LOS ANGELES — In the 1980s, Saúl Armendáriz, a gay El Paso wrestler, began competing in the Mexican Lucha Libre world.

The film “Cassandro” tells how Armendáriz rose to stardom after creating the character Cassandro and became known as the Liberace of Lucha Libre.

“Cassandro” is directed by Academy Award and Emmy winner Roger Ross Williams, who previously directed a documentary about Cassandro called “The Man Without a Mask.”

Gael García Bernal and El Hijo del Santo in "Cassandro." (Prime Vieo/Alejandro Lopez Pineda)

For Williams, it was important to create a profoundly personal emotional story.

“I was inspired by Cassandro’s story, and I wanted to paint a bigger picture,” Williams said in an interview with Spectrum News.

Williams says “Cassandro” is an inspiring tale of self-love, being who you are, and learning that you don’t need acceptance from anyone except yourself.

“If you believe in yourself, others will believe in you, too. It’s an inspiring story for everyone,” he said.

The film stars Gael García Bernal, Roberta Colindrez, Perla de la Rosa, Joaquín Cosío and Raúl Castillo.

Benito Antonio Martnez Ocasio and Gael Garca Bernal in "Cassandro." (Prime Vieo/Alejandro Lopez Pineda)

Benito Antonio Matinez Ocasio (Bad Bunny) and El Hijo del Santo also make special appearances in the film.

On the cast, Williams said authenticity was critical to all of them, especially when portraying the culture of the border.

“They all had a personal connection to the material. Perla, this is her first film, and she is from Juárez. Raul Castillo also comes from the border in Texas. Authenticity was really important to them and that is why they embraced and loved their characters so much,” he said.

“Cassandro” is now streaming on Prime Video.

Click the arrow above to watch the full interview with Roger Ross Williams.


Facebook Twitter