Édgar Ramírez, the antagonist of “Jungle Cruise”
NEW YORK (AP) – It’s always important to Édgar Ramírez that the humanity of his characters be palpable, even if it’s the villain in an adventure film inspired by a Disneyland attraction.
The Venezuelan actor, who plays the evil Spanish conqueror Aguirre in “Jungle Cruise”, recognizes this as one of the great qualities of Disney.
In fact, “I wouldn’t say he’s a villain,” Ramirez said in a recent interview from Los Angeles.
“I mean, for me he is the antagonist. The reasons he does what he does and the reason he finally turns to the dark side are noble at heart. He is simply unable to adequately handle his pain and grief for the loss of his loved ones. “
“I don’t justify your actions,” he continued, “but I understand. I can identify with your problem. And while this is a fantastic film with a lot of action and a lot of humor and a great adventurous tone … Aguirre’s humanity is very palpable ”, explained the actor.
“Jungle Cruise”, which premiered in theaters on Friday and the Disney + streaming service (with Premium access), was directed by Spanish director Jaume Collet-Serra and stars Dwayne Johnson as the captain of a river boat and Emily Blunt as a British scientist who travels to the Amazon in search of a mythical miracle flower.
Ramírez plays a cursed conqueror four centuries earlier during his own search for the plant along with his companions Sancho and Melchor, played by the Spanish Dani Rovira and Quim Gutiérrez respectively.
And his character is not only covered in snakes, but practically made of them. Ramírez, who has said he greatly respects these animals, recalled some of his many memorable encounters (“Too many!”) With snakes in his native Venezuela.
“I lived for three years in Barinas, which is a province in the plains, and I found snakes everywhere. Once I even saw a rolled-up one in the bathroom sink, “he said, scared.
“Another day I was on a farm with my friends, I was maybe 9 or 10 years old, and we were throwing rocks at soda cans that we put on fence posts. I had to pick up the soda to put it back on the pole and … something moved in the bushes: a little anaconda. “
But at the same time he expressed himself “fascinated” by them: “Every time I come across a documentary or something about snakes, I always stop to watch it.”
In the film, Ramírez shares great scenes with Johnson, Rovira and Gutiérrez. What was the most fun for him about this whole experience?
“Working with Dwayne is a blessing, he is such a luminous person, he has such generosity, I really adore him,” he said of the American star also known as The Rock.
“And with Dani and Quim it was a dream. In fact, one of the best memories I have is simply hearing them speak and sharing their observations of the world. Dani is one of the best comedians in the Spanish language and Quim has a wonderful cadence for comedy. It was fun being the three conquerors. “
Best known for dramatic roles in films such as “Point Break” and “Hands of Stone” and the miniseries “Carlos” and “The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story,” which deserved Emmy nominations, Ramírez said this new job “means a lot” to him because he grew up watching Disney movies.
Although it was only on Saturday that he was able to ride for the first time at the famous theme park attraction in Anaheim, California, where the film had its world premiere, it hinted at the possibility of a possible sequel or franchise in the style of the blockbuster “Pirates of the Caribbean. from the Caribbean)”.
“’Jungle Cruise’ is Disneyland’s most iconic attraction, and Disney is the most iconic entertainment universe in history. So it feels great, ”Ramírez said very pleased.
“It is beautiful to be part of the Disney universe in a film so iconic that we hope it will become the adventure saga of this decade,” he concluded.
Take a look
According to critics, the movie “Jungle Cruise” is pleasantly cartoonish from its production design to its costumes (some of the computer-created animals are artificial).
“Jungle Cruise” is the new bet of the Disney factory for the adventure genre, a film that has cost about 200 million dollars.