‘Una Noche’ Stars, Who Play Twins Fleeing Cuba, Expecting Twins After
2:13 PM PDT 8/30/2013 by Seth Abramovitch
The pair, who play brother and sister in the critically acclaimed new
film, vanished on their way to Tribeca; now they are in love, in America
and in need of diapers.
It’s a remarkable story of art imitating life, sort of.
A pair of young Cuban actors who play twins who attempt to flee the
Communist country have sought political asylum in the U.S. — and are
now expecting twins of their own.
The film is Una Noche, a gripping tale of a trio of beautiful Havana
teenagers and their daring escape from the city. It began as the thesis
film project from NYU film student Lucy Molloy. The project gained the
interest of NYU alum Spike Lee, who offered his input from the early
script stages and championed Una Noche through its debut on the film
2012 festival circuit. There it collected a slew of awards, including
best actor, best cinematography and best new narrative director at the
Tribeca Film Festival.
It was on the way to that festival in April 2012 that two of the film’s
stars — Javier Nunez Florian and Anailin de la Rua de la Torre, who
play sensitive twin siblings Elio and Lila — vanished from the Miami
Airport during a layover to New York City. Only costar Dariel Arrechaga
— who plays their horny, hotheaded pal Raul — made it to Tribeca,
telling reporters there that he had no knowledge of their whereabouts.
Three days later, the missing Cuban actors confirmed to Reuters that
they were alive and well and seeking political asylum. The dramatic
getaway made international headlines.
The pair, now both 21, have at last resurfaced, showing up to a recent
Spanish-language press event in Miami. (The film is already in theaters
in Miami and New York and currently available on iTunes; it gets a Los
Angeles theatrical opening on Friday, Sept. 6.) It turns out that Nunez
Florian and de la Rua de la Torre — both non-actors chosen by Molloy
after auditioning over 2,000 Cuban youth — fell in love on the set, and
are currently living together as boyfriend and girlfriend in Las Vegas.
What’s more, de la Rua de la Torre is four months pregnant with twins.
“It’s just crazy, because they’re twins in the movie,” a flabbergasted
Molloy tells The Hollywood Reporter by phone. “The screen twins are
having real twins together!” Last week’s press event in Miami was the
first time the 33-year-old London native had laid eyes on her leads
since shooting wrapped in 2010. Both stars are still interested in
pursuing acting careers, Molloy says, but de la Rua de la Torre is
waiting tables to get by while Nunez Florian has been “doing this and
that.” Arrechaga has been living legally in New York City, a source
close to the actor tells THR.
STORY: Cuban Actors Missing From Tribeca Film Festival Resurface in Miami
The development is made all the stranger by the fact that Molloy, who
had lived in Cuba for a number of years before shooting Una Noche, had
noticed a great many pairs of identical twins living there and sought
them out when casting extras: “If you look through the movie, a lot of
them are identical twins. I just found it really amazing that there was
so many twins in Havana. I thought it would be cool to incorporate that
— and because [Elio and Lila are] twins in the movie.”
The Cuban government has so far remained silent on the actors’
defections. Recent changes in Cuba’s travel laws have increased the
length its citizens can leave the country from 11 to 24 months.
Meanwhile, on the American side, a new visa policy offers Cubans five
years to visit the U.S., during which they can stay up to six months at
“It’s lucky for them,” Molloy offers, hopefully. “They should be able to
return to Cuba to see their family.”
Source: “‘Una Noche’ Stars, Who Play Twins Fleeing Cuba, Expecting Twins
After Fleeing Cuba” –