On August 5th, hundreds gathered at the historic John Anson Ford Amphitheatre in Hollywood to watch the 50th anniversary screening of the classic Mexican western Tiempo de Morir. The film, co-written by Gabriel García Márquez and Carlos Fuentes, and directed by Arturo Ripstein, attracted people from all across Los Angeles, some familiar with Libros Schmibros and others not. Before the screening began, guests enjoyed food and drinks with family and friends on the newly renovated Ford Theatre grounds.
David Kipen opened the event by warmly welcoming the crowd and sharing with them the origin and mission of Libros Schmibros. Next, Los Angeles Times film critic Mark Olsen interviewed Gabriel García Márquez’s son Rodrigo García, an acclaimed director and screenwriter who released his latest film, Last Days in the Desert, earlier this year. They discussed his father’s career in cinema and the ideas behind the story for Tiempo de Morir. Although García Márquez allowed some of his novels to become films, he never adapted them himself, recognizing how difficult that would be. Rodrigo, however, remarked that perhaps now with the help of the latest digital technology it would be possible for a director to do justice to his father’s greatest novel, the wildly imaginative One Hundred Years of Solitude.
After nightfall, the screening of Tiempo de Morir began on an over 20-foot screen framed by the Hollywood Hills. To everyone’s amusement, the first subtitles to appear were in Spanish rather than English for the Spanish-language film. That was quickly corrected and, for the next 90 minutes, the audience was engrossed in the tragic story of Juan Sáyago, an aging vaquero who cannot escape the consequences of his past deeds.
We thank everyone who attended the event and hope to see everyone at future screenings that will further showcase the rich intersection between film and literature.