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After Pedro Almodovar's "Women On The Verge Of A Nervous Breakdown", the Spanish cinema has really made a break through. For a while, Almodovar was almost the only Spanish director known outside, but in the mid-90's, a new surge of talented film makers was born. One of them was Alejandro Amenabar.

Amenabar was born in Chile, 1972, and he has dual nationality of Spanish and Chilean. He was very young when he started directing and he made his first short films at the age of twenty. He was noticed immediately and received several awards in film festivals, for not only his work as a director, but also a composer. He writes the music to his films himself. Amenabar's first full length movie was Tesis in 1996, which made him the youngest director in Spain. The suspense thriller also introduced two promising young actors, Felipe Martinez and Eduardo Noreiga. It was succeeded well in Spain and received no less than 7 Spanish Goya awards. A year later he returned with Abre Los Ojos (Open Your Eyes), a wonderful scifi story with a very imaginative plot. The movie, and the beauty of Penelope Cruz seduced the critics and also the viewers. Abre Los Ojos was brought to American public in 2001 in the form of Vanilla Sky, which was starred and produced by Tom Cruise. It's basically the same movie, the camera shots are almost identical and even miss Cruz plays the same role as in Abre Los Ojos.

Amenabar's talents did not go unnoticed by Hollywood, but he preferred to remain in Spain. However, in 2001 he made his first English spoken film, The Others. It's a very subtle horror movie which really shows Amenabar's talents as a master of creating a suspenseful atmosphere. Starring Nicole Kidman, The Others became a huge success and an international breakthrough for Amenabar.

Filmography:

(D=director, C=composer, W=writer)
  • 1994 - Al Lado Del Atlas (C)
  • 1995 - Luna (D,W)
  • 1996 - Tesis (D,C,W)
    aka Snuff (UK festival title)
    aka Thesis (USA video title)
  • 1997 - Abre Los Ojos (D,C,W)
    aka Open Your Eyes
  • 1998 - Allanamiento De Morada (C)
  • 1999 - La Lengua De Las Mariposas (C)
    aka Butterfly
  • 1999 - Nadie Conoce A Nadie (C,W)
  • 2001 - The Others (D,C,W)
    aka Los Otros
  • 2001 - Vanilla Sky (Writer, story)

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