IN CONVERSATION WITH ALEJANDRO SPEITZER
Born in México, Alejandro Speitzer started off his career at a tender age of 5 with a prolific career all the way to his late teens, starring in top rated shows and telenovelas making him a household name in his home country, setting a trailblazing path in his career to come. In 2020 he took on a leading role in Netflix hit series ‘Dark Desire’, which just recently premiered its second and final season.
In the beginning of February fans finally saw the return of ‘Dark Desire’ with its second and final season on Netflix. What was your reaction to the script for the second season when you first read it?
The first reading was interesting. I remember the exact same thing happened to me on the first season, I couldn’t stop reading and I felt like one more viewer hooked to the story. That was already a good start.
Luckily for me, I was also discovering that the second season narrated Darío’s past, which gave me the opportunity to put certain situations on the table, that explained the reasons for Darío’s personality and where that sociopathy came from. It was just what I needed as an actor.
To fans, the ending to the series was kind of an unexpected twist for your character, Darío. How much of preparation had to be put into playing such a dark character?
I have to say it was not an easy character to create. For this role I worked with my personal psychologist and he sent me many readings on sociopathy in order for me to understand Darío’s disorder so I could make a character attached to reality.
I also had to work a lot with my eyes, had to manage to do a perfect blank stare with the intention of always making the viewers doubt and to be indecipherable. Sometimes the blank stare is how you can uncover a person with a personality like Dario’s.
‘Dark Desire’ was full of sexual scenes throughout both of the seasons. Was filming these scenes something that made you feel very uncomfortable?
Incredibly, I am a very modest person. Doing sex scenes is never easy, you have to take care of your partner, follow a choreography and wear very few clothes. It’s not easy at all. But I was very lucky to have a great partner whom I could speak freely to before doing an explicit scene. Doing so, we felt each other and took care of one another.
You started your acting career at a very young age, when you were only 5. Since then you starred in top rated TV shows and telenovelas in your home country and then later in American productions geared towards a Latin audience and of course international audience. How do you look back on the development of your career?
I look back and understand that my life in general and my career would be different if I hadn’t started so young. Growing up between work sets made me understand early on the responsibility one has to have when telling a story. My growth has been very progressive, in this way I have been able to calmly assimilate each new step I take. Of course, many things have changed since I started, but it’s true that to this day I still feel the same nervousness that I felt when I was a child, and I think this is a good sign. Everything that generates our nerves, makes us feel alive and to face a character you must feel alive and be present.
In 2017 you made your silver screen debut as an executive producer of Mexican hit comedy ‘Me gusta, pero me asusta’. Is producing something that you want to pursue more of in your future? What is it about producing that excites you?
Producing allows you to live the creative process, it’s also very enriching and something I want to continue doing. As someone once told me: after producing your first film, you are already thinking about the next one. I have to confess that sometimes I am obsessive with my work and like to pay attention to details. That is something that I think a producer must have, knowing how to take care of details.
I want to direct, I’m working on a couple of scripts. I hope to be shooting my first movie as a director in a not-so-distant future.
What is the most special and satisfying thing about acting for you?
It is clear that one of the biggest problems of human beings is that we don’t know how to be present. Acting forces you to feel alive, to explore your vulnerabilities and to be present.
What inspires you the most in life?
Love inspires me. Knowing there is a feeling capable of freeing us from ourselves to care for others, seems to me one of the greatest hopes of humanity.
When you’re not working, how do you prefer to spend your free time?
I enjoy quality time with friends and family. It’s important for me to get away from work and its surroundings in my free time, for me to remember there’s a world outside my job.
I am also passionate about cinema, so I try to go every time I can.
Italian brand Bvlgari named you their brand ambassador for the second year in a row. What do you like the most about working on projects with fashion brands?
Being the first Bvlgari ambassador in Mexico has allowed me to explore new horizons and to discover that fashion is also a form of expression.
Also, I have met very interesting people in this new world for me. I am willing to continue to grow in the world of fashion.
Soon, we’ll be seeing you in Amazon Western TV series ‘La Cabeza de Juan Murrieta’. Tell us more about the series and your character Joaquin Carillo.
‘The Head of Joaquín Murrieta’ is without a doubt the greatest challenge I have faced as a performer. In this story, we had the opportunity to capture the racism and xenophobia that Mexicans experienced in 1852 during the gold rush in California. As incredible as it may seem, racism and xenophobia continue to exist today. My character, Joaquín Carrillo is a peasant who is forced to leave his land and experiences dispossession by the Americans in a world where life was worth very little. It was interesting to explore that feeling of vulnerability, of knowing that at any moment one’s life could end, that it was in someone else’s hands and not your own.
Shooting in the middle of the desert was also a very interesting and personal experience. I was able to reconnect with nature. For me that is the essence of life.
Besides ‘La Cabeza de Juan Murrieta’ what’s next in store for you?
My next project will be for HBO Max and Warner. I still can’t say much about it, but I am confident it will make a difference in the Spanish-speaking industry. It is an ambitious project that has been a very interesting personal challenge because I’m exploring a world that I didn’t know as a performer.
Interview by JANA LETONJA
Talent: Alejandro Speitzer
Photographer: Javier Castán
Fashion editor: Victor Blanco
Hair & Make-up: Sergio Antón
Set design: Mara Chiappara
Casting: Timi Letonja
Video: Xabi Goitisolo
Production: The Royal Production Company, Pablo Gutiérrez, Laura González & Irene Santana
Photo assistant: Rodrigo Quirante
Fashion assistant: Jesús Ramirez
Dancer: Miguel Arévalo