Jorge Antonio Guerrero photographed by Jesús Soto. MUA: Emilio Becerril. Hair: Octavio León. Styling: Nayeli de Alba.
Jorge Antonio Guerrero also debuted cinematographically in Roma: the film was his first interaction before the cameras (Luis Miguel, the series, the second) and the filming process, within the context of megaproduction-secret script-personal film by Alfonso Cuarón, was a meeting point between everything he knew about the performative arts, what he learned during the shoot and his martial training, applied to the subsequent mediatic greater good that we have all lived through these months. Jorge talks with us about his preparation and what it meant to be in that context, always in the present.
Alejandro Peregrina: Jorge Antonio, I want to hear your version of all this secretive casting and filming process. I know this was your first performance before cameras.
Jorge Antonio: It was a long process, there was a quality of secrecy and discretion throughout the process that helped a lot by the invitation of Alfonso, and I practically did this without knowing the narrative course of the character. That invites you to let yourself be surprised by what is happening and the chronological rhythm of the film. Personally what I like about interpretive art is that you do not know what is going to happen, you make an approach to your character, but always when you get to the set, there is something that can change. Let’s say it was what the same invitation makes you do, but at a very high exponential level.
Suit and shirt: Dolce & Gabbana, Bag: Downtown/CENTRO
AP: Was that intimidating? During the process did you feel this level of affectation of what Roma would eventually become?
JA: Yes, especially because it was my first film; he had done theater and poetry out loud; there was a scenic quality in the whole process due to the level of discipline and precision that the production required and to which Alfonso pushed us. In that sense, I was finding similarities that helped my process, but it was challenging especially on the emotive-affective level.
AP: What did he do to you?
JA: Things are appearing at the moment, in my case it was a family identity on the part of my father and my mother. I recognized my two military grandparents and something is going to amalgamate there that, although you are in this disposition to be surprised, it is still challenging because those affectations are coming out on the set moment.
Trench coat and pants: The Pack. Shirt: Hugo Boss. Boots: Calvin Klein Jeans.
AP: I just discovered that, even when they were dosed with the script, there were still circumstances in which they did not know what would happen until they were recording. An example that I like a lot is the scene of the furniture store where you go armed, threatening, in the last scene we see you in the film and they did not know, neither you nor Yalitza, that their characters would be there. Or did you know?
JA: No. I knew that this was the narrative ending of Fermín and I knew how it was going to happen, but when I got there and Alfonso told me, I recognized his genius and his skill immediately. For example, in the furniture store, for me it was so shocking to see Yali there, because it is so imposing, that the first shots I cried. Alfonso did not say anything to me, if I would walk slower in the next, but then I already knew what I was going to find.
AP: What indications do you have left for yourself, for the future, that you learned in this set?
JA: From very technical indications or how to walk. I tell you a very memorable one: we were doing a scene and we had about six shots and Alfonso was with this delivery and this energy, suddenly he is looking for something and asks ‘where is Jorge Antonio ?!’ He sees me, he approaches and with a very clear determination, he looks at me and says’ You already know what fart. Prevented. “That makes you identify more with the project because I knew what he was playing because we were all changing as the project progressed.
AP: Rome sounds like a great leap of confidence for absolutely everyone involved …
JA: Total, and it makes it much more intimidating. For my character it helped a lot to do kendo, to do aikido, because they are meditation in movement, which had a lot to do with me to help me get to know Fermín. Those elements helped me to eliminate stress too, because I remember that once they only told me ‘we are going to record something in a hotel’, but they did not tell me what and something that those arts taught me is that when you do not know what you’re going with face, train more.
Bottom: Trench coat and shirt: Fendi. Belt: NDA. Boots: OUTOFCOMFORT. Skirt: Sánchez-Kane.
Jorge Antonio tells me that his pragmatism comes from the legacy of martial arts, especially from Zen and the Taoist current in China. I tell him that Chinese traditions are possibly the longest-uninterrupted of humanity and he tells me that this sense of heritage and tradition rounded off the gift that for him was the production and gave synchrony to its two facets. To top it off I ask you to tell me about poetry. Jorge and I were sitting in the smoking area of the studio, which faces the front and terrace of the house on the other side of the sidewalk and Jorge Antonio, more appreciative of his surroundings, tells me about that poetry:
JA: I do not know if you noticed, but have you seen who is sitting there? We sit here and I see him sitting quietly in front of us too-Jorge Antonio has to explain to me, because of my astigmatism, that there is a sculpture of Buddha in the house opposite- and the poetry has to do with that, with a moment not premeditated that, with the word or a movement or a gesture, we can do something truly communicative that can identify us more.
AP: For me, at this moment, what identifies you is a sense of emotions versus control.
JA: That’s a reading … It’s more like you know you’re walking at some point, but with a willingness to let go; that is a poetic act. For example, Alfonso would tell me to move to the right of the camera but had to remark ‘ do it with poetry, do it with poetry’ and I loved it. I’ll keep that with me.