'La Vampira de Barcelona' sheds new light on urban legend
Raval-based film shares the untold story of Enriqueta Martí
The black myth of Enriqueta Martí or, the 'Vampira de Barcelona' (Vampire of Barcelona) has been a hot topic in Barcelona's pop culture for many years.
A woman who was once thought to have been one of the most notorious killers in the history of the city will be the subject of a new film directed by Lluís Danés, filmed in a warehouse in Martorell, northwest of Barcelona.
A Dark History
At the beginning of the 20th century, Enriqueta Martí shocked the country when she was arrested as the kidnapper of a young missing girl, Teresita Guitart. Following her arrest, police claimed to have found a lengthy history of human trafficking and murder in relation to the unsolved disappearances of dozens of children in Barcelona's Raval neighborhood.
Martí was accused of running a brothel for the wealthy classes of Barcelona to participate in pedophilic activity with her alleged victims and was also believed to have created witch-doctor tinctures for her clients with the remains of the children.
Shedding New Light
In recent years, various researchers have found evidence that shows Martí less as a serial killer and more of a mentally unwell victim of a media and police frenzy attempting to cover up a large pedophilia ring.
Danés draws parallels between the warped story of Martí with modern life — "fake news was born then, not now."
Filling the Role
Nora Navas, the actress who plays the main character, expresses how Martí became a character she "ended up loving."
A woman whose story has evolved through time, Navas says the role, "makes you want to take advantage [of it], to pay tribute to all the female victims."
Though Danés says that Martí was "not a saint," he is adamant that she ultimately was "a scapegoat," and hopes to reflect what he says is an ever-present power dynamic between the press and the authorities in the work.
Filming concludes this Saturday and is expected for release in the fall of 2020.