The actors meet again thanks to FOTOGRAMAS to remember one of the most representative films of Julio Medem, with whom they worked together on three occasions.
In 1996, ‘Tierra’, Julio Medem’s third and most personal film, came to theaters after ‘Vacas’ and ‘The Red Squirrel’. The director chose Emma Suárez and Carmelo Gómez again, this time to tell the story of Ángel, a guy who comes to a peculiar area to fumigate and end the cochineal plague that produces a strange earthy flavor in the wine. His relationships with the local people, especially with women, will turn his mission into a dreamlike journey with unforeseeable consequences.
Nominated for the Palme d’Or for Best Film at the Cannes Film Festival, winner of two Silver Frames (Best Actor and Film Actress) and winner of two Goya Awards, ‘Tierra’, which in May celebrates its 25th anniversary , was a milestone not only in the filmography of the Basque director, but also in that of his two protagonists, who have met again to review the film on the occasion of our 75th Anniversary. The actors reflect on what it meant for them to be part of Medem’s incomparable universe and we were able to verify that the chemistry that united them in their films remains intact some time later.
The lightning that split Pepe Viyuela
“Just seeing this takes you to a strange, mysterious place. With that beautiful photograph of Javier Aguirresarobe ”, says Emma Suárez about one of the first sequences of‘ Tierra ’, in which Pepe Viyuela participated. And despite the years that have passed, Carmelo is still amazed by “how modern the film is still.” A complicated sequence, “because of the cold and rain that day” and, above all, because of having to work with animals. “There was casting of lambs and that one was not still … Until he realized that he was making a movie,” jokes Carmelo.
Ready, set … Let’s fumigate!
This is one of the scenes that best defines Julio Medem’s cinema. And we don’t just say it. Emma Suárez and Carmelo Gómez recognize that this sequence brings together all the ingredients that have made him an unmistakable filmmaker: the shots, the music, the color range … “All those characters, those cables, that bottle … Julio has a prodigious imagination” Emma says as she returns to see the mythical moment of the fumigation. And Carmelo takes the opportunity to tell us a curiosity that gives us an idea of the extent to which his productions are cared for: “Alberto Iglesias, composer of the soundtrack, came every day to see what was being shot”.
The great fight with Karra Elejalde … and Emma’s great crying woman
Emma remembers this day as one of the hardest of the shoot: “I spent it all crying because, between takes, I couldn’t disconnect”. Something for which I was already trained since “once when I was very young they put menthol in my eyes and I was almost blind. So I decided that it was better to learn to cry ”.
For Carmelo, the irruption on the scene of Karra Elejalde (Patricio) is not without a comic point: “In Julio’s cinema, even the poetic parts have a sense of humor. It’s all like a dream ”.
In the heat of the shower …
Like almost all erotic sequences, this one was also uncomfortable to shoot, especially because of the technical aspects. “I remember the heat, the steam, how my eyes stung, how bad that toxic smoke smelled …”, Emma tells us. “And the water was ice cold!”, Adds Carmelo. But the chemistry that the actors have always had on and off the screen made that scene one of the most beautiful and poetic in the film.
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