Drug-War Drama Debuts in Hollywood

Drug-War Drama Debuts in Hollywood

By Valerie Tejeda 03/09/12

Controversial LA play puts a spin on our bloody narco-war with Mexico.

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Mario Montana Mora rehearses for
"Timboctou"
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A hotly-anticipated bilingual play aims to give audiences a different perceptive on the Mexican drug war. Timboctou—a dark comedy that premiers Sunday at LA‘s REDCAT theater—skewers ruthless drug lords, oblivious US consumers and the Mexican narco-terrorism that has claimed 40,000 Mexican lives since 2006. “I believe it's a question of bi-national responsibility," says director Martín Acosta. "I don't think the play analyzes who is responsible. But it assumes there's a very direct link, looking from the Mexican side." The play, written by 27-year-old Mexican playwright Alejandro Ricaño, joins many Spanish language media programs—and even a dedicated music genre called "narcocorridos" (drug-themed songs)—in encouraging people to view the drug war as a product of greed and addiction, rather than simply the fault of Mexico and Latin America. It was co-developed by the University of Guadalajara and the CalArts Center for New Performance. “It's easy to blame the Mexicans. I don't ever see the other side, the people who are taking all these drugs, which is us," says Andrew Steele, who wrote the screenplay for Casa de Mi Padre, a similar Spanish-language satire produced by Will Ferrell. "It's absurd to me that anyone could blame other people for their own weakness...What's happening is a bunch of crazy people are doing drugs and not realizing people are getting killed over there." 

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Entertainment journalist and author Valerie Tejeda spends her days reporting on books, television, and all things pertaining to pop culture, and spends her nights writing novels for teens. Her stories have appeared on a variety of different publications, including but not limited to: VanityFair, MTV, The Huffington Post, TeenVogue, She Knows, Latina, The Fix, Salon.com, Cosmopolitan, and more. You can find Valerie on Linkedin and Twitter.

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