Coco is playing in theaters now and has captured the hearts of families everywhere. I was so thankful to attend #PixarCOCOEvent and interview several people involved in the making of this brilliant film. Newcomer Anthony Gonzalez voices main character Miguel and Alanna Ubach voices Mama Imelda. Our group sat down with these two incredible actors to talk about their process in making this film. From the moment they entered the room we knew we were in for a treat!
The relationship between Miguel and Mama Imelda is part of what makes Coco movie magic. Anthony and Alanna were great interviewing together off screen as well. Here are some of the highlights of the interview.
All Interview Photo Credits to Mama Latina Tips
Watch Anthony sing “Remember Me” acapella and try to not cry.
Anthony is thirteen years old and has an infectious laugh and smile. As one might imagine, he is thrilled to voice Miguel. He was asked what he thought of the premiere and all that comes with being the star of a Disney Pixar film.
“Oh, that was amazing. It was so much fun, doing all of the press!” He is not at all reserved. I’ve never seen someone so excited to sit down for an interview. “…. I just love it, and I can’t wait for everyone to see it!” He said he is so excited to be a part of a Disney Pixar film, he says he has been watching these movies since he was very little and that he was surprised that he and Miguel even looked a little alike.
Anthony spoke with gratitude about his family’s support of his dream. “Thankfully, I had the support of my parents and my siblings, so it was very easy to me, to do what I love. So what I tell all the people who really just have a hobby, or just what they love to do; I love singing, and I love to act. I really did is just never give up, and really do my best, and do what I love, and no one can stop me.” Talk about seizing his moment in the best of ways!
He shared a touching story of how he started celebrating the day of the dead.
“I do celebrate the Day of the Dead, and like the time I actually started celebrating when my grandfather passed away. He was very special to me, because he was always there for me, and he would just be so funny, and he was always there to support me in what I loved to do, which was sing. So starting when I was six year old, he passed away. I would love to celebrate the Day of the Dead, because it was a day where I could be with him, and connect with him once again, and that’s why I loved this joyful celebration. And I can’t believe I’m part of a movie that celebrates and shows this wonderful celebration.”
He also had the whole room cracking up when he shared one of his biggest dreams that have now come true as a child actor.
“Well, one of my big dreams was to be home schooled, and I finally got to be home schooled! Yay!” It was a thrill for me to share this with my kids who have 2 home school days a week. They are clearly living the dream.
Alanna had some beautiful things to share about what this movie means to her as a new mother.
“It (Coco) just paints such an exquisite picture of the afterlife, and when my son is old enough to see this film, he’ll be able to say, “Mama, if this is what the afterlife is like, I’m not afraid of death.” It’s just as beautiful as birth.”
Everyone got emotional when she was asked how she would like her son to remember her.
“Oh. How would I like him to remember me? That I sang him funny, silly little songs, and that I loved him with my very soul. He breaks my heart every single day. He gets a hammer to my heart and pounds on it, and then hands it back to me, and then it takes me 23 hours to put it back together all over again, and then the following day he does the same thing. He’s my life. He really is my life. And I hope he remembers that he was my life.”
She shared that her performance was inspired by her aunt. “That is my Tia Flora.” She shared that Tia Flora was very grand and ornate. She wore a full face of makeup all day long and was always in high heels. While I never had the joy of meeting her Tia Flora, I can absolutely see her fingerprints on Alanna’s performance. “She was the DNA of my family, and she was very passionate and had this stoicism that was so admirable when I was a kid, growing up.”
She summed up what being a part of this movie and what Pixar making this movie means to her in the most beautiful of ways.
“It was so important for Pixar to make this movie, because, to me, it really does respect the one important quality that Latin and Latin Americans have, and that is the importance of family. That it can never be broken. No borders or presidents or politics can ever break the bond of familia.”
Don’t miss our Ultimate Disney Pixar Coco gift guide!
Coco is playing in theaters NOW! I highly suggest you take the ones you love to celebrate the themes of “Coco,” including the importance of family, honoring your ancestors and following your dreams. Skip the ticket lines AND support our site by purchasing your tickets from Fandango today! You can watch the official trailer below.
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