To follow in the footsteps of Román Chalbaud, we must review the history of Venezuelan cinema, theater and television since the middle of the last century. In each of the mediums, the artist from Merida carried out works of great creative value that he knew how to alternate with his performance as a cultural manager.
Before listing some of the most significant, it is necessary to summarize his life.
He was born on October 10, 1931, in the Andean capital. Installed in Caracas, he trained at the Experimental Theater. At the age of 20, he was assistant director to the Mexican Víctor Uchurrúa, in the film “Six Months of Life,” starring Amador Bendayán. In 1953, he repeated the experience in “Luz de áramo”.
Three years later he founded the company Allegro Film SA, together with Hilario González, with which he carried out his first project: “Caín Adolescente”. In 1962, he was the promoter of El Teatro de Arte de Caracas and, in September 1967, he did the same with El Nuevo Grupo, alongside José Ignacio Cabrujas, Elías Pérez Borjas and Isaac Chocrón, his childhood friend, author of the work “Asia and the Far East”, with which the Alberto de Paz y Mateos room premiered.
He worked as artistic director at Televisora Nacional and, at the end of the 60s, he joined the payroll of RCTV.
In 1980, he traveled to New York to take a directing course with the legendary Lee Strasberg. Upon returning, he held the presidency of the National Association of Cinematographic Authors and the general direction of the National Cinematheque. He received the Andrés Bello Order in First Class and the Order of Merit also in First Class, in addition to national awards in Cinema and Theater.
His last television stage was spent in the Venevisión studios, before making the decision to move away from the small screen. She only agreed to return to produce and direct the telenovela “Amores de barrio interior”, when she was 73 years old. This work is part of the prolific legacy that she left when she left, on September 12, in her penthouse in Plaza La Estrella, in San Bernardino.
Now, the list of some of the most important works of Román Chalbaud.
1. Movie “Adolescent Cain” (1959). In his debut as a director, he also wrote the script based on his own work, of the same name, born four years earlier. For the soundtrack he had two geniuses: José Ángel Lamas and Eduardo Serrano. In the cast: Carlota Ureta Zamorano, Milagros del Valle, Edgar Jiménez, Orángel Delfín, Enrique Alzugaray, Rafael Briceño and Pedro Hurtado.
2. Telenovela “Sacrifice of a Woman” (1972). She marked the movements of Doris Wells and Raúl Amundaray, in the 120 chapters of the story, adapted by Carlos Romero, from a creation by Inés Rodena.
3. Movie “When I want to cry I don't cry” (1973). He participated as a scriptwriter alongside Miguel Otero Silva, author of the original work, and Mauricio Walerstein, the director. The interpretation of the Victorinos corresponded to Orlando Urdaneta, Pedro Laya and Valentín Trujillo.
4. Movie “The Burning of Judas” (1974). He fulfilled the double role of screenwriter and director, in the film starring Miguelángel Landa, which participated in the Ninth Moscow International Film Festival that same year.
5. Miniseries “Boves, the grouse” (1974). José Ignacio Cabrujas adapted the work of the same name by Francisco Herrera Luque and he directed the three episodes that lasted. Gustavo Rodríguez's performance was described as masterful; He was accompanied by María Eugenia Domínguez, Chony Fuentes and Marisela Berti.
6. Movie “The Smoking Fish” (1977). He co-wrote the script with José Ignacio Cabrujas before directing. Hilda Vera, Orlando Urdaneta, Miguelángel Landa, Rafael Briceño and Haydée Balza led the cast of the plot set in a brothel in La Guaira. In 2016, 41 experts convened by the National Cinematheque chose it as the best film in the history of national cinema.
7. Telenovela “La hija de Juana Crespo” (1977). Salvador Garmendia, José Ignacio Cabrujas and Ibsen Martínez wrote the 100 chapters of an essential title in the movement called “the cultural soap opera.” Hilda Vera, Mayra Alejandra and José Luis Rodríguez formed the stellar trio.
8. Movie “Carmen, the 16-year-old” (1978). He developed the script with José Ignacio Cabrujas and Gustavo Michelena, based on the novel by Próspero Mérimée and the opera by Georges Bizet. He also directed Mayra Alejandra and Miguelángel Landa, who carried the main burden of the film set to music by Los Antaños del Stadium.
9. Series “Piel de zapa” (1978). Salvador Garmendia tropicalized the story of the Frenchman Honoret de Balzac, in which the protagonist makes a pact with the devil, in exchange for him fulfilling his wishes. Raúl Amundaray shared the 47 episodes with Mayra Alejandra and Pierina España.
10. Movie “The Flock of Angels” (1979). José Ignacio Cabrujas was in charge of the script and Arnaldo Limansky was in charge of the production of the film inspired by the crisis of the educational system. In the cast: Mary Soliani, Pilar Romero, Alicia Plaza, Hugo Martínez, Hilda Vera, Rafael Briceño and Miguelángel Landa.
11. Miniseries “The murder of Delgado Chalbaud” (1979). Based on the historical event, José Ignacio Cabrujas developed the script that Chalbaud produced and directed. Two chapters were enough for television historians to consider it a gem. Critics wildly applauded Raúl Amundaray's work.
12. Movie “Crab” (1982). After the impact of the book “Four crimes, four powers”, published by criminologist Fermín Mármol León, Juan Carlos Gené wrote the script for the first installment dedicated to the famous “case of the Vega child” or economic power. Miguelángel Landa, América Alonso, Carlos Márquez, Rafael Briceño and Domingo del Castillo played the main characters.
13. Movie “Crab II” (1984). The script for the second installment, based on ecclesiastical power, was entrusted to César Miguel Rondón. Miguelángel Landa repeated, this time accompanied by Eduardo Serrano, Ramón Hinojosa, Rafael Briceño and Orlando Urdaneta.
14. Movie “The Black Sheep” (1987). She co-wrote the script with David Suárez. Miguelángel Landa was not part of the cast, but was in charge of the production. Performers: Carlos Montilla, Eva Blanco, Arturo Calderón, Javier Zapata and Zamira Segura. There are those who claim that this is Chalbaud's best feature film.
15. Movie “Fire Knives” (1990). Once again he teamed up with David Suárez, to cover his work “Todo bicho de uña”. She directed Miguelángel Landa, Marisela Berti, Gabriel Fernández and Javier Zapata.
16. Movie “Pandemonium, the capital of hell” (1997). She worked on the script with David Suárez and with Orlando Urdaneta, protagonist of the story in which Amalia Pérez Díaz, José Luis Márquez, Elaiza Gil and Miguelángel Landa participated. The film entered competition at the 1997 San Sebastián International Film Festival.
17. Telenovela “War of Women” (2001). Her niece Mónica Montañés and César Miguel Rondón shaped the 141 episodes of the story headed by Gaby Espino and Jorge Reyes, who faced the sex video scandal with Roxana Díaz during the recordings.
18. Telenovela “Las González” (2002). Again she directed a plot written by César Miguel Rondón and Mónica Montañés, also starring Gaby Espino and Jorge Reyes. It was his last job at La Colina.
19. Telenovela “Amores de barrio interior” (2004). She accepted the commitment to direct the story created by Rodolfo Santana, for Venezolana de Televisión, inspired by the polarization of the first years of Hugo Chávez's government. Jennifer Flores and Anthony Gómez led the cast.
20. Movie “El Caracazo” (2005). He fulfilled the triple role of producer, director and screenwriter, in the feature film financed by Conac. The cast stood out: Fernando Carrillo, La Beba Rojas, Yanis Chimaras, Henry Galué, mimí lazo, Pedro Lander and Simón Pestana. It was his first approach to a historical event on the big screen.