In a tragic scene that seems almost right out of the series itself, a “veteran location manager” for Narcos Season 4 was shot to death in rural Mexico, according to El Pais, a Spanish-language daily newspaper.
A translation of the article from El Pais says that Carlos Muñoz Portal, 37, “was killed Monday (September 11) in a rural area of … Mexico, a violent region in the center of the country, while looking for locations for the filming of the Narcos series by Netflix, which will arrive in Mexico in its fourth season. Muñoz was a seasoned veteran filmmaker to find filming locations for the major US film productions working in Mexico.”
It had been widely rumored that Narcos Season 4 will be set in Mexico, instead of the Colombian milieu that was featured in seasons 1 through 3, but this had not yet been confirmed by Netflix or the showrunners. The Hollywood Reporter, though, reports, “Narcos season 4 moves from Colombia to Mexico and it centers on the fearsome Juarez cartel.”
El Pais reported of Narcos Season 4, “Production will soon portray the Cartel de Juárez, an organization headed by Amado Carrillo, better known as El señor de los cielos.” The newspaper added that there are fears that Netflix will shoot the series somewhere other than Mexico because of the violence.
The El Pais story continued: “The facts that led to the death of Muñoz Portal are not clear. A friend of his assures that on Monday he got into his car and drove to the State of Mexico to take some photographs for production. It is not known why, but Carlos’ body was found hours later in the compact car with several shots. The vehicle was on an unnamed dirt road in the community of San Bartolo Actopan, in the municipality of Temascalapa. The site is located to the northeast of the State of Mexico, very close to the border with Hidalgo. That entity, the most populated of the country, is the one that has more homicides. Last July, 182 cases were registered, a rate of 12.2 per 100,000 inhabitants.”
The Spanish daily reported that there are no witnesses and that a friend of the victim thinks it’s possible that “the presence of a foreigner with a camera was uncomfortable for the inhabitants, frightened by the insecurity of the region.”
According to The Hollywood Reporter, “Munoz was an experienced location manager who had worked on numerous Hollywood productions in Mexico, including Tony Scott’s Man on Fire, Mel Gibson’s Apocalypto and the latest Bond film Spectre.”
Netflix issued a brief statement to The Hollywood Reporter, saying, “We are aware of the passing of Carlos Munoz Portal, a well-respected scout, and send our condolences to his family. The facts surrounding his death are still unknown as authorities continue to investigate.”