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BLOW

About The Production

The ingenuity of Americans as marketers of products cannot be disputed as McDonald's and Coca Cola can be found in nearly every country around the world. For an ambitious salesman like George Jung, he was able to grab the spirit of capitalism and the American Dream and turn it upside down.

Johnny Depp stars in the New Line Cinema drama, BLOW, directed by Ted Demme. The film was written by Nick Cassavetes and David McKenna, and is being produced by Ted Demme, Joel Stillerman, and Denis Leary for Spanky Pictures and Apostle Pictures.

Georgia Kacandes is the executive producer with Michael DeLuca.

Behind the camera personnel include Ellen Kuras, director of photography; Michael Hanan, production designer; Mark Bridges, costume designer and Kevin Tent, editor.

Other members of the international ensemble cast include Spanish film stars Penelope Cruz and Jordi Molla, German actress Franka Potente (Run, Lola, Run), Academy Award nominee Australian Rachel Griffiths (Hilary and Jackie), Ray Liotta (Goodfellas), Paul Reubens (Pee Wee's Big Adventure), Ethan Suplee (American History X), Monet Mazur, Max Perlich and New Zealander Cliff Curtis (Three Kings).

Based on Bruce Porter's non-fiction book of the same name, BLOW spans five decades of one man's journey from small town America to the jungles of Medellin, Colombia. George Jung (Depp) was the first American to partner with Colombian cartel leader, Pablo Escobar, to begin trafficking cocaine into the United States.

"I was looking for a story that was kind of off the beaten path," explains Director Ted Demme, whose previous efforts include The Ref, Life and Beautiful Girls. "I had read the book, ‘Blow,' five or six years ago. I was just amazed at what George Jung had been through in his life.

"Here was a guy from a small town in Massachusetts who, at the end of the day, was responsible for bringing in some 85 percent of the cocaine into the United States during the 1970s and 1980s."

But, Demme is quick to point out that BLOW is not simply another drug movie. "It's also a heartbreaking love story between a father and a daughter. It's multi-layered, and that was what was exciting to me as a director.

The casting of Johnny Depp in the lead part added a new dimension to the project according to Joel Stillerman, long-time Demme producing partner.

"The key to the success of the role of George Jung was the subtlety and intelligence that an actor could bring to it. Somebody had to make him more than a drug dealer. And that's what Johnny Depp does. He brings a cerebral quality to his roles." says Stillerman.

Known for his eclectic acting choices, Depp's interest in the screenplay and project stemmed from visualizing a unique film character.

According to Depp, "He (George) just became a pirate, really. He didn't believe in the system or politics or rules or bosses. He just wanted to go out there and live."

While the story never strays far from Jung, an unusual circle of characters surround him throughout his mercurial journey. Demme was pleased to have the creative freedom to cast some talented, albeit unknown in the United States, actors in those parts.

For example, portraying Jung's wife, Mirtha, is Penelope Cruz. Recently seen in All the Pretty Horses, Cruz has made a strong impact into the American film marketplace after a successful career in her native Spain.

The tone of the film is set by the volatile dynamics between George and Mirtha Jung. Their intense emotional roller coaster ride se

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