In the 48th edition of the FToronto International Film Festival (TIFF), which concludes on Sunday, the writer Guillermo Arriaga, winner of the Alfaguara Prize in 2020 with “Salvar el fuego”, he has presented “A sky open”, a script that he wrote at the end of the 20th century and that his two sons have directed, Mariana and Santiago Arriaga.
The film recorded some of its scenes at the Palo Blanco Dam and the road to the Hipólito ejido, as well as in places in Ramos Arizpe, General Cepeda and Piedras Negras, whose landscapes are now part of the journey it portrays.
The story of the script of “A sky open” is in a way a constant in the life of the screenwriter. He wrote it at the end of the 20th century, after suffering a car accident. Although the rights to the writing were acquired to make the film, the discrepancies between the producer and Arriaga caused the project to not go ahead.
“A sky open” by Mariana and Santiago Arriaga, and “Memory” by Michel Franco are the representation of Mexican cinema.
They are part of the official selection of the 80th Venice International Film Festival pic.twitter.com/LBDWQDRvNN
— Alejandra Frausto (@alefrausto)
July 26, 2023
”I wanted to direct it. She had the contract. But for some reason, the company that bought him began to bring in other directors with a completely different taste than mine, with a vision of the world that was not correct,” explains Arriaga in an interview with Efe.
”Those people didn’t trust me as a director. I think they made a mistake by not trusting, honestly,” he adds.
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Years later he would write the scripts for the trilogy “Amores Perros” (2000), “21 Grams” (2004) and “Babel” (2006), which were made by the Mexican Alejandro González Iñárruti although Arriaga has declared that he wanted to direct them.
The relationship between the two exploded. Arriaga has stated that the agreement was for both of them to appear as directors in the three films, which never happened and caused the end of their friendship.
The Arriagas feel very privileged to do “A sky open” with @KSFilms1 and his wonderful team of producers. They have world quality and exceptional rigor. We couldn’t find better producers.
— Guillermo Arriaga (@G_Arriaga)
July 25, 2023
Finally, Arriaga also did not direct “A sky open,” a story that takes place in the Coahuila desert, in northern Mexico, where three young people go in search of the person responsible for the death of the father of two of them.
lThe film has become the debut feature of the writer’s offspring. His son, Santiago, found it in a box, read it, fell in love with the story, recovered the rights and proposed to his father to direct it together with his sister Mariana.
”I always wanted to write something that they directed. I preferred to trust them. Of course, I wanted to direct it in a way you can’t imagine. And when I was on set I had to contain myself. I was far away. I wasn’t going to bother them,” she explains.
With information from EFE.