Miami Living Magazine

Mario Lopez

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MIAMI LIVING 29 ML EXCLUSIVE! Andy Garcia is renowned as one of Hollywood's great thespians, but he's much more than a gifted actor. Garcia is a gentleman in every sense of the word —as well as a dedicated and loving family man, who continuously makes an unwavering effort to bring his current projects back to his adopted home of Miami or his native Cuban roots. Born in Havana, Cuba as Andrés Arturo García- Menéndez, he moved to Miami when he was a young child. He studied acting in high school and Miami Dade Community College South. To further pursue his passion for acting, Garcia moved to Los Angeles in 1978. Five years later, he made his film debut in Blue Skies Again— bringing him back to Miami for the shoot. This movie was a comedy, and though Garcia has appeared in many dramas, he stated, "I don't have a preference to comedy or drama — although I enjoy comedy and would like to do more of them." Garcia's magnificent performance in The Godfather Part III (Academy Award and Golden Globe nominee for Best Supporting Actor) was released in 1990 and immediately shot him into the A-List stratosphere. He has appeared in too many movies to mention, but here are a few titles: Beverly Hills Chihuahua, Dead Again, HBO's For Love or Country: The Arturo Sandoval Story (Emmy and Golden Globe nominee for Best Actor), Internal Affairs, Ocean's Eleven, Twelve and Thirteen, Smokin' Aces, The Pink Panther 2, The Untouchables and When a Man Loves a Woman. Garcia recently finished narrating the documentary VIZCAYA for WPBT2. "The producers approached me and I immediately responded to this idea," Garcia explained. "As a lover and aficionado of architecture, and having spent my formative years in Miami and still maintain a home here, I was very stimulated by this tribute." Garcia was a young man when first glimpsing Vizcaya from the bay side. "It was an extraordinary reveal," he pointed out. Vizcaya is a popular setting for wedding ceremonies – did Garcia tie the knot there? "I did not, although I married someone even more breathtaking." It's clear that he's a very charismatic man, but the soul inside many artists is sometimes a tortured one. Garcia's exile from Cuba certainly and sadly must have left long lasting emotional scars. "That's a very long story and one that I would simplify by saying the tragedy of exile is exile," Garcia said. "The profound love and nostalgia one feels for something or someone whom you cannot be with is intense and all consuming." Another project that Garcia has recently been working on has brought him back to Miami and his Cuban heritage. He's collaborating with Hilary Hemingway (author and award-winning screenwriter, daughter of Leicester, brother to Ernest) to produce and direct a film called, Hemingway and Fuentes. Gregorio Fuentes is the fishing-boat Captain who befriended Ernest Hemingway and inspired him to write the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, "The Old Man and the Sea." "I've been researching and imagining the film for a very long time. I partnered with Hilary writing the treatment and screenplay (which attracted both Sir Anthony Hopkins (Hemingway) and Annette Bening (Mary Welsh)," Garcia said. "My company CineSon is producing and I will play Fuentes and direct. We're still in the financing stages. The film takes place in Cuba, although it's unlikely that one can shoot there anytime soon —unfortunately." When Garcia is in Miami there is one restaurant in particular he likes to visit, Garcia's Seafood Grille & Fish Market on the Miami River. "No relation. I don't go into Miami much; I go east into the Gulf Stream. If I can't go by boat, I tend not to go." This busy man was here for this past season's Miami International Film Festival where, Cachao: Uno Mas (produced by his company) received its world premiere. It was moving to see Garcia's relationship with Israel López "Cachao" and his music (Cuban-music) being enjoyed by people of all ages and ethnic backgrounds. To see individuals transcend their humanity in a way that brings one to tears is very special. This is what Garcia has done, not only for this man and his music, but for generations to come by releasing this film. Andy Garcia Returns to Miami for Many Artistic Endeavors Words by Marla E. Schwartz

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