Skip navigation

Tag Archives: The Animal in Hollywood

Benicio Del Toro

Actor Benicio Del Toro, right, shakes hands with Cuban actor Jorge Perrugoria before accepting the Cuban Cultural Government Award Tomas Gutierrez Alea in Havana, Thursday, July 30, 2009. Del Toro accepted a new Cuban government award for international artists for his full body of work, which includes the starring role in “Che” the director Steven Soderbergh’s film that wowed audiences in Havana earlier this year. Miguel Barnet, President of The National Union of Writers and Artists of Cuba, looks on at center. (AP Photo/Franklin Reyes)


HAVANA — Benicio del Toro accepted a new Cuban government award for international artists at a ceremony in Havana on Thursday, while Bill Murray entertained a small audience by crooning from “As Time Goes By.

Fellow actors Robert Duval and James Caan were also on hand as the National Union of Writers and Artists of Cuba gave Puerto Rican-born del Toro the first Tomas Gutierrez Alea Prize for his career body of work, including the lead in “Che.”

Steven Soderbergh’s two-part, 4 1/2-hour biopic on Argentine-born revolutionary Ernesto “Che” Guevara, who helped Fidel Castro take power in Cuba in 1959, was a hit on the island, often showing in theaters that had not been refurbished since the 1950s.

Murray wowed union members packed into a room behind the group’s main headquarters, grabbing a microphone, singing and then jokingly passing around a baseball cap to collect tips for the piano player.

He said later he was most-taken with another time warp-like aspect of Cuba.  


James Caan was a close friend.  I was Jimmy’s connection and protection in the L.A.Mob.   I partied with Jimmy many times at  the Playboy Mansion . He even testified at my Federal grand jury . I mention this and much, much, more in my book  “The Animal in Hollywood”  
Anthony Fiato