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Gonsalvus - The Real Beauty and the Beast
Year: 2013
Run-Time: 1 x 50 min.

Directed by Julian Pölsler
Written by Julian Pölsler, Klaus Steindl, Andreas Sulzer

A co-production by Epo Film, Smithsonian Networks, ARTE and ORF
Available worldwide except for North America, Germany and France

Languages: German (ORIGINAL) , English (DUBBED) , French (DUBBED) , German (SUB TITLE)
Format: 16:9
sub title

Gonsalvus - The Real Beauty and the Beast

Die Schöne und das Biest - Die wahre Geschichte

From his birth in 1556 on Tenerife, Petrus Gonsalvus suffered from a rare condition now called «hypertrichosis» or «Ambras syndrome»: his body, including his face, was completely covered with hair, leading scholars to believe he was a talking ape. At the age of ten he was given as a gift to King Henry II of France, where he soon spoke fluent French, Italian and Latin and entertained the court with his brilliant conversation. The Queen decided to test if he really was human, and the pretty daughter of a court servant was bribed to marry Gonsalvus. But Petrus and Catherine finally fell in love and had several children; sadly, those who inherited their father's rare condition were given away to other noble courts in Europe. Meanwhile, the film meets Larry Gomez, a Mexican-American actor who lives with the same condition today, which science can now explain but cannot «cure».  Will he too find someone to share his life? «Gonsalvus - The Real Beauty and the Beast», like the 18th-century fairy-tale, is the archetypal story of how ignorance and cruelty can only be overcome by love.
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