Berlinale: Programme

Film file



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People all over the world mourned the death of Pedro Zamora on 11 November 1994. Born in Havana, this young man made a name for himself for his appearance on the MTV reality show “The Real World: San Francisco”. Pedro moved into the show’s location – a house on Lombard Street – in February 1994. His HIV positive status and his open homosexuality made his involvement in the series controversial. But MTV’s young audience identified easily with this intelligent, good-looking Latino who had all the makings of a star. His presence on the show also meant that audiences in the USA and abroad had to engage with the topic of Aids. Even Bill Clinton cited him as exemplary in this context in a speech before the US Congress.
This screen adaptation of Pedro Zamora’s life depicts his childhood in Havana as the youngest of eight children, his emigration to the USA with part of his family in 1980, his mother’s death from cancer, his work as an Aids activist, his appearance on “The Real World” as well as the short time that was left to him to act subsequently. Pedro’s efforts not only made a deep impression on the target group but also affected film producers Richard Glatzer and Wash Westmoreland: “At the sad age of 17, he took what was then considered a death-sentence – his HIV diagnosis – and turned it into positive motivation. Instead of sinking into depression, Pedro opted for activism. He wanted to change people’s minds – and he did change them – and he still continues to do so.”

USA 2008, 93 min


Nick Oceano


Alex Loynaz
Justina Machado
Hale Appleman
DaJuan Johnson