19 July 2024 The Irish Film & Television Network
Highly anticipated IFTA-nominated Irish documentary Castro’s Spies to release on April 28th
10 Mar 2023 : News Desk
Castros Spies
Gambit Pictures’ IFTA-nominated feature documentary Castro’s Spies will be released in select Irish cinemas on April 28th.

IFTA-nominated Castro’s Spies tells the story of an elite group of Cuban intelligence agents sent undercover to the U.S. in the 1990s. From their recruitment, training and eventual capture on U.S. soil; this film peers into a secret world of false identities, love affairs and betrayal. Using never seen before footage from the Cuban Film Institute’s archive and first-hand testimony from the people at the heart of this story, Castro’s Spies gives a rare glimpse into the shadowy world of a spy – where the stakes are life and death.

The film features real FBI surveillance footage of the spies in action and never-before-seen colour archive of the Cuban Revolution. The ‘Cuban Five’ trial remains the largest multiple defendant espionage case ever prosecuted in the U.S.

The most serious charges were conspiracy to commit espionage and conspiracy to commit murder. The arrest of the Cuban 5 and other members of the “Wasp Network” was seen as a major victory against Cuban espionage in Florida by both the US authorities and the groups they infiltrated. The filmmakers confirm they had un-restricted access to the Cuban Film Institute’s archive, saying ‘Immersing ourselves in the world of a Cuban Spy cell was an exhilarating process.’

The film picked up awards for Best Irish Film at Docs Ireland Film Festival and Best International Feature at the Melbourne Documentary Film Festival.

Co-directors Gary Lennon and Ollie Aslin (in his directorial debut) summarised the film saying: “We have set out to make a film that gets the rare opportunity to peer into a spy’s clandestine and dangerous world. Ultimately, we want to tell this story to understand how far someone is willing to go for what they truly believe in; and with this pose the question, how far would we all be willing to go?”

Read our interview with director Gary Lennon discusses the making of his documentary Castro's Spies.

The film opens in cinemas on April 28th, coinciding with the weekend of May Day, where in Cuba this is celebrated with the May Day Parade, demonstrating both a joyful celebration and triumphant victory of the Cuban Revolution. The film is released with the support of Screen Ireland.

Castro’s Spies will be released nationwide April 28th.

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