We can already feel the hype of Walt Disney Animation Studios’ new original feature film, “Encanto,” and we are as immersed in the magic this movie can bring as many others.
“Encanto,” directed by Byron Howard (Oscar®-winning director of “Zootopia,” “Tangled”), takes place in the hidden mountains of Colombia, where magic is as common as breathing. The family followed in the film, the Madrigals, is filled with the unique gift of magic bequeathed to them by their grandparents. Their supernatural powers include super-strength to healing capabilities.
Everyone possesses an otherworldly charm, except one family member, Mirabel. Throughout the film, we get to follow Mirabel’s experience as a non-magical family member as she discovers that her family is in imminent danger.
Each character takes us through a world where magical realism is present at every corner — a genre often associated with the Colombian author Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s literary works.
The film is riddled with many entertainers who have become household names , such as Stephanie Beatriz as Mirabel, Diane Guerrero as Isabela, John Leguizamo as Bruno, Wilmer Valderrama
as Agustín, and Maluma as Mariano. As well as it is filled with the impeccable talents of Mauro Castillo as Félix, Angie Cepeda
as Julieta, Adassa as Dolores, Carolina Gaitan as Pepa as Carolina Gaitán, Jessica Darrowas Luisa, and more.
And, if there is a spoiler we can disclose, it is that this film is creating a space where not only the audience feel identified but also the cast.
During a brief press call with Mauro Castillo and Adassa as Dolores, Mauro told BELatina News that “it was a great experience for us to be in this film, a great opportunity because we are independent artists who grow organically and our dream has always been to reach more people and inspire other artists.”
Both Mauro and Adassa are Colombian, so they were overjoyed to represent one of the many pieces of Colombian culture.
“This was the opportunity for everyone to hear my story,” Adassa added. “I never thought that I would be cast as Dolores — my dream as a little girl was to be in a Disney movie.”
But let’s be honest — representation plays a large role in this “Encanto.”
This is yet another attempt to represent a piece of our Latinx culture, which, as we all know, has historically been excluded from the film industry’s narrative. Now, the Latinx community, Colombians all over, and film critics are waiting to get sucked into the magical world of “Encanto.” And the cast is excited to be part of a movie that allows Disney to understand the importance of being as inclusive as possible.
“It is an achievement for me, for all Latinos, to see not only us, but characters represented as Afro-Latinos and to see a diverse family that speaks to who we are worldwide,” Adassa, Dolores’ voice, said when asked about why “Encanto” is so important to her.
When asked the same question, Mauro also agreed with Adassa.
“Well, as Adassa said, it feels great to represent the Afro-Latino culture, which sometimes is not seen much in these entertainment spaces,” Mauro said.
“It is so good to be able to show not only that side of the Latino culture, but all the love and color that Colombia has to offer the world,” he added with an enthusiasm in his voice that would make anyone want to binge-watch the movie once it’s in theaters.
The cast is a testament to how much effort was behind in providing proper representation. There’s still a long way to go for Hollywood to get it right, but the road is being set (finally!).
You can watch “Encanto” at participating theaters in the United States on November 24th.