João Botelho film based on the work of José Saramago in premiere at Teatro Nacional São João

Adaptation of “O Ano da Morte de Ricardo Reis” by filmmaker João Botelho will debut in September at the Teatro Nacional de São João, in Porto.

After “Filme do Desassossego“, “Os Maias” and “Peregrinação“, João Botelho presents at São João, in world premiere, O Ano da Morte de Ricardo Reis”, his adaptation of the homonymous novel by José Saramago.

Intertwining the threads of fiction and history, the writer conceived a private encounter, that of the deceased Fernando Pessoa, the creator, with one of his creations, the heteronymous Ricardo Reis, who returned to the country after 16 years of exile in Brazil.

1936 is the year of all dangers, of Mussolini’s fascism, of Hitler’s Nazism, of the terrible Spanish civil war and of Salazar’s New State. Pessoa and Reis are two lucid observers of the agony of time, so similar to what we live in. Two women, Lídia and Marcenda, intrude into this relationship, Ricardo Reis’ carnal and impossible passions.

“I’m not a ghost,” shouts Pessoa to Reis. The text is real and concrete, material worked by João Botelho in this other (un)finished conversation, continuing the recent practice of film transposition of great works of Portuguese literature. “Life and Death are all one”: to this fantastic realism, literature and cinema have privileged access.

João Botelho’s film is with Chico Diaz, Luís Lima Barreto, Catarina Wallenstein, Victoria Guerra, João Barbosa, Rui Morrison, Hugo Mestre Amaro, Gustavo Vargas, Dinis Gomes, Rafael Fonseca, Cláudio da Silva, Francisco Vistas, Hugo Silva, Luís Lucas, José Martins, André Gomes, Miguel Monteiro, Márcia Breia, Luísa Cruz, Marcello Urgeghe, Solange Santos, Francisco Tavares, Paulo Filipe Monteiro, Ricardo Aibéo, Dinarte Branco, Pedro Lacerda, Mário Sabino Sousa, Alexandra Rosa, Carolina Serrão and Bruno Ferreira, with the production of Ar de Filmes.

“O Ano da Morte de Ricardo Reis” will premiere on September 20 at 9 pm at the Teatro Nacional São João.

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