City of God, 10 years on

Aug 06, 2013


Ten years after a Rio de Janeiro slum called Cidade de Deus (City of God) burst into the world's consciousness with the hit film of the same name, very little has changed for the residents and the actors have enjoyed mixed fortunes, writes Donna Bowater.

In one of the ubiquitous street-side bars in the west of Rio de Janeiro, Leandro Firmino sits sipping water dressed in the shirt of his beloved Flamengo football team. In Cidade de Deus, the community where he grew up, he knows almost all who pass by and gives them a thumbs up or a wave.

He could be any of the million who live in the city's favelas. But his famously haunting eyes are unmistakeable.

A decade after playing the terrifying drug lord Li'l Ze in the unexpected box-office success, City of God, he shows few other signs of the fame he achieved back then.

Read the full article at BBC.co.uk


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