eeting Diego Maradona was a not an easy task: Asif Kapadia – Eventually, though, Maradona and Kapadia came face to face, conducting a number of in-depth interviews.
Mumbai: The chaos, the genius, the media’s and the world’s endless fascination with him – that is Diego Maradona. With Maradona leading such a tumultuous life, the filmmakers were faced with the difficult choice of where to focus their editorial. His rise from street kid to home-based superstar at Boca Juniors is a pivotal journey, and a priceless rags-to-riches story, while his world record transfer to Barcelona and his tempestuous spell with the Catalan giants is riddled with controversy, not least a notorious on-pitch brawl that features in the movie. PVR Pictures releases the film in India on 11th October 2019.
“On his Facebook page and Instagram page there was a picture of us getting the Oscar® and he was saying, ‘These guys are going to make a film about me next.’ So we spent a lot of time interviewing him in Dubai where he was living.”
Conducting the conversations proved a challenge. “It seems that there is an archetypal way you meet him,” Kapadia explains. “You arrive and his team would say, ‘No, no, he’s not feeling good today. Try tomorrow.’”
And so the process repeats. Eventually, though, Maradona and Kapadia came face to face, conducting a number of in-depth interviews. Not surprisingly, he proved a mercurial subject. “You forget how many people Maradona meets,” the director says, “and the things he has been through, the things his body has been through.”
Meeting Maradona is no easy task, although the filmmakers were helped by the fact that the footballer loved SENNA and enjoyed the fact that team had won an Oscar® for AMY during the negotiation process.
“It was a very similar process to what we went through before,” he says. “I don’t take a camera. I just talk to people, build up trust and try and explain that we are telling a story. We are not taking sides. We want the truth to come out and we want everyone to be part of it.”
“But I am old school. I like theatrical releases. I like seeing things on at the cinema with audiences. And I think Diego is a movie star in the same way that Amy and Senna were. I want to see him on the big screen; that was important to me.” Kapadia concludes.