Actor Saturno Cerra dies at 91
By Guillermo Fernandez
December 7, 2012
He appeared in spaghetti westerns directed by Sergio Leone with Clint Eastwood and the spectacular Claudia Cardinale and Sophia Loren
At the age of 91 years he died last Saturday at the riosellano Sebreño Pendás, Spain Saturno Cerra, a man of many trades who participated in the shooting of dozens of films and stressed throughout his life as a painter, avid reader, and occasional cook and amateur golf player. His first film was in a Brazilian soap opera, in the city of Sao Paulo, then back to Spain where he specialized in Westerns in the land of Almería, where he got to share the stage with actors as such as Clint Eastwood, Henry Fonda, Charles Bronson and Anthony Quinn and dramatic actresses like Sophia Loren and Claudia Cardinale. In the 1950, he worked in a department store in Madrid and was one among those who frequented the gatherings of Gregorio Marañón and José Martínez Ruiz 'Azorín'.
After the Civil War, when he was just 15 years-old, Saturno Cerra began working as a laborer in different localities of Ribadesella. He liked to paint and draw on paper when he wasn’t busy drawing pictures on the cement sidewalks and in the sand each day. He emigrated to Madrid and got a job at Galerias Preciados, an establishment founded in 1943 by the Spaniard Pepin Fernandez. He became a star dependent to the point of reaching a salary on an average of seven million pesetas a year. But Madrid and the misery of postwar Spain generated concerns for Cerra so he made the decision to emigrate.
It pilgrimage by the embassies of Canada, Mexico and Australia, where he was denied a visa to enter the country until he was claimed by a company or a family. One day he knocked on the Brazilian delegation, where they opened the doors wide and in less than 24 hours he was traveling from Barajas to Sao Paulo, a city that did everything to make lentils daily.
Until a friend suggested they take part in the filming of a soap opera and later came an acceptable role in the film where he also designed the scenery. Money was scarce in receivables and so he moved to the city of Santos, where he found an extraordinary spot to sell dozens of paintings to an American couple, coffee exporters and the pledged to buy his entire production.
He returned to Spain in 1964 to visit his mother in Sebreño and on a subsequent trip to Madrid he was placed in the path of Almeria, where Sergio Leone was filming a Spaghetti western. For Leone he worked in “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly”, although the first film of his westerns in Almeria was “Seven Guns for Mac Gregor”. Saturno Cerra found his true expression, which, he said, his dream, for what he liked, was "put on his pistols, his hat and ride a horse."
In 2011, he retired peacefully in Sebreño, was honored at the First International Western Film Festival held in Almeria. He had become a regular at Ribadesella practicing golf at the Rasa de Berbes, where his friends gave him a Stetson hat on his 90th birthday.
Born: 11/25/1924, Ucio, Ribadesella, Asturias Spain
Died: 12/5/2015, Sebreño, Asturias, Spain
Saturno Cerra’s westerns – actor:
A Coffin for the Sheriff – 1965 (piano player)
Django Does Not Forgive - 1966
7 Guns for the Mac Gregors – 1966 (Johnny MacGregor)
Dynamite Joe – 1966 (professor)
The Good, the Bad and the Ugly – 1966 (bounty hunter)
Johnny Yuma – 1966 (One-Eye)
The Ugly Ones – 1966 (Gomez henchman)
Up the MacGregors! – 1966 (Johnny MacGregor)
Once Upon a Time in the West – 1968 (Frank henchman)
The Taste of Vengeance – 1968 (padre)
When Satan Grips the Colt – 1969 (Johnny’s ranch hand)
Kill the Poker Player – 1972 (piano player)
Cuando Éramos Pistoleros – 2012