Kate del Castillo releases doc ‘The Day I Met El Chapo’

Kate del Castillo
Updated 21 October 2017
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Kate del Castillo releases doc ‘The Day I Met El Chapo’

NEW YORK: Kate del Castillo says she just “wants closure” and is hoping to get it from the release of her new three-part docuseries “The Day I Met El Chapo,” now on Netflix.
The documentary tells del Castillo’s version of events surrounding a 2015 meeting with Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, a Mexican drug lord who at the time was hiding from authorities. He is since been captured and extradited to the US and is awaiting trial.
When del Castillo met with Guzman, she said it was with the intent to make a film about his life. She brought along two film producers and actor Sean Penn, who went on to write an article for Rolling Stone magazine about the encounter.
Since then, del Castillo and Penn have clashed over their accounts of what happened. Del Castillo also suggests that Penn tipped off authorities to the meeting which ultimately led to Guzman’s capture.
Penn, through publicist Mark Fabiani, describes del Castillo’s efforts as “nothing but a cheap National Enquirer-esque tale spun by a delusional person whose hunger for fame is both tawdry and transparent.”
In a recent interview with the Associated Press, del Castillo talked about the film, Sean Penn and moving forward. Answers have been edited for clarity and brevity.
AP: What do you hope to clear up with “The Day I Met El Chapo”?
Del Castillo: Well, first of all (the media) sexualized the whole ... that thing ... that I had a sexual relationship with Mr. Guzman, that I was infatuated with him, that he was infatuated with me ... There have been a lot of men that have visited him and many other fugitives or drug lords and they say, “Oh my God, how smart, how intelligent, how brave of him.” But if it is a woman then they sexualize you.
AP: Your correspondence with Guzman began with what seemed like a complimentary tweet about him. How would you describe him now?
Del Castillo: I think we all have good and bad inside of us but we cannot forget who he is. He is a criminal. ... I saw him and he was a gentleman. He was very nice with me, with us. He loves his family very much so, so that is part of the interesting thing that I want to show if I ever do the movie, his story life, what happens inside that mind. What is going on in his head? How a little kid from ... Sinaloa becomes this No. 1 drug lord. ... Who helps them? Because he is not there by himself, right?
AP: You and Sean Penn have different accounts of what happened.
Del Castillo: He has a perception of what happened and I have another perception of what happened. ... We tried to reach out to (Penn) many times in the documentary and he decided to ignore the requests and then he watched it and he did not like it and now he wants to say and be a part of it and sorry. He is too late. (Note: Penn says it is common to ask to see a cut of a project before agreeing to participate. After viewing it, Penn asked for a change which did not happen.)
AP: After you met with Guzman and before he was captured and Sean Penn’s article was published, what happened?
Del Castillo: When we got back, my nightmare started because I had to work for Sean literally translating his article, sending it to Senor Guzman, who is a fugitive by then so he is not answering all the time and Sean is screaming that he has a deadline and El Chapo had approval. ... I never saw the last version of it ... and that is where ... we had so many fights. (Note: Penn says del Castillo is adding “new salacious allegations to her interview repertoire for the sole purpose of attracting attention for her documentary and for herself.”)
AP: You now live in the US and have n ot been back to Mexico in two years. Do you feel you can not go back?
Del Castillo: Well, legally I can go back because the investigation is over but they opened a new investigation and then they closed it and opened a new one. (There is an investigation into whether del Castillo received money from Guzman to finance the movie she wanted to make. She denies this.) My lawyers are advising me not to go yet.
AP: Has this affected your career?
Del Castillo: My whole life has been put on hold for two years. Thank God for ‘Ingobernable,’ the series with Netflix. If it was not for them, I have not worked for two years and I have been paying for lawyers in the United States and Mexico. I am an actress but I am not Angelina Jolie. Sometimes you work, sometimes you do not work so much. It is been hard.


Prince Harry raises Invictus Games flag over Sydney Harbor

Updated 19 October 2018
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Prince Harry raises Invictus Games flag over Sydney Harbor

  • The sporting event, founded by Prince Harry in 2014, starts on Saturday
  • Prince Harry and his wife, American former actress Meghan Markle, will attend the opening and closing games ceremonies.

SYDNEY: Prince Harry scaled the Sydney Harbor Bridge on Friday to raise a flag marking the arrival of the Invictus Games, his brainchild and the focus of his current royal tour of Australia and the South Pacific.
The sporting event, founded by Harry in 2014, starts on Saturday. It gives sick and injured military personnel and veterans the opportunity to compete in sports such as wheelchair basketball and to find inspiration to recover.
The fact that the Duchess of Sussex never planned to climb the world’s tallest steel arch bridge with her husband had fueled speculation that she is pregnant. The speculation was confirmed on Monday when Harry and the former Meghan Markle announced that their first child is due in the northern spring.
Harry, Prime Minister Scott Morrison, four members of the Australian team and the widow of an Australian veteran climbed more than 1,000 steps up the back of an arch to raise the Invictus Games Sydney 2018 flag.
“The Sydney Harbor Bridge is an Australian icon and I can think of no better place to raise the ... flag,” Morrison said in a statement.
During the descent, Harry hugged fellow climber Gwen Cherne, a games ambassador whose husband Peter Cafe, a veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan, took his own life in February.
“We were talking about mental health and really working on changing the way that our global community looks at mental health and deals with it,” Cherne said later.
The flag will fly 134 meters (440 feet) above Sydney Harbor until the games close on Oct. 27.
Harry and his American former actress wife will attend the opening and closing games ceremonies. Around 500 athletes from 18 nations will compete in venues around Sydney.
The couple earlier Friday walked barefoot on Bondi Beach to meet a group of surfers focused on mental wellbeing.
The group, OneWave, meet weekly in an “anti-bad vibe circle” on the sand.
While the group dressed in loud and outrageous fluorescent outfits, Harry and Meghan were more subdued, but their message to the group was clear.
“They’re super passionate about mental health. They are showing that mental health does not discriminate,” OneWave co-founder Grant Trebilco said.
Charlotte Connell, a OneWave member, said Harry spoke of his own experiences seeking counselling more than 20 years after his mother, Princess Diana, died in a car crash in a Paris tunnel in 1997 when he was aged 12.
“Harry said it took him not six months, but 18 months to find the right person to speak to. ‘You’re not going to find the right person to speak to straight away,’” Connell said.
Both Harry and Meghan used exercise as a way of keeping well, Connell said.
“Even in her jetlagged state, she got up in the morning and did yoga at 4.30am,” Connell said.
“She said it’s so good for healing her mind,” Connell added.
After Bondi, the couple made an unannounced visit to Macarthur Girls High School in Parramatta in central Sydney.
The shrieking students gave the couple a rock star welcome to a school assembly.
“When they walked in, I felt like my heart stopped. Their presence just made everyone shocked,” 15-year-old student Rhiannon said.
The couple finished their day’s events with formal meetings with Morrison and opposition leader Bill Shorten.
Harry and Meghan will also visit Fiji, Tonga and New Zealand during their 16-day tour.