This is not the first time British director Ridley Scott will be in Andalucía. The first time was back in 2013 as he scouted out locations for the filming of 'Exodus: Gods and Kings', settling on the desert locations of the 'spaghetti westerns' around Almeria after travelling around much of the region by helicopter.
In December, he was back, this time his helicopter headed in the direction of Cadiz in search of filming locations. All that was known at the time was that he was looking for a place with a Mexican vibe. It seems now that he has found such a place in the city of Malaga, specifically at the former provincial prison in the Cruz de Humilladero area of the city which has for many years been abandoned.
This prison will become a Mexican jail for the filming of 'The Cartel', a thriller about the 'narco wars' between the USA and Mexico, according to SUR's sources close to the project.
Ridley Scott, who will be launching 'Alien: Covenant' in May, visited in December and gave it the thumbs up to be the location for a high-security institution where a renowned drug baron will live in luxury and continue to run his operations while evading justice in the United States.
The story is inspired by the life of Joaquín 'el Chapo' Guzmán and his first escape from prison in 2001.
The new film by the director of 'Blade Runner' and 'The Martian' will chronicle the story of DEA agent Art Keller and drug baron Adan Berrera. Negotiations are ongoing with Leonardo DiCaprio, with whom Scott previously worked on 'Body of Lies', for the Oscar winner to play Keller.
In the last few weeks, preproduction for 'The Cartel' has advanced significantly, not only with the announcement of the Malaga location, but also with Scott returning to Spain at the end of January to visit the Coronel Maté de Colmenar Viejo base in Madrid where filming, including the use of military vehicles and helicopters, is expected to take place.
It is also known that the director had been searching for a town with a church, possibly in Cadiz province, to be a typical Mexican 'pueblo'.
Filming is expected to start in the summer under the supervision of the Malaga Film Office, but fans will have to wait to find out if Leonardo DiCaprio will be coming to Andalucía.