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The film Dr. José Gregorio Hernández, the story of a miracle, by Venezuelan filmmaker Jorge Zambrano aspires to be released in December 2024

The movie Dr. José Gregorio Hernández, the story of a miracle, the debut film by Venezuelan filmmaker Jorge Zambrano, aims to be released in December of this year, after a long work that began in 2020 and is still in production. “It took me about a year to write the script and in 2021 production began.” The film is completely independent, financed mostly by himself and some executive producers who have collaborated, but he is looking for sponsors for a part.

One of the main challenges it encountered, and why it has taken so long to complete, has been economic. “Getting the funding for the film has been particularly challenging,” but in the last year it has managed to move faster.

Another challenge, said Zambrano, was the historical documentation about the life of José Gregorio Hernández “and how to summarize, in such a short time, so much information, because his life is quite extensive and the film does not pretend to be documentary. The film is a fictional drama even though it is based on the doctor’s real life and everything that is reflected is attached to what his biographers say.

Its director assures that it is more complicated because it has to be a combination of “emotional and plot that is entertaining for people. So you have to make certain interpretations to be able to make a plot. For example, he was a very prominent doctor and, suddenly, at one point in his life, he decided to abandon everything and go into a monastery and become a monk. So as a filmmaker, you have to not only say that that happened but explain to the audience and give the audience tools to understand what motivated José Gregorio to make that decision, so that they can understand what his life was like,” but this version The interpretation that Zambrano makes is linked to that of the historical facts that he does not modify, but that perhaps are not as entertaining.

He stated that they want to reach movie theaters, “we have already talked informally about putting it in movie theaters in Venezuela, Spain, the United States and Chile” which would initially be the countries that would see the film in theaters. Then as a second window I would reach streaming, but commented that since it is a small production, large platforms are not advantageous. There are other platforms that have contacted its creator to have this title and local television in Venezuela has also shown interest. Regarding international distribution, there is still nothing specific, Zambrano clarified. “Several distributors have approached me,” but they are still in talks.

TYPE OF ANIMATION

The animation is based on a successful branch of Japanese animation. “They have great care and affection for their culture and have reflected it in their animated productions. That’s something that I really like, that watching a Japanese animated film from Studio Ghibli or any other major Japanese studio, they reflect the way people dress, how people live in the city, people in the countryside. , how they cook, what they eat. All of these things in these animated films are details carefully placed there and are practically 100% close to what Japanese reality is. The other thing they do is that they reflect it in different historical moments of their lives, from the present to before the war.”

For him, this is extremely interesting because when you see those materials that reflect Japanese culture and its traditions, “I thought: we have so much, our Venezuelan and Latin culture has so much, it has so many beautiful things that, suddenly, after seeing it so much, We stop seeing it and we need to see ourselves reflected in our films, in our things. So my film seeks that a bit. Taking advantage of the fact that the story of José Gregorio Hernández is a story from the 19th and 20th centuries, which is a very beautiful Venezuelan era, we can reflect the culture as it is”, capture every detail even in a breakfast from the Andean region. “These types of things that are part of our culture are very beautiful, very beautiful and I want to reflect that there and I also want to reflect it in the present with the character of the doctor, how those traditions were transformed because the dynamics of life “Modern is different, but it remains the same and remains the same as in the case that she makes an arepa.”

Zambrano has realized that for all Latin Americans the reason for food is the same. The family unit is the same. “It’s incredible how similar we are in those aspects. And then I want to show the rest of the people that they are not Venezuelan like us and so that they can identify. That is perhaps what gives the international value to this type of material, which becomes very interesting because we live in a time where everything has become so generalized that the specificity of each person has been lost, and when these materials appear, which are very specific, they become very interesting because they are different.”

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