Photo: "The Book of Life"
Mexican filmmaker Guillermo del Toro presented at Comic-Con “The Book of Life,” the first work by compatriot Jorge Gutierrez, who explores the roots of that Latin American country’s folklore to tell a story of love beyond death.
This is an animated movie arrayed in the traditional aesthetic of Mexico’s Day of the Dead, which dates back to pre-Columbian days.
“We wanted to make a film that is modern but that delves deeply into our roots and celebrates what the Day of the Dead stands for, which is life,” Del Toro told a forum of more than 150 journalists Friday at a hotel next to the San Diego Convention Center, epicenter of Comic-Con, a convention about comics and other art forms in the fantasy and science-fiction genres.
The director of Pan’s Labyrinth acted as producer of “The Book of Life” and as a mentor for Gutierrez, who directed the film with which he aspired “to create something different and unique, a story never seen before,” he said.
“We wanted to make some really authentic tacos that people would like not only in Mexico, but also in the rest of the world,” the director said, an ambition shared by Del Toro, who confessed to seeing himself reflected in Gutierrez.
“The Book of Life” tells the story of Manolo, a young man facing the dilemma of following his heart or living up to his family’s expectations - but before taking that decision, he finds himself whisked on a trip through strange fantastic worlds that force him to deal with his greatest fears.
The film is scheduled to premiere in the United States on Oct. 17, shortly before Halloween (Oct. 31) and the Day of the Dead (Nov. 2).
Channing Tatum, Ron Perlman and Christina Applegate dubbed the voices of some of the main characters for the English-language version and accompanied Del Toro and Gutierrez to Comic-Con on Friday.