Gael García Bernal is stepping into the ring in Cassandro, which tells the true story of the rise of the Liberace of Lucha Libre. Bernal plays Saúl Armendáriz, a gay man born and raised in El Paso, Texas, with dreams of becoming one of Mexico's most famous luchadors.
Not satisfied with being cast as a runt, Saúl creates the exótico drag character "Cassandro," upending wrestling stereotypes, and against all odds, becoming an international superstar in the process. The sports drama also stars Roberta Colindrez, Perla De La Rosa, Raúl Castillo, and Benito Antonio Martínez Ocasio — better known as Bad Bunny.
Cassandro is the narrative feature film debut of director Roger Ross Williams, who became the first Black filmmaker to win an Oscar with his short documentary, Music by Prudence. Williams previously helmed a short documentary, The Man Without a Mask, about Armendáriz, before deciding to turn his life's story into a biopic. (He also co-wrote the screenplay with David Teague.)
"I was just blown away by his inner spirit and joy. He has an aura, a light; he is filled with this positivity, and has struggled so much. And I was very moved," Williams wrote in his director's statement. "When it comes to stories that deserve to be shared with the widest possible audience, Cassandro's is among the most worthy."
Cassandro opens in select theaters on Sept. 15 and will be available to stream on Prime Video starting Sept. 22. Watch the trailer below.