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Antonio Banderas: 2017 Heart Attack ‘One of the Best Things That Ever Happened’

Banderas is currently in theaters for the second time this year with "Puss in Boots: The Last Wish."

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - DECEMBER 13: Antonio Banderas attends the "Puss In Boots: The Last Wish" World Premiere at Frederick P. Rose Hall, Jazz at Lincoln Center on December 13, 2022 in New York City. (Photo by Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images)

Antonio Banderas

Getty Images

Post heart attack, Antonio Banderas is relishing “Being Alive.”

Banderas, currently starring in a production of the Stephen Sondheim musical “Company” in Madrid, is making the press rounds in support of his new film “Puss in Boots: The Last Wish,” and he’s discussing his 2017 heart attack in-depth for the first time.

“I realized that it probably was one of the best things that ever happened in my life because the things that were not important and I was worried every day about them, meaningless,” he told Page Six.

“I was like, why am I worried about that if I’m going to die?” he said. “I knew always [that I was going to die], but now I know. I’ve seen it right here.”

“Puss in Boots” also deals with mortality, as Banderas’ titular character discovers he’s down to one of his nine lives and embarks upon a quest to discover the Last Wish and restore all nine.

Banderas has been busy since his heart attack. In addition to “Puss in Boots,” he was seen earlier this year in “Uncharted” and has “Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny” coming out in theaters next year. But even so, he joked on the red carpet to “Puss in Boots” co-star Salma Hayek that he should have made a dance cameo in her upcoming film “Magic Mike’s Last Dance.”

“He would have. He would have shamed them,” Hayek said. “He’s a really good dancer, Antonio.” Banderas proved it recently, directing and starring in a 2019 Spanish-language production of “A Chorus Line” in Barcelona.

In her review of “Puss in Boots: The Last Wish,” IndieWire critic Emma Stefansky wrote, “Perhaps what makes ‘The Last Wish’ a cut above the rest is the deftness with which it eases the audience into the Lesson of the Day format of most animated children’s movies. Ultimately, Puss’s desire to be free from death keeps him from enjoying his life — a somewhat darker concept than one usually finds in children’s media, especially geared towards an audience as young as this film’s. It never, however, plasters whatever it has to say all over the screen, allowing story beats to unfold naturally and in surprising ways.”

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