Pop quiz: What does the newly-released blockbuster film ‘Bladerunner 2049’ and Havana, Cuba have in common?
Answer: Cuban actress Ana de Armas. And if you do not know who this jaw-dropping, beautiful and talented actress is, who the Hollywood Reporter describes as “Hollywood’s Next Big Thing”, Google her now and you will begin to understand what all the fuss is about! Better still, buy yourself a ticket to see the film yourself, and you will soon be buzzing about her as well!
Born in Havana in 1988, de Armas had always dreamt of becoming an actress and at the age of 14 began her acting studies at the National Theatre School of Havana and graduated four years later (or at least almost did before she decided to move to Spain with a movie contract in hand shortly before completing her studies).
Her first film (at the age of 16), directed by Manuel Gutierrez Aragon, called ‘Virgin Rose’(2006), also starred the legendary Cuban actor Jorge Perugorria ( ‘Fresa y Chocolate’(1993) and the recently reviewed ‘ Four Seasons in Havana’ (2016)). Following an acting career in Spain where de Armas enjoyed success in film as well as television, in 2014 she moved to Los Angeles to pursue a Hollywood film career. There she secured roles in Todd Philips’ comedy ‘War Dogs’(2016) and ‘Hands of Stone’ (2016) a boxing film starring Robert de Niro, and based on the life of Panamanian boxer Roberto Duran.
However, playing an intimate, hologram-friend of Ryan Gosling’s character in ‘Bladerunner 2049’ is sure to be the one role where movie audiences (as well as casting agents and directors) will take note.
I had the pleasure of catching the film in IMAX where not only are the characters larger than life, they are really larger than life and on a screen where no one can hide (hello 74 year old Harrison Ford! Don’t worry. You still look great!).
However, there is a seminal scene in this film that will be talked about for years which features Ryan Gosling, de Armas and another actress, Mackenzie Davis. This simple four minute segment out of a 2 hour and 44 minute film makes the price of admission worth it. All of it!
Introducing Ana de Armas. You can thank me later.
A.J.Twist is a Montreal-based travel writer who is constantly pitching film scripts to a certain film actress’ agent.