The Spanish journalist and writer José María Sánchez-Silva, unaware that he was adapting a folk tale about religious devotion rewarded, produced a complex narrative about the mother-son dyad: Marcelino pan y vino (1952). This was the basis of a popular Spanish film adaptation directed by Ladislao Vajda, released in 1954. It was then remade in 1991 as an Italian/Spanish/French co-production, directed by Luigi Comencini, and, recently, it has been translated into animation for television, the result of Spanish/Japanese/French collaboration in 2000. This article analyses how each version reveals shifting perceptions of childhood by focusing on the ideological function of the orphan child and the spectacle of the 'adorable boy'
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