And Starring Pancho Villa as Himself

2003, Drama, 1h 50m

3 Reviews 500+ Ratings

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Movie Info

Loosely based on real-life events, this film follows renowned revolutionary Pancho Villa (Antonio Banderas) as he attempts to procure funding to overthrow the Mexican government. Villa strikes up an intriguing agreement with Hollywood director D.W. Griffith (Colm Feore), who is interested in paying the rebel for the movie rights to his exciting story. Soon, young film executive Frank Thayer (Eion Bailey) is joining Villa on his dangerous and violent exploits.

Cast & Crew

Eion Bailey
Frank Thayer
Michael McKean
William Christy Cabanne
Colm Feore
D.W. Griffith
Matt Day
John Reed
Damián Alcázar
Gen. Rodolfo Fierro
Kyle Chandler
Raoul Walsh
Alexa Davalos
Teddy Sampson
Alan Arkin
Sam Drebben
Jim Broadbent
Harry Aitken
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Critic Reviews for And Starring Pancho Villa as Himself

All Critics (3) | Top Critics (2) | Fresh (3)

Audience Reviews for And Starring Pancho Villa as Himself

  • Jun 27, 2012
    After nine years I finally had a chance to see this TV film starring Antonio Banderas as Pancho Villa. I was especially interested in this one because at the time of production was the most expensive 2-hour television/cable movie ever made, with a budget of over $30 million! The story follows the filming of The Life of General Villa (produced and shot in 1914 by the legendary D.W. Griffith ) and is told through Frank N. Thayer, a studio boss's nephew who gets a career boost when he is placed in charge of the project. At that time, Mexican revolutionary Pancho Villa (played by Antonio Banderas) finds himself without adequate funding to finance his war against the military government, and he decides to send emissaries to movie producers to convince them to pay to film his progress and the actual battles. Producer D.W. Griffith (Colm Feore) is immediately interested and convinces Mutual Film Studios boss Harry E. Aitkin to send a film crew. The original movie was the first feature length movie, introducing Americans to the true horrors of war that they had never personally seen. It's sad that the original film has been lost, but some unedited film reels of the battle, showing Pancho Villa and his army fighting Federal forces, as well as photographs and publicity stills taken from the original film survived. Even the actual contract that Pancho Villa signed with Frank N. Thayer and the Mutual Film Company on January 5, 1914 to film the Battle of Ojinaga still exists and is in a museum in Mexico City. This movie surprised me with the quality of the acting, screenplay, sound and camera work - pleasantly! It won a couple of awards, like2005 Art Directors Guild award for Excellence in Production Design and 2004 Emmy Award for "Outstanding Sound Editing for a Miniseries, Movie or a Special". If you like history and want to know more about this part of it, rent it and enjoy it!
    Panta O Super Reviewer
  • Jan 02, 2011
    This is an excellent historical drama with a fine cast led by Antonio Banderas, and Eion Bailey. Well-written and directed, with plenty of action and interesting sidelights into a very complex central figure. It might not be totally factual, but it clearly states that at the beginning of the film--"this film will show how things could have happened". I really enjoyed this movie. It was well done, and the acting was top notch.
    Cynthia S Super Reviewer
  • Apr 10, 2009
    Pretty average portrayal, Well I know nothing about its historical accuracies so I can't judge
    Arash X Super Reviewer

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