The title of Saura's film refers to the 33 days Picasso spent working on his masterpiece mural, "Guernica," and the emotional turmoil he went through trying to capture his reaction to the destruction of the Basque town of the same name by the Nazi Luftwaffe during the Spanish Civil War in 1937. Picasso was 56 at that time so the casting of the 51 year-old Banderas doesn't seem too much of stretch. Banderas told Spanish newspaper El Pais (via Variety) that he grew up in Malaga only four blocks away from where Picasso himself was born, and that he was "a character that has pursued me for a long time and I always rejected."
There's no doubt that Banderas is enjoying somewhat of a renaissance recently after working with the likes of Woody Allen, Steven Sodebergh ("Haywire") and reteaming with Pedro Almodovar after so long on "The Skin I Love In," and of course providing the voice for the animated hit "Puss in Boots." This isn't expected to shoot until next summer (unclear if that means 2012 or 2013), but either way it will be a wait until we see Banderas' Picasso.