17 February, 2012

Franco's occasional actors: CRISTINA HIGUERAS

1988 was an unusual year for the actress Cristina de la Asunción Higueras: this striking brunette, most of whose acting has been on TV and the stage, appeared in two full-length theatrical films. One of them was Manuel Gutiérrez Aragón’s Malaventura, in which the actress (born on May 14, 1961) was strangely cast as the mother of the character played by Miguel Molina (born, like Higueras, in Madrid, and on November 27, 1963). Higueras’s other film that year was Jess Franco’s Dark Mission; Flowers of Evil, featuring her as Christopher Lee’s swearing daughter, also the love interest for Chris Mitchum.

Higueras’s other work in the cinema has been sporadic. Her acting career, starting in 1981 and still ongoing as of writing, comprises a mere nine feature films, the first being Francisco Lara Polop’s Dallas spoof J.R. contraataca (1983) and the rest including occasional films in English, which language Higueras is conversant in: the two 1992 productions Hostage, starring Sam Neill, and Shooting Elizabeth, with Jeff Goldblum, Mimi Rogers and a host of distinguished Spanish players (Juan Echanove, Simón Andreu, Fernando Guillén Cuervo, Ernesto Alterio, etc.).

These films appear to have been interludes in a career whose preoccupations have clearly lain elsewhere. In 1981, she was part of the cast of a TV production of Ibsen’s Enemy of the People, and soon after this, she spent a period as one of the hosts of the Spanish edition of Sesame Street. In 1992, tired of depending on others for her career, she created her own theatre company, Nueva Comedia, for which she subsequently found a co-manager in the actress Fiorella Faltoyano. Higueras, often with Faltoyano, has since starred in her own stage productions of Wait Until Dark, Lillian Hellman’s The Children’s Hour and Agnes of God.

Images of Higueras’s role in Franco’s Dark Mission: Flowers of Evil:

Higueras’s imdb entry:

Higueras’s Videobook:

Text by Nzoog Wahrlfhehen

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