Mar del Plata Film Fest Screens Evita's Only Leading Cinematic Role

Eva Duarte in La Prodiga - P 2013
Courtesy of Mar del Plata Film Fest

Eva Duarte in La Prodiga - P 2013

Restored prints of 18 Argentine films from the Turner collection and vintage newsreels mark the fest's focus on the Golden Age of cinema, including Evita’s starrer ‘La Prodiga.'

MAR DE PLATA – The 28th edition of the Mar del Plata International Film Festival is having a special feel for the Golden Age of cinema as seen through the history of the Argentine film industry, including Eva Peron’s only lead role in cinema: Mario Soffici’s La Prodiga (casted with her maiden name Eva Duarte).

Soffici’s 1945 film is presented within a special program section, Argentine Cinema Forever, consisting of eighteen films from the Turner International collection, full of negatives and prints of a large number of independent Argentine films and productions from the old Lumiton, SIDE and San Miguel studios.

The collection was donated to the National Film Institute (INCAA) last year, and this is the first batch to be restored by the INCAA to its original 35mm format, an effort coordinated by film historian Fernando Martin Peña with the collaboration of Georgina Tosi and Marina Coen, from the INCAA’s Cinematheque.

The program spans a big part of Argentine sound film history, from 1936 to 1958, and represents the peak of studio filmmaking in the country, an era the festival is honoring this year through the shorts selected to introduce each screening: a series of original newsreels reporting on the festival’s early editions in the late 1950s.

The original episodes of the newsreel Sucesos Argentinos were found, restored and delivered by the Buenos Aires Film Museum, and feature 1950s Hollywood stars such as Fred McMurray, Errol Flynn, Irene Dunne, and Edward G. Robinson attending the festival’s first edition.

The Mar del Plata Film Fest runs Nov. 16-24.