Part horror show, part social satire, the epic-looking Spanish language film "Juan of the Dead" now has a full-lenth trailer for everyone to see. The Blaze first reported on the "zombie revolution" back in September.
As zombies prowl Havana's crumbling infrastructure, the film asserts that as one revolution ends "a new revolution is about to break out."
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“We Cubans have had to deal with a whole series of problems in the last 50 years,” said 34-year-old writer-director Alejandro Brugues just before filming in post-revolutionary Cuba. “We have become accustomed to resolving problems on our own and finding a way to survive. So I was thinking, ‘How would a Cuban survive a zombie epidemic.'"
The movie’s plot is simple: A 40-year-old layabout named Juan finds a zombie floating in the water while fishing off the coast of Havana. The zombie attacks but Juan makes a narrow escape, only to find that the undead are all over the city. State-run media blames the whole thing on government opponents backed by Cuba’s archenemies in Washington, but Juan knows better — and comes up with a plan.
Together with his sidekick, Lazaro — described by the filmmakers as “just as lazy, but twice as stupid” — Juan puts out the word that he is open for business...the business of killing zombies that is.
The movie is backed by Spain’s La Zanfona Producciones, two Spanish television channels, the government of Spain’s Andalucia region and the state-run Cuban Institute of Art and Cinematography. It has a budget of $2.1 million, most of which is going to special effects that have to be added in Spain because the technology is not available in Cuba.
“Clearly, it is a very small budget for an international zombie movie,” said Claudia Calvino, the film’s 27-year-old Cuban co-producer. “But that’s a lot of money for a Cuban movie.”
Another co-producer, 34-year-old Inti Herrera, said most Cuban films are made for less than $300,000. He said that the makers of Juan of the Dead are hoping to produce something that has a professional feel to it which can be enjoyed by audiences everywhere — even the United States.
“We really hope it comes out and is shown widely in theaters there,” said Brugues. “That is definitely our idea.”
Brugues says part of the movie’s message deals with whether one should stay and face problems or get out of town when the going gets tough — a politically sensitive topic in a country divided between those who have lived through the revolution for better or worse, and those who have left for exile in South Florida and elsewhere.
But he insists the film is not political.
“I want people to have a good time at the theater,” Brugues says. “And I promise liters and liters of blood.”
The Associated Press contributed to this article.