VIFF: World Premiere of 3 DAYS IN HAVANA Co-Directed by Gil Bellows & Tony Pantages

Vancouver friends Gil Bellows and Tony Pantages have been talking about making a movie together for decades. So what better place to debut their first feature film 3 Days in Havana than the Vancouver International Film Festival (VIFF) last Saturday night?

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A real-life Havana fortune teller plays the Death card for Jack Petty (Gil Bellows), seemingly a Canadian on a routine business trip to Cuba, in the opening scene of this twisty Hitchcockian thriller. Will Death coming calling for Petty? Befriended by charming rogue Harry Smith (a sexy-as-hell Greg Wise), he gets a personal tour of the city’s stylish and seedy attractions, populated by untrustworthy characters like Anders (Christopher Heyerdahl) from the Canadian Consulate,  mob operative Benny (Robin Dunne), Pepe (Toronto indie director Don McKellar) and intense man (Michael Eklund). At the back of it all — mob boss Francis Liddy (John Cassini) and the mysterious broker (Phyllida Law).

How did this stellar Canadian-British cast come about? Gil Bellows is “dear friends” with Greg Wise (Emma Thompson’s husband) and Phyllida Law (Emma Thompson’s mother). Another close connection: Tony Pantages and Christopher Heyerdahl went to high school together in West Vancouver, where many in the premiere audience seemed to be from, including their former drama teacher who was listed in the credits. 

P.S. That ain’t no green screen. Tony Pantages jokingly calls  the movie 3 YEARS in Havana because they spent so long shooting there, but is effusive in his praise of the Cuban people and in recommending the city to other filmmakers.

 

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You can catch the next screening of 3 Days in Havana at 4:20 p.m. on October 4th at the International Village.

John Cassini tweet

3 days tweet

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