Jeff Bezos really broke the internet. This new movie shows the early days of the Amazon founder

Madeline Marr, Miami Herald

MIAMI – Think back a long time ago, to a time when you literally couldn’t order anything popping into your head at 4am from your phone.

The year was 1994, and Amazon’s founder, Jeff Bezos, was a nine-to-five year old, hard worker with a forward-thinker’s dream—an insanely lofty dream that had to do with a massive computer network called “the Internet.”

The Vision Films film, “Bezos: The Beginning,” which premieres Monday night at the University of Miami’s Cosford Cinema, delves into what turned that unrealistic dream into the largest e-commerce site on the web.

The film opens as Bezos, played by University of Miami graduate Armando Gutierrez (“The Little Mermaid”), contemplates whether to quit his posh hedge fund job in New York City with DE Shaw.

With a loving nudge from loyal classmate/girlfriend-turned-wife Mackenzie Scott (UCF alum Alex Mitchell, from “An American Murder Mystery”) and a money splurge from his stepfather Mike Bezos (Emilio Estefan), the New Mexico native has already taken the brave digital leap. .

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You see Bezos starting the online book market out of his garage in Bellevue, Washington, with the first sale taking place in July 1995.

(Trivia: In those days the Amazon wasn’t called the world’s largest river, it was called the Kadabra, half of the phrase uttered after a magic trick. It obviously didn’t stick, because it sounded like a “corpse”.)

Gutierrez, who is also involved in the producing credits and orders something from Amazon almost daily, said it felt “natural” for him to make the film, based on the book Zero for Hero.

The original 305 area code said “He shows you the early years… fights with competitors and different people who don’t want him to do it.” “When I read the script, I was obviously very excited to be a part of this origin story.”

Although Gutierrez hasn’t met Bezos, he believes the king of the World Wide Web should provide incentives for us slugs in his hometown.

“The fact that someone like that went to school in Miami should excite you,” the 41-year-old said with a laugh.

Speaking of raving, Gutierrez said he’s “really, really” into playing the divorced father of four, even shaving half his head to guide the billionaire through various parts of his amazing journey.

“There is a difference between then and now,” the actor said. “He knew he wanted to start something, but he wasn’t sure what it was. He was still insecure, like he was afraid of quitting his job. Go back to Bezos in ’94 and tell him, ‘If you do this, you’ll be the richest man in history.'” And he’d be like, “Yeah. Sure, sure. “

As for choosing Bezos’ beloved stepfather, Miguel “Mike” Bezos, Emilio Estefan was the obvious choice. Not only did the famous music producer look like an actual person, but the two Cuban natives knew each other.

“He was a perfect fit,” Gutierrez said.

Estefan, who has appeared in domestic films such as Marley and Me, Rock of Ages and The Specialist, agreed.

people thought [the Amazon idea] “He was crazy, but he had a vision and his dad loved him so much,” said the Miami Sound Machine legend, who arrived with his superstar wife Gloria. It’s a wonderful immigrant story. This is America. People take it for granted but that’s it [movie] It sends a message: In America, all dreams can come true. We live in the best country in the world.”

“Bezos: The Beginning” is now playing on streaming services, including (yes) Amazon.

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