Following his tribute at the Inauguration of the Guanajuato International Film Festival, our renowned premier actor Eric Del Castillo (looking much younger than the 80 years his age claims he’s lived) gave a Master Conference at Bellas Artes yesterday at 1:00 pm. His full name is José Eduardo Eric del Castillo-Negrete Galván and as a fun fact, he told us that “Eric” is a name his father gave him after the legendary German actor and director Erich von Stroheim (some may remember him as Norma Desmond’s butler in Sunset Boulevard). His father never saw him act, since he died on November 28, 1948, along with 12 other firemen trying to put out the famous fire at La Sirena (Eric was 14 years old when this happened).
Eric describes himself as restless and because of all the trouble he caused as a youth (running away from home and boarding schools), when he was 20 years old his mothersuggested that his energy would be of better use if he went into acting. Eric had to visit Don Andrés Soler’s academy and see the photographs of María Félix and Pedro Armendáriz among others to be convinced that this was, as he insists it’s always been to this day, his calling. What he was born to do and he feels fortunate to have found it at such a young age, since many never find it.
“When you’re in acting, you must always begin in theater” claims our honoree, because in theater there is a truth one doesn’t find in cinema or television (where Truth can be manipulated) and because every actor must have the experience of facing an audience. He still insists that he loves movies and he loves televisión. He feels at home anywhere when he’s acting.
Eventually hunger led him to want to try directing. “If you don’t have work, make you own work” he always says (which is why he has started theater companies and other cooperative measures). He loves directing, but he couldn’t really succeed it because someone was always hiring him to act. He never learned English because every time he started lessons, he had to go shoot a film in Durango (which is why he had his daughters study at a young age).
More than anything, Eric Del Castillo claims that everything he will ever tell us will be the Truth. Our honoree insists he will always be sincere.
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