para leer, escribir, descansar y seguir haciendo planes para comenzar a darle significado a mis recién estrenados 60 años a los cuales llego cargado de ganas y de ilusión. Un fuerte abrazo a todos. Antonio Banderas.
Banderas was part of the list of celebrities who also tested positive for COVID-19 and recovered, including Tom Hanks, Rita Wilson and Idris Elba. Banderas said he used his time in isolation to “read, write, rest.”
We’re excited to see the final production of “Unofficial Competition,” when it hits theaters hopefully next year.