There are actresses who do not need a great leading role to be recognized by the public and by their peers. Ana Celentano is one of them. It is enough to remember Clara, the cousin of Ricardo Riganti (Rodrigo de la Serna) in Occupy, the cult unit that this year had a deserved rebirth in Netflix.
Or that Teresa, the protective wife of Pablo Echarri in Thursday’s widows, the film based on the novel by Claudia Piñeiro and directed by Marcelo Piñeyro. The same creative duo of The kingdom, the Argentine series of the year where Celentano can be seen in a minor role.
Ana answers her cell phone from a golf course in a gated community during a break from filming María Marta, the crime of the country, the fiction about the María Marta García Belsunce case that HBO plans to release in 2022.
Celentano will be Irene Hurtig in the HBO series on the case of María Marta García Belsunce.
“We have been filming since June and we finished this month. Very enthusiastic, I play Irene Hurtig, a cute character. It is a fiction, but it is based on reality, ”says the 52-year-old actress who immersed herself in the world streaming.
-Have you made characters based on real people?
-I played the mother of Felicitas Guerrero. I played Salvadora Medina Onrubia in the film The mural, I played Eva Perón in a play … All historical characters who are no longer alive. And then I had to make a documentary with fictional parts called No me mates, on the case of Corina Fernández, a woman who survived an assassination attempt on her ex-husband. She came to the filming. His presence was very strong and moving.
The Kingdom and the debates it generated
The talk will focus on The kingdom and in Occupy, the two Argentine series that made the most noise in 2021 that had almost no local production strips on air television. They will also talk about how the pandemic transited, how the irruption of streaming broadens the panorama; and the benefits of the office in the age of maturity.
In El Reino, he played the mother of Julio Clamens, the character of Chino Darín.
-Although you have a small role in “El Reino”, tell me about the experience of working for a super production that made so much noise.
-I love the series, it is spectacular. It has an impeccable technical invoice: performances, cast. It is a super valuable material that shows that we can produce excellent series and films with international quality. We already knew it, but it is always good to validate it, especially with the public. The most important thing is that people saw it, discussed it. There is a lot of word of mouth.
-Did you expect so many repercussions?
-Yes. I think it is not so common that there are fictions that talk about the Evangelical Churches or religion. Perhaps it is customary to see certain stigmatizations that are naturalized, such as movies where Muslims are terrorists. A dividing line must be drawn between fiction and the possibility of thinking, creating and writing audiovisual projects with great freedom, without cancellation or censorship.
-Do you think there were excessive reactions or criticism?
-Yes. There was an overreaction to something that is clearly fiction. It is essential to defend the freedom to count without ties or censorship. Later, I think they played things that have to do with feminist activism and in favor of the legal and free abortion that Claudia (Piñeiro) has. AND they charge that, obviously.
And he adds: “We are talking about people who have a certain position on feminism, on policies with a gender perspective. So there is a kind of cruelty that must be repudiated.”
-Do you think that, as many said, they focused more on the religious than on the political?
-All Lfictions awaken and promote debates. That is what it is about, widening the gaze and seeing what happens to the other. This is a very political series. The focus is on the evangelistic question and that wonderful character that Joaquín Furriel plays is neglected. Because there are people in certain places, very prepared, very capable, pulling the strings of politics.
For Celentano, Furriel “is the most sinister character of all. And that did not enter much debate.”
The new television and the Okupas phenomenon
-You made strips and units with Argentine production companies on air channels. Now that you have also worked with streaming platforms, what differences are there at the production level and what changes for the actor?
-Look, that’s what I feel, that I am one more gear of all the machinery that is put into operation, but I feel that there is not the pressure or the urgency that air television has.
In Okupas it was Carla, the cousin of Rodrigo de la Serna’s character who lent him the house.
-The rating pressure, you say?
-Of course, the rating … and certain things that one feels are hanging by a thread. On the other hand, here, in general, they are projects with a lot of previous work: when I have to start filming, there is already a settlement. And in those who have touched me, the directors and scriptwriters work with a lot of “freedom”. I say in quotes because platforms also go down the line, they require certain fees.
-Different from those on air TV?
-They are different fees. For instance, The kingdom It is taking place in a lot of countries, so there are things of the idiosyncrasy that are more limited. Yes, there is a feeling that it is more like the cinema, that when you get to record it will not eat the air. Both in The kingdom like in Country crime, there is more time to think the scene. The truth is that you appreciate a little more time.
– Quite the opposite of how “Okupas” was filmed, where everyone says that the air ate them.
-(Laughs) Yes, but in that madness in which we filmed Occupy we had an incredible level of freedom to work. From language, aesthetics, everything. And, well, today we are experiencing this phenomenon of being seen on Netflix, with excellent quality, and it ends up being a boom. A recognition is felt to a series that has an aesthetic validity and impressive content.
Celentano maintains that “Okupas” aged like a good wine.
-How do you think he aged?
-I believe that like a great wine. I enjoyed it more now than when I saw it at the time, which was very aware of my own, of my character. Now I saw it more as a series, and I am really very grateful to have been there. I think it’s very disruptive (it premiered in 2000 on Channel 7). It’s something that really marked a before and after in fiction.
Its role as a secondary school, the pandemic and the future
-Reviewing your career on TV and in cinema, almost all of your best-known roles are secondary. Does it bother you or bother you at any time?
-It does not bother me at all. They are decisions that one was making regarding the place where you think and do your work. I had to star in a movie; I always played supporting roles on television. But for me it is a party to be working. And women, especially, we go to an age in which it is already, you only act as “mother of”, “grandmother of”.
On that point he understands that “it is a subject to debate, because it’s like women’s lives don’t have a leading role after forty-something. And there is much less work. As if life ended there. “
In 2016 she starred in the film “Don’t kill me”, based on the first precedent of femicide in Argentina.
-How have you been going through the pandemic, taking into account that the audiovisual sector is one of the most affected?
– It was and is still quite difficult. It is a sector of the hardest hit, along with everything that is the informal economy, ordinary workers who are precarious. To me I had to live it as a director of the social work of actors. It was a tremendous drama because we were already in very bad shape after many years of sick leave, which caused the play to go out of funding.
“And having to face a pandemic under those conditions was very tough. I suffered it more from the collective. Now with the vaccination it is beginning to be able to work and it is a respite “, he acknowledges.
-How did you manage to stay afloat?
-I was lucky enough to be able to do some things, direct an online microseries with my partner, based on an Enacom award that we won in 2019. We adapted it and filmed it remotely. Is named Traction to blood (available on the web sangrre.com.ar.) Emotionally, that helped us. The actors are used to the uncertainty of not knowing when we are going to work, but this was fatal.
-Do you think that the expansion of streaming, added to local production, means more opportunities for actors? Or that a more atomized market is coming, but with the same faces?
-I think there are possibilities that they are more tools for national production. But they must be accompanied by concrete policies: to seat all the players to see that everyone’s rights are fulfilled, that the cake is better distributed so that there is more diversity and more production. Because the conditions are right, and because we have enormous talents to produce audiovisuals.