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Bratt brings family to SF premiere

The Associated Press
Friday January 11, 2002

SAN FRANCISCO — Actor Benjamin Bratt took his whole family out to the movies Wednesday for the local premiere of “Pinero,” which tells the story of hard-living Puerto Rican poet-playwright Miguel Pinero. 

Nearly 700 people attended the two screenings of the new Miramax film by director Leon Ichaso. The arty “Pinero,” shot in 28 days in New York and Puerto Rico, also stars Rita Moreno, Talisa Soto, Mandy Patinkin and Giancarlo Esposito. Moreno and Soto arrived arm-in-arm with Bratt at Wednesday’s screening. 

Bratt, 38, says he immersed himself in Pinero’s work to prepare for the role. A thin, bearded and haggard-looking Bratt in the movie spends a lot of time chain-smoking, snorting cocaine and shooting heroin. 

He says it wasn’t tough to leave his on-screen persona behind. 

“You just cut the hair and take a shower,” he joked. 

Pinero, who did time in Sing Sing prison for drug dealing and petty theft, turned his prison experiences into 1974’s Tony-Award nominated play “Short Eyes.” He died in 1988. 

Bratt’s brother, sisters and mother attended Wednesday’s screening of the film, which opened in New York and Los Angeles last month. 

The actor recently bought a house in San Francisco, his hometown.