Yalitza Aparicio (Roma) is adding more titles to her Hollywood resume. The Oscar-nominated actress will take on the role of executive producer for the first time in her career with the sweatshop thriller Bonded.
According to Variety, producers of the Oscar-nominated Argentina, 1985 are behind the film, which will star Latine talent like Diego Calva (Babylon), Alfredo Castro (From Afar), and Paulina Gaitán (Narcos). Mexican filmmaker Luis Mandoki (Innocent Voices) is also a producer.
Bonded is inspired by the El Monte California sweatshop raid of 1995. It follows a young Mexican boy who aspires to become a soccer star. Those dreams are dashed, however, when he is smuggled across the border and sold to a sweatshop in Los Angeles. The film will make its world premiere at the Mammoth Film Festival on March 5, 2023.
“Emotionally, it’s very impactful,” Aparicio said. “The script is incredible. It’s a movie that keeps you present, always wondering what’s going to happen next. I’m proud to be part of such an important and thought-provoking film.”
Producer Axel Kuschevatzky added: “What makes Bonded unique is that it’s a social drama wrapped in a genre movie with gripping horror and action sequences that keeps you on the edge of your seat. At the same time, as a Latino, it’s hard not to think about how many more cases like Bonded are out there and what we’re going to do about it.”
During the 1995 raid, police found 72 Thai nationals who had been brought into the U.S. without documentation. The group was being held against their will in a sweatshop and forced to work sewing garments 16 hours a day, seven days a week.
Aparicio will next be seen in Midnight Family, the first Spanish-language series for Apple TV+. In 2019, she was named one of Time magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in the World.