Smothering Passion has a real story: The truth behind the movie

Directed by David M. Rosenthal, suffocating passion is the new Netflix movie. The French romantic drama feature revolves around Roxana Aubrey, an academic who decides to leave her studies and leave Paris, France. So, she decides to go to the south of France to participate in a free diving course, and she falls in love with her teacher Pascal Gauthier, who is a diving world champion.

Em suffocating passion, as they discover a little more about their relationship through the various competitions. Thus, Roxana becomes an expert in underwater sports, generating conflicts in their relationship. Starring Camille Rowe and Sofiane Zermani, the sports drama is full of love, drama and competition.

Sports drama characters show the reality of relationships. Thus, leaving with the doubt if the events of the real life can somehow inspire the story. If so, what would be the real story and the similarity with the events described in the film? We will see the answers to these questions here.

suffocating passion is it real story?

Sim, suffocating passion inspired by real events. Directed and written by David M. Rosenthal, the film is inspired by the life of French diver Audrey Mestre, world record holder. Several adaptations of engaging events in the French sportswoman’s life are narrated for television.

We can see in suffocating passion, that the main events take place in France, while Audrey moves to Mexico City, Mexico, during her adolescence. So she decided to study marine biology at a university in La Paz, Mexico.

Previously, Audrey was already very connected to underwater sports and was already diving at thirteen. However, she didn’t get her certification until she was sixteen, as there was a law in France that prevented her. Then, in 1996, Audrey became interested in underwater sports and became close to Francisco “Pipín” Ferreras, a famous free diver from Cuba.

So, they immediately started a relationship and moved to Miami, Florida where their training began. In this way, Audrey who originated the story of suffocating passion began to reach record depths. With that, she became a diver that everyone respected in her own right.

In 1999, Audrey and Francisco got married in the coastal city of Fort Lauderdale, Florida. In the same year, Audrey broke the women’s freediving world record with a depth of 125 meters in just one breath of air. So the following year, she again broke her own record by diving to a depth of 130 meters.

In October 2002, she decided to break the world record for unlimited freediving. This record was set by Tanya Streeter on August 17, 2002, when Streeter made a dive to 160 meters deep.

What happened to Audrey?

Audrey, who originated the story of Suffocating Passion, took a dive off the beach in Bayahibe, Dominican Republic, on October 4, 2002. She was with the diving team that Francisco commanded, and her depth reached 166, however, she continued practicing.

On the remarkable day of October 12, 2002, Audrey was determined to make a dive to a depth of 171 meters. When she reached the depth she had aimed for, Audrey opened the valve on her air tank that would inflate the lift bag, which would bring her to the surface.

But, unfortunately, there was no air in the tank. Therefore, it forced the rescue diver to inflate his lift bag using his supply, even though it was too late. It was not possible for Audrey, who originated the story of the Suffocating Passion, reach the surface quickly due to inadequate inflation. Also, a strong current and the riser rope was not vertical.


Image: Disclosure/Netflix

It was supposed to only be a 3 minute dive, however she was underwater for over 8 minutes and 30 seconds. So Francisco put on his scuba gear and went after his wife to save her, even though the worst had already happened. However, her death was later declared in the hospital.

The event had great repercussion, due to not having followed the appropriate guidelines. Several professionals argued that the event should not have taken place sooner than planned. That’s because there should be a greater amount of safety divers, rescue equipment and medical professionals on site. Thus, the diver who originated the story suffocating passion did not resist.

Apparently, she would have had a pulse when she was brought to the surface, but due to lack of medical equipment, Audrey couldn’t resist.

The reason for Audrey’s death

When trying to resurrect his wife underwater, the audience realized that he wasted a very big time, being definitive to save her. They also said that the Cuban diver had responsibility for loading Audrey’s air tank, even if he didn’t let anyone check. as in suffocating passionseveral questions were raised about their motivations in relation to it.

After Audrey’s Cremation, his ashes were thrown into the water. However, she was also posthumously inducted into the Women Divers Hall of Fame in 2002. In the year 2004, Francisco published a book in her name called ‘The Dive: A Story of Love and Obsession’ written by Linda Robertson .

Two books were released with different versions

Audrey's Story in Smothering Passion
Image: Disclosure/Netflix

The book portrays the Cuban diver’s version of what happened on that tragic day. Surprisingly, Carlos Serra’s 2006 book ‘The Last Attempt: The True Story of Freediving Champion Audrey Mestre and the Mystery of Her Death’ shows a very different version of Francisco’s story.

In Serra’s book, he confirms that Francisco and Audrey were close to a divorce. However, Francisco was not happy with Audrey’s success. Serra once again confirms in his book that Francisco was to blame for Audrey’s death, as is the case with Roxana in Suffocating Passion, after sabotaging your equipment. That’s because we know that Serra has worked with Audrey and was on the diver’s last team.

Then, ESPN in 2013 premiered a documentary called ‘No Limits’, which is related to a series ‘Nine for IX’. Even though the details about Audrey’s death have a lot of speculation, the similarities between her story and Roxana Aubrey’s are noticeable.

Both abandoned their studies to practice underwater sports and were delighted with their gift for the same. In addition, the two had a romance with renowned sportsmen. Even with different names, it’s not hard to see the influence Audrey’s story had on the Netflix movie.

So you watched suffocating passion on Netflix?

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