Penélope Cruz has portrayed many characters throughout her 20-year film and television career. But as one of the most objectively hottest women on the planet, many of her roles have taken full advantage of her sublime genetics. Now, Cruz is starring in a new movie that renders her nearly unrecognizable from her usual sexpot styling — in Official Competition, her character is a curly redhead, with hair so big that she’s grazing Heaven’s pearly gates. Cruz also wears thick black plastic glasses, with equally thick black eyeliner behind them, serving the ultimate middle-aged batty artist look.
Official Competition stars Cruz as Lola Cuevas. She’s a brilliant filmmaker who demands perfection but goes about it with anxious energy that comes dangerously close to derailing the process. It’s the mad genius archetype, right down to her black turtleneck, but with fabulous auburn hair piled up in a messy bun. She stars opposite Antonio Banderas, who plays the movie-within-the-movie’s hunky heartthrob, with little desire to do much except bat his lashes in front of the camera. Clearly, the film is not-so-subtly commenting on directors who use Cruz as slightly more than a sexy ornament; she’s given the working woman treatment, complete with vintage t-shirts and a gaze that always looks upwards, as though she’s processing storyboards or dialogue in her head at all times.
The movie hasn’t been given a United States release date, but it is likely to get picked up for a premiere at the Venice Film Festival in September. Check out the trailer below via Variety.