Wednesday, August 10, 2011
The Day the Colonel visited La Voz de Almería
From May to July 1965, Sergio Leone was shooting "For a Few Dollars More" in Almería, which exalted him to fame, "The killing came at a price." Clint Eastwood and Colonel Mortimer played by Lee Van Cleef sought the outlaw Indio, played by Gian Maria Volonte and whose head was worth its weight in gold. When the colonel arrives in El Paso he is directed to the local newspaper. Suddenly, fiction and reality merge and the El Paso Tribune is actually La Voz de Almería, the former location that was on the corner of Rambla General Segura. This labyrinth was discovered by Jose Andujar, a former employee of La Voz de Almería when he realized that this centennial rotorcraft appeared in the film and was in the courtyard of the Archaeological Museum. How it got there is a long history. Andujar did not see the machine work but he remembered seeing the press parked in the workshops and above all, the history of Juan Soler and Antonio Morales, two veteran workers who were extras with Lee Van Cleef in the legendary film. "The scene was filmed during the day and we were asked if we wanted to be in it.. We put on fake sideburns and dressed in workman uniforms. They stopped the scene because my friend (Juan Soler) made a mistake", Antonio Morales recalled after more than forty years. Morales could not remember the title of the film nor its director or the actor. "He was a tall, very stern face and a scar," he adds. Lee Van Cleef was supported by a real composition box to read the news of the El Paso Tribune and an insert out of it. A few years later, the La Voz de Almería location changed and moved to Avenue Montserrat, a building that had housed a real movie studio assembled by Manuel Baquero in 1967 and where they filmed interiors, for among others, "El Condor", "The Amazons" and "El bulevar del Ron" recalls José Enrique Martínez. This pioneer relic in the history of cinema was recently discovered and the old machine should go to the museum of the Casa del Cinema. "We should also discover many other items scattered throughout the city of Almería. There are more than you think and it would not hurt to give them, and a plate acknowledging this", said Martínez Moya. José Salcedo did something similar with the costume and set of guns belonging to José Galera "El Habichuela" (aka The Bean).