'They bring their own authentic experiences': Angel Manuel Soto wanted Mexican stars in Blue Beetle
Angel Manuel Soto was determined to cast Mexican actors in his film 'Blue Beetle', the first live-action movie to feature a Latino superhero.
Angel Manuel Soto was desperate to cast Mexican actors in 'Blue Beetle'.
The Puerto Rican filmmaker has directed the new DC Extended Universe (DCEU) film – the first live-action movie to feature a Latino superhero in the form of Jaime Reyes/Blue Beetle – and wanted the casting to be as authentic as possible.
Speaking to Collider, Angel said: "One of the things that we wanted to do, first of all, was hire Mexican actors – not just Mexican Americans, but also go to Mexico and get the best stars from Mexico, like Damian Alcazar or Adriana Barraza.
"They bring their own authentic experiences to the movie, and that helps a lot to inform the conditions we want to put the Reyes family in."
He continued: "We want the Reyes family to live in a world that affects their environment, that affects their decisions. Like for example, in my case from Puerto Rico – displacement, colonialism, gentrification.
"Those things that are real threats, home insecurity, not putting food on the table, proper health care"
The 40-year-old director explained how he wanted to "ground" the movie in experiences that shape Latino communities.
He explained: "I wanted this film, because it is the first time you see a character that is Latino on the paper, that his families are Latino, I really wanted to ground it on the experiences that form a lot of us, right?
"Like oftentimes in a lot of movies, our stories are told in the middle of the sentence, or in the middle of the paragraph, like, boom, gangster, boom, you came out of prison, boom. We never have a chance to tell our history of where we come from and the stuff that really does affect us."