The acclaimed filmmaker of Parallel Mothers and Pain and Glory says 'the story is very intimate.'

Hollywood's resident "zaddy" Pedro Pascal is leading what filmmaker Pedro Almodóvar is calling his "answer" to Brokeback Mountain alongside Ethan Hawke. Giddy up, cowboys!

In an interview with IndieWire, Almodóvar revealed new details on Strange Way of Life, a Western short film he plans to shoot in Spain's Almería region later this August with the two actors. "It could be like my answer to Brokeback Mountain," he said.

Almodóvar, after all, previously considered to direct 2005's Brokeback Mountain before Ang Lee stepped in. The Oscar-winning film starred Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal as sheep herders who strike up an affair in 1960s Wyoming. Now, Almodóvar has another opportunity to make a Western.

Hawke will play a sheriff, while Pascal plays another middle-aged gunslinger who lives on the opposite side of the desert. Pascal confirmed his involvement on Instagram last April when he shared video of Almodóvar talking about Strange Way of Life.

"One of them travels through the desert to find the other," Almodóvar prefaced to IndieWire. "There will be a showdown between them, but really the story is very intimate."

Ethan Hawke and Pedro Pascal
Ethan Hawke and Pedro Pascal will star in 'Strange Way of Life,' Pedro Almodovar's "answer" to 'Brokeback Mountain.'
| Credit: Tommaso Boddi/WireImage; Leon Bennett/Getty Images

Almodóvar said "you can guess" whether that intimacy means romance and noted "masculinity is one of the subjects of the movie." He's spoken in the past about how he would've approached Brokeback Mountain, should he have taken the reins when offered them by screenwriter Larry McMurtry.

The auteur told the Empire podcast in 2016 that he would've made the movie, based on the Annie Proulx short story of the same name, with "more sex, more sex."

"And it's not gratuitous," he clarified. "The Annie Proulx is about a physical relation, an animal relation, so sex is necessary because it is the body of the story."

"I was sure that I couldn't do it as physical as I wanted to," he told Vulture in 2019 about passing on the film. "Perhaps I will one day make a movie in English, but it will be with European money, then I can be as free as I am now."

Strange Way of Life, it seems, could be that movie.

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