Zoila and Andy

At the height of the Cold War, and deep inside the Cuban Revolution, a young diplomat and her rebel boyfriend must choose between their love for each other or an ideal world as they become embroiled in a plot to assassinate Fidel Castro. This is the incredible true story of two people I know better than anyone else… my parents.

  • Boris Rodriguez
    Eddie The Sleepwalking Cannibal
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Writer Biography - Boris Rodriguez

Boris Rodriguez is an internationally acclaimed filmmaker. He debuted with the award-winning documentary HAVANA KIDS before attending the Canadian Film Centre in Toronto. Boris’ second film BESO NOCTURNO premiered at the TIFF in the Discovery Section and was later selected for a retrospective at the MoMA. His third film PERFECT also launched at TIFF before boasting a successful run across North America. Boris’ feature debut: EDDIE THE SLEEPWALKING CANNIBAL screened at prominent festivals including the Tribeca Film Festival and Karlovy Vary, as well as Edinburgh and the Leeds International Film Festival where it won the coveted Mélies d’Argent Award for Best Feature. EDDIE was also the recipient of the Black Tulip Award from the Imagine Film Festival in Amsterdam and was nominated for the Narcisse Award at Switzerland’s Neuchâtel Film Festival. On the heels of EDDIE’s success, Boris became a finalist in NBC Universal’s prestigious Emerging Directors Program that seeks to increase the diversity of NBC Universal’s episodic directors. Boris’ next feature ZOILA AND ANDY is being developed with the support of Telefilm Canada and the SODEC.

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Writer Statement

Zoila and Andy is a celebration of love and idealism; the hopes they both raise and the sacrifices they both demand.

Growing up as a Latino-Canadian, I knew my upbringing was unlike that of my friends. The differences weren’t just about cuisine and customs, as you would expect, but also politics. Their view of the world was somewhat more homogeneous than mine. My mother is Mexican and catholic, with an interest in the finer things in life, while my father is a Cuban communist and an atheist. I didn’t pay much attention to these differences as a child, or how they informed my nuanced view of the world. But as a teenager, when I grappled with identity issues, I began to wonder who my parents really were. I wanted to know not only how these two opposites had attracted, but had built a life together. I also wanted to know why the story of how they met was so shrouded in secrecy. Although I had traveled extensively to Mexico City and Havana, my mother had expressly forbidden me from visiting her hometown. In Cuba, in the early days of its tourist industry, travel restrictions to remote areas of the country kept me from my father’s hometown. It wasn’t until my early adult years, when I delved deeper into my parents’ past that I discovered their incredible story. I was in awe of their high-stakes cloak-and-dagger ordeals. I could not believe that they knew Fidel Castro and the Che Guevara and that they had been asked to spy by both sides of the conflict. I didn’t know that my mother had experienced hunger from poverty as a child, or that my father had fought alongside Fidel Castro against an American invasion, and least of all, that my father had proposed to my mother during the Cuban missile crises, when he thought the world was ending. All of this stood in stark contrast to the tranquil suburban life I knew growing up in Montreal.

My filmmaking mind immediately wanted to tell their story. I already knew what kind of film it would be: an adventure romance about how, in a confusing and violent world, acting out of love will always guide us to where we belong.