2015 | Docuseries | 8 x 45′, 8 x 52′ |  The Cuba Libre Story (2016) on IMDb  |

The Cuba Libre Story

Cuba – the island where dreams clash. It was the gateway to the New World, the port of call for the American underworld, a crossroads for drug smuggeling. It has brought us cigars, sugar and rum. And a Socialist Revolution: Cuba stands for schools for everybody, and an eternal struggle for freedom. Cuba may seem synonymous with Fidel Castro and Che Guevara, but its history was shaped by adventurer Christopher Columbus, freedom fighter José Martí, Dictator Fulgenico Batista, Mafia Boss Meyer Lansky and many others.

For the first time ever, the Russian state film archives of Krasnogorsk, the Red Army and KGB’s film archives and the Cuban State Film Archive ICAIC have granted us access to their Cuban treasures. We tell Cuban history from a transnational perspective. All footage has been newly scanned, digitally restored and re-mastered, from the Spanish-American War of 1898, which was the first war in history ever to be filmed.

“The Cuba Libre Story” weaves together over 50 exclusive interviews with the most important experts and eyewitnesses of Cuban history – broth from within and outside the island. We bring together both followers and opponents of Fidel Castro and his predecessor Fulgenico Batista. We hear from Juan Antonio Rodriguez Menier, former chief of Castro’s secret service and Nikolai Leonov, head of the KGB in Latin America from 1953 onwards (and Vladimir Putin’s former boss and mentor), from Marita Lorenz, Castro’s former lover and Carlos Calvo, Castro’s former bodyguard. We hear from Cynthia Duncan, granddaughter of Mafia boss Meyer Lansky, Leonardo Padura, Cuba’s most famous novelist and Egon Krenz, East Germany’s last head of state and personal friend of the Castro brothers.

Bettina Offermann | distribution@looks.film

Executive Producers
Gunnar Dedio | LOOKSfilm
Grégory Schnebelen | Interscoop
Igor Prokopenko | Format TV

A co-production by
LOOKSfilm, ZDFinfo, Interscoop, Format TV, TVC, INA

Authors & Directors
Emmanuel Amara, Kai Christiansen, Florian Dedio

Creative Producers
Regina Bouchehri, Louis-David Delahaye, Birgit Rasch, Olga Zatulkina