Fernando Solanas




Fernando Ezequiel 'Pino' Solanas (b. 16 February 1936, Olivos, Buenos Aires, Argentina) is an Argentine film director, screenwriter and politician. His films include El Viaje (1992), Tangos... El Exilio de Gardel (1985) and Sur (1988).

Solanas studied theatre, music and law. In 1962, he directed his first short feature Seguir andando and in 1968 he covertly produced and directed his first long feature film La Hora de los Hornos, a documentary on neo-colonialism and violence in Latin America. The film won several international awards and was screened around the world. Solanas has won the Special Jury Award and the Critics Award at the Venice Film Festival and the Best Director Palme at the Cannes Film Festival. He was awarded a special Golden Bear at the 2004 Berlin Film Festival. He collaborated with the great tango composer and musician Ástor Piazzolla on the soundtracks for various movies.

Solanas was at the forefront of the "Grupo Cine Liberación" that revolutionised Argentine cinema in the 1970s, developing its social conscience and political voice. He was active in the campaign to support Perón. Threatened by right-wing forces in the 1970s, one of his actors was assassinated and he himself was almost kidnapped.

Together with Octavio Getino Solanas wrote the manifesto "Toward a Third Cinema". The Idea of a political Third Cinema, opposed to Hollywood Cinema and European Auteur cinema, inspired film makers in many so called developing countries.

Solanas went into exile in Paris in 1976, returning to Argentina with the arrival of democracy in 1983.

He continued to make political films and was an outspoken critic of Carlos Menem, the Argentine President. Three days after such a public criticism, on 21 May 1991, Solanas was the victim of a violent attack, shot with two bullets. Despite dealing with the attack and disability, Solanas became even more involved in politics and stood to be a Senator for Buenos Aires, receiving 7% of the vote in 1992. A year later he was elected a National Deputy for the Frente Grande list, although he left the party after a year.

Solanas continues to write and direct, including the 2005 film La Dignidad de los Nadies. His son, Juan Solanas, is also a noted film director.

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