El talento de Emilio "El Indio" Fernández corrió como reguero de pólvora genético alcanzando a dos de sus célebres hermanos que incursionaron con éxito en la pantalla grande, como fue el caso de Fernando Fernández, cantante, compositor, actor y realizador, y Jaime Fernández, actor, director y líder sindical. Más curioso y enredado aun, la manera en que se propició el parentesco con El Indio.
El padre de Emilio, Emilio Fernández Garza, se divorció de la mamá de este, Sara Romo, para casarse con su cuñada Eloísa Reyes que había enviudado del teniente coronel Fernando Fernández, con quien había procreado ya a Fernando Fernández. De hecho, Emilio y Fernando eran primos y se convirtieron en hermanastros. Más tarde, del matrimonio formado por Emilio padre de El Indio y Eloísa nació Jaime, hermanastro de aquellos y a su vez, primo de Emilio.
Fernando Fernández (1916-1999), con tan sólo 17 años, se inició como cantante en la XEH de Monterrey y decidió irse a la capital para probar fortuna, donde trabajó incluso en la venta de dulces afuera del cine Teresa. En 1935, Emilio Tuero lo recomendó en la XEB y un año después logró incursionar y obtener un gran éxico en la XEW con el nombre de “Lolito, un chico travieso”, acompañado por el pianista Paco Treviño.
These were followed by roles in La Feria de las Flores (1942), alongside Antonio Badú, Stella Inda and a very young Pedro Infante. Fernando not only began a successful career as a bolero singer, but he also managed to create all kinds of tragicomic characters at the same time. Soon, he came to stand out in the German suburb cinema, forming a couple with Meche Barba, the Mexican rumbera who competed against the Cuban stars in films of music, sensuality, and tragedy.
In Nosotros (1944), Fernando appears in the musical portion with celebrities such as Kiko Mendive and Amparo Montes and has a dramatic role in Las abandonadas (1944), directed by his stepbrother, El Indio. However, Fernando demonstrated his great histrionic ability when his brother gave him the role of the priest in Enamorada (1946), filmed in Cholula and set during the Mexican revolution.
María Félix is the wild girl enduring rude attacks by the General, played by Pedro Armendariz, until these become erotic confrontations. In addition to the photographic adornments of Gabriel Figueroa and the impact of the leading couple, Fernando appeared as an actor in singular scenes such as the slapping duel in which he himself is affected.
After Enamorada, Fernando participated as a singer in El fugitivo (1947) filmed in Mexico by John Ford and co-directed by El Indio Fernández. María Félix also appeared in Río Escondido (1947), where she plays the anonymous heroine tasked with bringing the light of education to dozens of peasant children in a lost town. Here, she receives the support of another underground hero: a rural doctor played by Fernando Fernández, who supports her school and organizes the locals for a vaccination campaign to prevent infections.
Fernando was memorable in his encounter with María and with bad-guy Carlos López Moctezuma. By then, Fernando could be content with co-stars and supporting roles under the direction of his brother, however his career took a turn when he starred in La Venus de fuego (1948), by Jaime Salvador. It was a delirious slum melodrama with songs by Gonzalo Curiel starring him and Meche Barba, a couple that would cause uproar in the cabaret genre.
The plot revolves around a pearl company employee in love with a cabaret dancer and, because of her charms, into a life of robbery and crime. This would be followed by Amor de la calle (1949), where Fernando is a humble tortero in a film with musical interventions by Los Panchos and Toña La Negra; Amor vendido (1950), a gruesome plot in which he plays a composer with a limp; Pasionaria y Dancing, dance hall (1951), also with Barba; and Viajera (1951), with Rosa Carmina.
Author of songs like "Muchachita", "Aunque tú no me quieras", "¿Por qué te vas?", "Arrabalera", and "Media noche", Fernando Fernández successfully performed musical themes by Carlos Crespo such as "Hipócrita" and "Callejera". Likewise, he starred in Arrabalera and Callejera alongside Marga López, and stood out in comedies with Joaquín Pardavé like Mi campeón, Doña Mariquita de mi corazón and El casto Susano.
In the sixties he gave up acting and made his directorial debut with the saga of El fistol del diablo (1958), which was followed by adventure films such as El señor tormenta and Tormenta en el ring, La sombra blanca y Los hermanos Centella. He played Pancho Villa in El Correo del Norte and La Máscara de la Muerte, starring Luis Aguilar and Fernando Oses as La Sombra Vengadora. After participating in El crepúsculo de un Dios (1968), directed by El Indio, he retired from the cinema to dedicate himself to directing telenovelas, and only returned as an actor under the direction of his brother Jaime Fernández in El sinaloense and Allá en el rancho de las flores, both from 1983. He made more than 60 films in his career.
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