The story takes place in the ’70s, which gives it a nostalgic touch, and focuses on Howard Beale, a TV news presenter who after 25 years is fired due to the abrupt drop in ratings. To his desperation, he makes a macabre announcement that raises the channel’s ratings and leads the executives to give him a second chance. We talk with Bordón.
Journalist: The film takes place in times when power was in the big television networks and Hollywood studios. Today the world is different, that of networks and platforms.
Cesar Bordon: This is a theater adaptation based on the movie but it is very updated. Today TV is no longer the quintessential medium as in the film, in fact I think it is one of the most obsolete media. The president of the company says in his text that he enjoys the programs but that ideas have many ways to be distributed, and there he alludes to new media such as platforms and networks. In the show several languages are combined, it exceeds a single point of view and when the public sits in their seats they will see a large screen that is TV, but many others that are accomplice cameras and tell different aspects of the story and the characters. . It’s not a musical, it’s not a filmed work, you can see on the screen what you can’t see from the audience.
Q.: What topics does the show address?
BC: It talks about the manipulation of the public mind, about how anything can be shamelessly sold. There is a criticism of how idols or celebrities live, that they do not show reality as it is, in fact none of us does it on Instagram. I get up in the morning in flip flops and I don’t post that, I show reality as it suits me. There is an ethical debate that has to do with what to show as news despite the fact that it can ruin someone’s life. There is something emblematic of the actor in my case, whether to do what he sells or what gives prestige and quality, and the latter has given me results over time. Fame is fleeting and prestige eternal. The media gobble up a story that tomorrow may be another, that’s what Network focuses on as well. Puts an ethical rod to draw a dispute between the characters.
Q.: How are the film and the play similar?
BC: It tells stories of the power of those who command and control the world, from putting on news to selling medicine, saying what to eat, what to vote for and even lowering a Pope. It is still an era in which communication is the leader on the things that rule the world. Years ago if the newspaper published it, it was considered true, now there is more debate about fake news. And all of this leads to someone being sentenced in advance by society and even exerting pressure on the judges. I refer to what communication sentences.
Q.: Is it musical, is it theater, is it audiovisual?
BC: It is not a musical, it has music, it has sarcastic humor, it is a satire on the media and it handles a very delicate and subtle point that people can laugh or feel touched. He has black humor, pathetic, about reality. It has a unique technological display that makes it an impressive show.
Q.: The film is excellent. Would you say this show tops it?
BC: It surpasses the film in terms of modernity and freshness. The film is fantastic, but it has things of style and time that have been updated here. My character went from buying a huge chain to CEO, who makes decisions about what he thinks the company wants. He lives and dies by the success or failure of business, he has all the bragging about success and depression about failure.
Q.: How is the return to large-scale shows in the first post-pandemic holidays?
BC: It is very commendable to produce in a market that is small in relation to the big bets, this is one. We hope that the demand and the need for the public to go out will increase. People want great shows in Buenos Aires, there is avidity, there is internal tourism. There will always be more classic theater but sometimes it is less required than these great display bets. This is something unique.