Lawsuit Halts Filming Of Márquez's "Memories of My Melancholy Whores"

Gabriel García Márquez's novel Memories of My Melancholy Whores tells the tale of a 90-year-old man who, for his birthday, gives himself one evening of “wild love with an adolescent virgin.” Codirector and producer Ricardo del Rio is attempting to bring the famed author's vision to life and is in the process of filming an adaptation of the book.

But production was halted when the Regional Coalition Against Trafficking in Women and Girls in Latin America and the Caribbean filed a complaint about the film with Mexico’s Attorney General’s Office. Though they did not name Márquez directly, they did say the lawsuit was leveled at “whoever is responsible for acts that could be constituted as the crime of condoning child prostitution.”

Coalition director Teresa Ulloa believes the film would promote pedophilia to a wider audience. “As a book, it does not have access to the most vulnerable people in society,” Ulloa told the AP. “Once they make the movie, it will be in movie theaters and later it will surely be on television.”

“They are censoring a film before it’s been made, without knowing either the script or the vision of the director,” Del Rio responded. He told Mexican newspaper Reforma that filming was scheduled to begin in late October, but had to be postponed after the state of Puebla withdrew funding for the movie because of the lawsuit. Producers of the film say that 21-year-old actress Ana de Armas had been tapped for the part and that the film was never going to deal with her age.

“Here they have simply killed our adaptation. They have dealt us a fatal blow because we can’t film without all the resources,” Del Rio said.

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