Luppi, Federico

(1936- )
   Argentina-born Federico Luppi was one of the most renowned actors in his native country before he became a frequent presence in Spanish film. In Argentina, he was in the classic Héctor Olivera's pampa western Patagonia rebelde (Rebellious Patagonia, 1974) and in one of the key political films of the 1980s, Adolfo Aristarain's Tiempo de revancha (Time for Revenge, 1981).
   His first important film in Spain was in Mario Camus' La vieja música (Old Music, 1985), in which he plays an Argentinian football coach. His collaborations with Aristarain continued both in Spain and in Argentina, in an excellent series of films with an important political element, including Un lugar en el mundo (A Place in the World, 1992), Martín (hache) (1997), for which he won the Silver Shell at San Sebastian Film Festival, and Lugares comunes (Common Places, 2002). In all of these he was perfectly cast as a sharp, articulate, middle-aged man who represents the director's forceful opinions. He was also the protagonist of Guillermo del Toro's Cronos (1993), in which he played a Faustian character, and he plays a doctor lost in the jungle in John Sayles' Men with Guns (1997).
   From the 1990s, he has had a substantial career playing Americans in Spanish films. His best parts were in Nadie hablará de nosotras cuando hayamos muerto (No One Will Talk About Us When We Are Dead, Agustín Díaz Yanes, 1995), as a hitman with problems of conscience; in the metaphorical fantasy on the Civil War El espinazo del diablo (The Devil's Backbone, Guillermo del Toro, 2001) in which he is poignant as an old republican; and La distancia (The Distance, Iñaki Dorronsoro, 2006), as a boxing coach. He became a Spanish citizen in 2003.

Historical dictionary of Spanish cinema. . 2010.

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