Double Palme d’Or winner Emir Kusturica will start shooting his biopic of Mexican revolutionary figure Pancho Villa on February 15 2011.
The film, which will star Johnny Depp and Salma Hayek, will now be called Wild Roses,Tender Roses and will shoot in Spanish. It is being developed and produced through French production company Fidelite.
It will shoot in Spain and at Kusturica’s studio Kustendorf, the village he built in Serbia. The No Smoking Orchestra, which Kusturica is a member of, will provide the music for the film, which is billed as an epic in the style of Sergio Leone’s spaghetti westerns and Sam Peckinpah’s The Wild Bunch.
“This is going to be my biggest movie. I will be doing it without compromise,” Kusturica said.
Before the Pancho Villa project begins, Kusturica will be heading to Israel this summer to start work on another feature, Cool Water. The film, about a male stripper who returns to his native Middle East for his father’s funeral, is being produced by Germany’s Brave New Work and Fidelité. Kusturica is hoping to bring Depp on board as a co-producer. Wild Bunch will handle world sales and Wild Bunch Germany is to handle the German distribution.
The project has already received development support from the German Federal Film Board and the producers are also looking for support from Eurimages. Gabriel Bornstein is the screenwriter.
Depp was in Serbia last week for the third Kustendorf Film Festival, where he received The Award For Future Movies and had a full-length statue unveiled in his honour.
Kusturica and Depp first worked together in Arizona Dream in 1993.