Mexico Takes Hollywood
As we watched from our cozy home in Puerto Vallarta, it was a thrill to see this year’s Academy Awards from Los Angeles, California, where several Oscars were handed out to Mexicans! Alfonso Cuarón accepted the honor for Best Director, Best Cinematography, and Best Foreign Film for his film Roma!
Congratulations are also in order for Spider-Man: A New Universe for walking away with the best Animated Film, of which twenty-four Mexicans participated in the development. Mexico has been endowed with some of the finest people to develop, produce, direct and star in award-winning movies.
Diego Luna, who sported a pin of the flag of Mexico (and it was the day of Día de la Bandera – Day of the Flag in Mexico) on his lapel, spoke of how ignored he felt at his first Academy Awards ceremony, five years ago. No one was interested in interviewing him, or actor, Gael García Bernal. Luna, actor, director, producer, appeared in the Oscar winning film If Beale Street Could Talk, and this year he had a turnaround experience. He was delighted to hear Spanish being spoken everywhere on the Red Carpet, microphones thrust in his face, interviewers competing for his attention. This year the Academy Awards were presented with so much Spanish language, there were subtitles! Luna joined the famous Spanish chef José Andrés to present a clip from Roma and opened with a statement in Spanish about how we can now speak Spanish at the Oscars! The Spanish actor, Javier Bardem stated (in Spanish) “There are no borders, there are no walls, that can stop ingenuity and talent” referring to this global gathering, where many countries were represented.
Adding to Bardem’s inspiration was Alfonso Cuarón’s quote from the famous French director, Claude Chabrol, when he spoke of New Wave, “there are no waves, there is only the ocean. I think that the nominees tonight have proven we are a part of the same ocean.”
The wave is one of change; the past few years Mexico has dominated the category of Best Director; not just Alfonso Cuarón on the Red Carpet, but also Guillermo del Toro (The Shape of Water) and Alejandro Iñárritu (The Revenant and Birdman). A veritable explosion of Mexican talent!
Seeing Yalitza Aparcio, nominated for Best Actress, in the front row with her mother, both indigenous women of Mexico indicates how far we have come, validating Andrés’ statement of how film gives voice to the voiceless and moves humanity forward.
The Puerto Vallarta International Film Festival (FICPV) will take place for twelve days in March. Puerto Vallarta will honor several films in a festival that draws talent from around the world. There will be forty films presented and the Golden Iguana will be awarded in several categories, international and nationally. From March 11th – 22nd, don’t miss the chance to help celebrate these contributions. For more information visit: ficpv.cuc.udg.mx.
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