LOS ANGELES, CA – Roberto Canessa has dedicated his life to sharing his incredible story of survival after a plane crash in the Andes mountains. His harrowing experience, which involved avalanches and resorting to eating human flesh, will be brought to the big screen in a new Netflix movie set to be released on January 4. The film, directed by J.A. Bayona, is expected to be a strong contender during awards season, including the Oscars.
Canessa, now 70 years old, is eager to see his story told once again, believing it still holds valuable lessons for future generations. He likens the challenges in life to climbing a personal mountain, a message he hopes to convey to those facing struggles today.
The film, titled “Society of the Snow,” focuses on the ordeal of the Uruguayan rugby team that crashed in the Andes in 1972. The story is based on a book by Uruguayan writer Pablo Vierci, who collected testimonies from various survivors. For Canessa, the title represents the bond that formed among the survivors when they realized they had been abandoned by society.
On October 13, 1972, a plane carrying members of the Old Christians rugby team crashed in the Andes, leaving the survivors stranded for 72 days. The extreme conditions and lack of rescue led to the deaths of several passengers, but ultimately 16 individuals, including Canessa, were rescued after a 10-day trek over the mountains into Chile.
The filming of “Society of the Snow” was grueling for the actors, who endured harsh conditions and extreme weight loss to accurately portray the survivors’ experience. Despite the challenges, the movie has garnered attention at various film festivals and award nominations, including being Spain’s official entry for the Oscars.
Canessa hopes the movie will prompt viewers to contemplate their approach to life’s obstacles, emphasizing the importance of resilience in the face of adversity. The incredible tale of survival continues to inspire and serve as a reminder of the strength of the human spirit.