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Having addressed one of the best-known events in Panamanian history with the movie “Invasion”, Abner Benaim’s Apertura Films and Gema Juarez Allen’s Gema Films are re-teaming to produce a docu-feature about the well-known Panamanian artiste, Ruben Blades, entitled: “Ruben Blades Is Not My Name.”
Benaim, who is directing, turns his attention to the multiple Grammy Award-winning salsa singer/composer. “Ruben Blades Is Not My Name” is currently shooting in New York and will then segue to Panama and other Latin American countries.
“Invasion” took a questioning stance on the competence – plus humanity – of American armed intervention in foreign lands. “Ruben Blades Is Not My Name” turns on a multi-faceted figure who wrote and performed what was then the best-selling salsa album in history, the 1978’s “Siembra.” Blades was educated at Harvard, was and is a political activist, and made a run for Panamanian president in 1994, obtaining 20% of the votes. He has enjoyed a long career as an actor and is currently playing Daniel Salazar in “Fear the Walking Dead”
“The arc of the story is still playing itself out, but it will definitely be related to the history of Latin America in the past 50 years, of which Ruben has been a witness and payed an active part,” said Benaim.
“We will concentrate on his music and particularly his lyrics and their affect on those who have listened to them, danced to them, thought about them, and were somehow shaped by them.”
By way of its format, “Ruben Blades Is Not My Name” will include interviews with Ruben, other musicians and artists, friends and family and will use lots of incredible archive footage from concerts, daily life, politics, films and more,” Benaim said, adding that the docu-feature will also shoot Ruben Blades offstage as a man, “as someone who lives a private life also.”
“Ruben Blades Is Not My Name” is “a film full of rhythm, music and good stories -with the most remarkable characters.