The Hollywood Brazilian Film Festival’s opening gala took place at the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures with the premiere of the film “Mars One” directed, written and produced by Gabriel Martins. “Mars One” was acquired by Mark Cuban and Todd Wagner’s Magnolia Pictures ahead of the Sundance Film Festival. This film was also produced by Thiago Macedo Correia of Filmes de Plastico for $250 000.
This heartfelt film follows the Martins family, a lower middle class black family who are optimistic dreamers despite their lower socio-economic background. This independent film follows a family’s hopes and dreams set against a Brazil marred by poverty and violence. This is a character driven story with each character (the father, mother, son and daughter) moved by their own dreams and desires.
According to the director, Gabriel Martins, soccer is often regarded as a lottery ticket in Brazil and he wanted to incorporate this into the script and story also because of his love and passion for the sport. The father, played by actor Carlos Francisco has dreams of his son playing soccer. But his son, played by Cicero Lucas has his own dreams of becoming an astrophysicist and colonizing Mars one day. He even builds his own telescope from scraps of material so that he can view the red planet of Mars.
Excellent performances were delivered by the mother, played by Rejane Faria and the lesbian daughter, played by Camilla Damiao. The mother has an unexpected T.V. prank encounter which leaves her constantly feeling frazzled and out of sorts and wondering if she is cursed. The daughter explores her sexual desires with another free-spirited woman and eventually moves in with her into an apartment despite the initial reluctance of her parents.
Director and writer, Gabriel Martins who has recently signed with CAA,wanted to explore themes of race, sexism, homophobia, the plight of the working class in this character driven story and with his hometown in Brazil as the backdrop.
Before the screening of “Mars One” introductions were made by the director of the film festival, Talize Sayegh, Brazilian supermodel, Alesssandra Ambrosio, Brazilian singer, Liniker and the cast of the film.
After the film screening there was a Q & A with Gabriel Martins and the cast.
Following the Q & A was an after party at Fanny’s with offerings of delectable canapes, wine and champagne. The opening gala was also attended by Brazilian MMA fighter, Anderson Silva and black belt martial artist, independent filmmaker, actress and writer, Sanjini Bhakta.