December 7, 2011, 8:40 P.M.

The Ray Stark Family Theatre, SCA 108, George Lucas Building, USC School of Cinematic Arts Complex, 900 W. 34th Street, Los Angeles, CA 90007


Outside the Box [Office], Outsider Pictures and JumpCut invite you to a special preview screening of

José & Pilar

Directed by Miguel Goncalves Mendes
Produced by Miguel Goncalves Mendes, Augustin Almodovar and Fernando Mereilles

8:40 P.M. on Wednesday, December 7th, 2011
Followed by a Q&A with Miguel Goncalves Mendes

The Ray Stark Family Theatre
George Lucas Building, SCA 108
900 W. 34th Street, Los Angeles, CA 90007

Portugal’s Official Submission for the Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film

About José & Pilar

A deeply moving story about love, loss, and literature. It illustrates the loving relationship between José Saramago, the Nobel-laureate Portuguese novelist, and his wife, Pilar del Rio and their whirlwind life of international travel, his passion for completing his last masterpiece “The Elephant’s Journey,” and how their love quietly sustains them throughout.

José & Pilar pulls back the curtain on the hidden Saramago and unravels any preconceived notions about him while proving that genius and simplicity are indeed compatible. The film is a funny and touching portrait on the endurance of the artistic spirit. A glimpse into the life of one of the greatest creators of the 20th Century and shows us that, as Saramago says, “There is always another way to say everything.”

Provided courtesy of Outsider Pictures and JumpCut. Not Rated. Running time: 117 minutes. In Portuguese and Spanish, with English subtitles.

To learn more about the film and to view the trailer, click here.


About the Guest

Miguel Goncalves Mendes (Director/Producer)

Miguel Goncalves Mendes was born in 1978 in Covilha, Portugal. He received his BA in cinema from the School Institute of Theater in Film, in Lisbon, 2005.  In 2002, he founded the production company, JumpCut, which developed different activities in theater and audiovisual areas.  He is an award-winning director and producer of the following productions: José and Pilar, Autografia, and D. Nieves.

Filmmaker Statement

I was always a huge fan of José Saramago and became more and more curious about what life must be like for a Nobel-laureate novelist. So, I wrote Saramago a letter asking if I could make a documentary about his life. At first, he refused saying he valued his privacy and felt that he led such a simple life, that it would be of no interest to anyone. But then after some consideration, he agreed to let me start shooting his public events.

I was very discreet, eager to pull back the curtain on the life of this amazing man, a pop star in his own right. After some time, José and Pilar (his equally amazing wife) forgot about the cameras. And over the course of four years, I filmed them, shared meals with them, plane trips all over the world, and their life that they graciously allowed me to document. It was a life changing experience and one I will always treasure.

-- Miguel Goncalves Mendes, Director

About Outside the Box [Office]

Outside the Box [Office] is a weekly showcase for upcoming releases highlighting world cinema, documentary and independent film titles. Recognizing a need for greater diversity on campus, the series will draw from around the globe to present movies that may challenge, inspire or simply entertain. The weekly screenings will be on Wednesday and Sunday nights (and other select dates, as they arise) in the School of Cinematic Arts Complex, George Lucas Building.

To view the calendar of screenings, click here.

Check-In & Reservations

This screening is free of charge and open to the public. Please bring a valid USC ID or print out of your reservation confirmation, which will automatically be sent to your e-mail account upon successfully making an RSVP through this website. Doors will open at 8:30 P.M.

All SCA screenings are OVERBOOKED to ensure seating capacity in the theater, therefore seating is not guaranteed based on RSVPs. The RSVP list will be checked in on a first-come, first-served basis until the theater is full. Once the theater has reached capacity, we will no longer be able to admit guests, regardless of RSVP status.


The USC School of Cinematic Arts is located at 900 W. 34th St., Los Angeles, CA 90007. Parking passes may be purchased for $8.00 at USC Entrance Gate #5, located at the intersection of W. Jefferson Blvd. & McClintock Avenue. We recommend parking in outdoor Lot M or V, or Parking Structure D, at the far end of 34th Street. Please note that Parking Structure D cannot accommodate tall vehicles such as SUVs. Free street parking is also available along Jefferson Blvd.

Contact Information

Name: Alessandro Ago