In true Latino fashion, Mexican-born director Guillermo Del Toro, of “Pan’s Labyrinth” and “Hellboy” fame, lit up the crowd at the Legendary Entertainment panel when he announced that he would play an exclusive “Pacific Rim” teaser created only for San Diego Comic Con.
The teaser produced just twelve weeks after the film wrapped wasn’t going to resurface until the official trailer slated for release in December 2012, but as he stated “the good news is I don’t give a f***.” The crowd went wild and when the lights turned on the director was greeted to a standing ovation.
The film slated for release in 2013 is about creatures known as Kaiju who arise from the sea and attack earth. As the war begins, giant robots piloted by two humans — whose minds and bodies are synced to the robot — are created to fight the giant Kaiju.
“The idea was to create a movie that was an adventure film. I’m really obsessed with the idea of adventure films not existing anymore,” he said. “I think that the greatest adventures and dreams that are offered to this generation is to be rich and famous. I really love the idea of creating this movie. I really wanted to avoid the sleek, blue military neon look where we are all kick-ass and super cool. I really wanted a movie where there was a spirit of romance, erosion and beauty and the rust and the drama of winning a war where we are the resistance.”
While Guillermo spoke at length about the film, he was actually on hand to reveal the Pacific Rim Graphic novel, which he stated is a must read before the film’s release. “When the proposal came for a comic we spoke and decided that we would make it a prequel that tells the other story that leads to the logic of creating a world that can grapple with a thing that is not an actual weapon,” he said. “That it’s so huge that it’s fused with a soul or a will or intelligence so it’s a weapon that can change its mind and can go anywhere and destroy anything.”
The director also signed exclusive art work created by Spanish artist and longtime collaborator Raúl Monge.
“Raúl is one of my top concept designers. The idea with this particular piece was to emulate an old WWII propaganda poster/flyer that went along with the world we were creating. It symbolizes rationing – voluntary work force, no guts, no glory kind of heroism.”
Never one to leave his Latin roots behind Del Toro created a Latino character for Pacific Rim. “Well with Pacific Rim there is a character that is Peruvian Chinese Tendo Choi and it’s played by Clifton Collins Jr. who’s a Hispanic actor who’s very, very good. Part of the mythology in the comic and in the film is attacking Vera Cruz and Peru so we deal with that somewhat in this manner.”
Although he hasn’t directed a Spanish film since Cronos it’s important for him to keep those ties. “I think it comes with me and the people I collaborate with. I try to continue, certainly producing films in Latin America/Mexico, except for Cronos, I haven’t directed a film in Latin America for a while. But I think that you can stay active producing, writing and doing stuff for other film makers that are starting that’s the most important part.”
Even more important for him is for young Latinos to continue creating and not give up.
“While it’s very hard to advance in this kind of medium it’s important that they understand the need, love and importance of our presence. We too love this medium and they love us for creating beautiful art and for being a part of it, he said.
“We must continue to work in it for future generations and create an even bigger platform for the generations to come after that.”
Eneida I. DelValle has worked in all areas of media from radio, television and print, traveling across the United States and Puerto Rico covering both the Latino and non-Latino communities. She previously worked at PBS owned Spanish Language station V-me and Peacock Productions a division of NBC News. A self-professed news junkie, book-worm, art and music lover, you can frequently find her at a rock or salsa concert and photographing the streets of New York.