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Tigrero: A Film That Was Never Made (1994)
Starring: Samuel Fuller, Jim Jarmusch
Director: Mika Kaurismaki
Category: Documentary, Special Interest, Foreign
Studio: Fantoma Films
75 mins



In 1954, legendary filmmaker Samuel Fuller (Pickup On South Street, Shock Corridor) was sent by 20th Century Fox to the most remote regions of the Amazon to scout locations for his upcoming film Tigrero!, a rousing adventure tale that was to star John Wayne, Ava Gardner and Tyrone Power. Armed with a 15mm camera, 75 boxes of cigars and two cases of vodka, Fuller ventured into the jungle. There he befriended the Karaja Indians, lived with them, and photographed their ceremonies and way of life. Reluctantly, Fuller returned to Hollywood but the film was never made.

Forty years later, Sam Fuller returned to the Brazilian jungle, bringing with him his friend and fellow filmmaker Jim Jarmusch (Ghost Dog, Down By Law), a camera crew and the footage he'd shot those many years earlier. The ultimate storyteller, Sam tells Jim about his time with the Karaja, his career in Hollywood and his unique philosophy on life. They show the Karaja the footage Sam shot, conjuring up their friends and loved ones, some who's faces they haven't seen for decades.

Winner of the 1994 International Critics' Award at the Berlin Film Festival, Tigrero: A Film That Was Never Made is a priceless travelogue, a meditation on the power of film and the magic of memory, and a loving portrait of a gentle and spiritual culture.