Antonio Banderas and Juliette Binoche lead the global cast of “The 33,” and the stars celebrated the miraculous story of survival at the film’s glamorous premiere on Monday night during AFI Fest at the TCL Chinese Theatre in Hollywood.
The disaster movie, directed by Patricia Riggen, tells the real-life story of the 2010 Chilean mining accident that became an international cause célèbre when a cave-in trapped 33 men at the bottom of a remote desert gold mine.
Banderas plays Mario “Super Mario” Sepúlveda, public face for the group of miners, who made daily video logs to assure the public that they were OK during the terrifying ordeal.
Stuck 20 stories below the surface level, under an unstable mountain slab described as “twice the mass of the Empire State Building,” the survivors were low on food and water from the start of their horrific experience on Aug. 5, 2010.
Spoiler warning for a five-year-old real-life event watched by an estimated 1 billion people worldwide: The miners were eventually rescued after they were trapped in the 121-year-old San José copper-gold mine for 69 days.
Miraculously, they were all in reasonably good physical condition when they returned to the surface. Two miners were found to be suffering from
Survivors Luis Urzua, Edison ‘Elvis’ Pena, Juan Carlos Aguilar and Mario Gomez were all guests at the Hollywood premiere Monday, where they had the chance to mingle with the actors who portrayed them in the film.
The screenwriting team, which included “Dallas Buyers Club” co-writer Craig Borten and Ladyhawke and “Backbeat” writer Michael Thomas, adapted “The 33” in part from Héctor Tobar’s authorized 2014 book “Deep Down Dark.”