Director Robert Rodriguez unleashes edgy ‘Machete’

One of the deciding moments in the making of the neo-exploitation, ultra-violent-comedy thriller "Machete" came when star-to-be Danny Trejo was doing an autograph signing in England. "These guys came up and they had pictures of ’Machete’ tattooed on their backs," Trejo said. "Talk about responsibility."

"He took pictures and e-mailed them to me," laughed director Robert Rodriguez. "I said, ’That’s insane.’ Danny said, ’We’ve got to make the movie now."

Up until then, "Machete" — which opens Friday and co-stars Jessica Alba, Lindsay Lohan, Robert De Niro, Don Johnson, Michelle Rodriguez, Jeff Fahey, Cheech Marin and Steven Seagal — was just a counterfeit trailer tacked onto another exploitation movie, "Grindhouse" (2007), the Rodriguez-Quentin Tarantino homage to trashy ’70s drive-in movies. In between the two "features" that made up "Grindhouse" — "Death Proof" and "Planet Terror" — were trailers for equally cheesy-albeit-imaginary features, including "Werewolf Women of the SS," ”Hobo With a Shotgun" and "Machete," the story of a Mexican federale who becomes embroiled in the cross-border drug trade.

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Filmmaking, New Movies


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