The entire team for the film Heli, shown In Competition, turned out for the press conference. Its director, Amat Escalante, the co-scriptwriter Gabriel Reyes, and two of the main starring actors, Andrea Vergara (Estela) and Armando Espitia (Heli), look back on the experience.
Amat Escalante, on the theme of violence in his film:
It is not a film that sets out to destroy the Mexican tourist indutry. The reality on the ground in Mexico is actually worse than what I show in the film. iIwanted to examine violence by putting it back in its context rather than simply showing it... and to focus specifically on how some people cause it while others are witnesses, I wanted to show violence as it really is and film it in an original way in order to draw the public's attention.
Amat Escalante, on casting the role of Estela:
My brother Martin handled that part. He met Andrea Vergara while walking around the city one day, and took a photo of her. Her looks attracted us immediately. We then met her and hoped she would be available. It's been great for us to work with her.
Amat Escalante, on the film's opening sequence:
This first scene is the result of several images which came to mind as I wrote the screenplay. I then wanted to change the first scene during the edit, but it didn't work out. The image was just too powerful.
Gabriel Reyes, again on the violence which underlies the whole film:
It would have been socially irresponsible not to talk of the violence in Mexico, because it's there. But our film is not a political statement on life in Mexico today. And violence is not solely a Mexican issue. We can all relate to these issues.
Reported by BP