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Robert Rodriguez

 

Rodriguez went to the College of Communication at the University of Texas at Austin, where he also developed a love of cartooning. Not having grades high enough to be accepted into the school's film program, he created a daily comic strip entitled Los Hooligans. Many of the characters were based on his siblings Ц in particular, one of his sisters, Maricarmen. The comic ran for three years in the student newspaper The Daily Texan, while Rodriguez continued to make short films.
The short film "Bedhead" attracted enough attention to encourage him to seriously attempt a career as a filmmaker. He went on to shoot the action flick El Mariachi (1992) in Spanish; he shot it for around $7,000 with money raised by his friend Adrian Kano and from payments for his own participation in medical testing studies. Rodriguez won the Audience Award for this film at the Sundance Film Festival in 1993. Intended for the Spanish-language low-budget home-video market, the film was "cleaned up" by Columbia Pictures with post-production work costing several hundred thousand dollars before it was distributed in the United States. Its promotion still advertised it as "the movie made for $7,000". Rodriguez described his experiences making the film in his book Rebel Without a Crew (1995).
Rodriguez co-directed Sin City (2005), an adaptation of the Frank Miller Sin City comic books; Quentin Tarantino guest-directed a scene. During production in 2004, Rodriguez insisted Miller to be credited as co-director, because he considered the visual style of Miller's comic art to be just as important as his own in the film. However, the Directors Guild of America would not allow it, citing that only "legitimate teams", e.g., the Wachowskis, could share the director's credit. Rodriguez chose to resign from the DGA, stating, "It was easier for me to quietly resign before shooting because otherwise I'd be forced to make compromises I was unwilling to make or set a precedent that might hurt the guild later on." By resigning from the DGA, Rodriguez was forced to relinquish his director's seat on the film John Carter of Mars for Paramount Pictures. Rodriguez had already signed on and had been announced as director of that film, planning to begin filming soon after completing Sin City.
Machete is a feature film directed by Rodriguez and released in September 2010. It is an expansion of a fake trailer Rodriguez directed for the 2007 film Grindhouse. It starred Danny Trejo as the title character. Trejo, Rodriguez's 2nd cousin, has worked with him in some of his other movies such as Desperado, From Dusk Till Dawn, Once Upon a Time in Mexico and Spy Kids, where Trejo first appeared as Machete. Although originally announced to be released direct-to-DVD as an extra on the Planet Terror DVD, the film was produced as a theatrical release.
In May 2007 it was announced that Rodriguez had signed on to direct a remake of Barbarella for a 2008 release. At the 2007 Comic-Con convention, actress Rosario Dawson announced that because of Barbarella, production of Sin City: A Dame to Kill For would be put on hold. She also announced that she would be playing an amazon in the Barbarella film. As of June 2008, plans to remake the film Barbarella with Rose McGowan as the lead have been delayed; the actress and director are instead remaking the film Red Sonja.
Rodriguez not only has the credits of producing, directing and writing his films, he also frequently serves as editor, director of photography, camera operator, steadicam operator, composer, production designer, visual effects supervisor, and sound editor on his films. This has earned him the nickname of "the one-man film crew". He abbreviates his numerous roles in his film credits; Once Upon a Time in Mexico, for instance, is "shot, chopped, and scored by Robert Rodriguez", and Sin City is "shot and cut by Robert Rodriguez".

 

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