The French film, la Cage Dorée (The Gilded Cage), directed by the young Franco-Portuguese director, Ruben Alves and which has a cast of well-known Portuguese and French actors makes its premiere in Portugal today — August 1st. Filmed on location in Paris and at Graham’s Quinta dos Malvedos in the Douro Valley, the film has been a box-office hit in France, having been seen by over one million cinema goers since it premiered there on April 24th. The producers of the film are hopeful that this success will be mirrored in Portugal.
The charming comedy revolves around the story of a young Portuguese couple who emigrate to France in the early 1970s in search of a better life. Several decades later, they inherit a Douro quinta and this is where Quinta dos Malvedos becomes, itself, one of the stars of the film. Following much exploration in the Douro early in 2012 in search of a suitable location to shoot the Portuguese scenes of the film, the director immediately fell in love with Malvedos (after visiting many other quintas) and was thrilled when the Symington family agreed to his request to film there. During a week in July 2012, Malvedos was a hive of activity as the cast of French and Portuguese actors played out their roles amidst one of the most spectacular settings in the Douro Valley.
Leading Portuguese actor, Joaquim de Almeida, who enjoys a successful career in Hollywood, and the popular actress, Rita Blanco, star in the roles of José and Maria (he a builder and she a concierge). They are supported by a varied cast of other Portuguese, as well as French and Franco-Portuguese actors such as Chantal Lauby, Jacqueline Corado and Barbara Cabrita.
Besides Malvedos, Graham’s is also represented in the film by one of its landmark wines — Six Grapes, the Port served by José and Maria when they entertain guests at their Parisian home.
On July 22nd, the film producers organized a first screening in Portugal and naturally they chose a Douro venue in which to do so — the town of Lamego. To give them a fitting welcome on their return to the region, the Symington family organized a reception in the attractive surroundings of the Museu do Douro (the Port Wine Museum) in Régua during which a tutored tasting of Graham’s Ports was provided for the film cast, crew and all assembled guests. Besides Graham’s delicious Six Grapes, the superb Graham’s 2001 Quinta dos Malvedos Vintage Port was also much appreciated by all.