Everybody seems to love Coco, the new Disney-Pixar movie about a Mexican boy who wants to be a reggaetonero, but his grandma is not having it because lil’ punk-ass Miguel doesn’t have enough street cred – or something, I don’t know. I haven’t seen the movie yet.
But according to El País, studio bigwigs will be forcing Spanish audiences to watch the flick in Mexican Spanish, a first in over 25 years.
Alejandro Nogueras, the creative director of Disney’s Spanish dubbing division, said as much to the newspaper:
“Not dubbing Coco to another Spanish accent is a happy exception. When we saw the movie, we realized that it was important to keep it true to Mexican Spanish because the country also a protagonist in the story.”
Spain has a curious history with dubbing. All of Disney’s classics used to be consumed in “neutral” or “Hispanic” Spanish until 1991, when La Bella y la Bestia was finally dubbed for local audiences. Before then, Disney didn’t think it was worth the trouble, and thus older generations of Spanish Disney fans still prefer Latin American accents when it comes to enjoying Snow White, among other older productions.
Then there’s the Spanish to Catalan, or Catalan to Spanish ordeal, which is an entirely different, and very political subject. (One interesting opinion about that can be read here.)
In these highly PC times, Disney took lots of steps not to fuck up Coco. A few years ago, the company pissed off a lot of people when it tried to awkwardly trademark the Day of the Dead celebration. Disney wised-up by hiring Lalo Alcaraz, the Mexican-American cartoonist, as a cultural consultant:
“Alcaraz gives the studio credit concerning Coco, which he notes is co-directed by rising young talent Adrian Molina, who is of Mexican descent. ‘Pixar was already on its way to making this a culturally authentic film, and we met somewhere in the middle,’ Alcaraz says. ‘And even though I’m not very corporate, they listened to what I had to say.'”
Here in America, I hear Coco is also being screened in Spanish in select theaters. But in case you’re taking a non-English speaker to see the movie, the TheaterEars app can stream a Spanish-language track to any smartphone while the movie is playing on the big screen (bring good, noise-cancelling headphones).
Man, I really hope lil’ Miguel gets a reggaeton recording contract. Maluma’s ass needs to be taken down a peg, and a song about perreo esquelético can totally achieve that.
UPDATE #1: I saw Coco. Read my thoughts here.
María Rubio was so good as Catalina Creel, an iconic telenovela villain, the role ruined her career
According to sources on Twitter, and also TvNotas, the holy bible of Mexican gossip, María Rubio, the legendary actress best known for her role as Catalina Creel de Larios in Cuna de lobos, has passed away. She was 83 years old.
Thanks to her role as Soraya Montenegro in María la del Barrio, Itati Cantoral has been dominating the internet with an insane amount of memes, gifs, and even a House of Cards promo special. Itati blew up in the mid ’90s, when older millennials were still teens, and she’s that generation’s go-to character when it comes to Mexican telenovela villains.
Yes, Cantoral was great as Soraya, but the top dog in the telenovela villain game was — and has always been — María Rubio. The Tijuana-born actress was so good in Cuna de lobos that, according to an interview she did with Cristina Saralegui, the role ruined her career:
“[Catalina Creel] was a difficult, beloved character. I enjoyed playing her, but she also hurt me a lot. People completely forgot about María Rubio and now it seems that, after 40 years of being an actress, I’ve only done Catalina Creel.”
Catalina, a murderous matriarch, was known for having some of the best one-liners in telenovela history. But in the same interview with Saralegui, which was filmed over 20 years ago, María proved to be just as cunning and smart as her infamous character, but also incredibly funny:
“[Although I played a villain], I’ve received nothing but compliments, love, and admiration. Never aggression. I think viewers do attack the bad ones — bad actresses, that is.”
If you understand Spanish, check out the hilarious interview below. Watch María viciously own everyone in a panel of full of young telenovela villains:
Traumatic advice from aunt Rosa: “Don’t torture your Care Bear, Mijo. Or else.”
I was 6 years old when I yelled at Tugs, my Care Bear. I put him in time-out for not agreeing to the rules of an imaginary game I had just created.
I built a little time-out fortress for him to stay in while I played with my other toys. Coincidentally my tía Rosa was visiting that day. I urged her to see all my toys when she came into the house. I also explained to her that Tugs was in time-out, to which she replied in shock, “Mijo, mira, You have to be nice to your toys.”
I replied, “Tía, I am nice to my toys, but I’m teaching him a lesson.”
She contested nervously, “No, Mijo, you have to be nice to your toys or they might not be nice to you.”
I wasn’t following her logic.
“Mijo, if you’re not nice to your toys, then at night time they might wake up and crawl into your bed to cut your toes with tiny razors,” she said slowly while staring at my imprisoned Care Bear.
“What?!” I whispered to her while looking at Tugs from the corner of my eye.
“Yes, your toys might do very bad things to you if you don’t treat them good.”
I stared at her in disbelief.
She stood up and walked towards the doorway.
“Mijo, I brought you some tortillas. Come in the kitchen and let’s warm them up,” Rosa said casually.
From then on, Tugs sat on a tufted pillow on my dresser while I slept in velcro shoes for the next year. Growing up in my Mexican-American family meant that everything was possibly alive and watching you.