Cheating death as an international drug lord, darting through crowded streets, dodging gunshots, pounding down tequila shots and cocking a pistol, all while donning a pair of turquoise stilettos. It’s all in a day’s work for “La Reina del Sur” star Kate del Castillo.
The crossover star believes audiences relate to her character’s many contradictions.
“She loves deeply, contradicts herself, yet those are the things people like about her because she’s human,” del Castillo, left, said during the question and answer panel following a screening of the pilot Tuesday night at Landmark Theater. “She smokes pot, drinks tequila, traffics with drugs, sleeps around with married men, went to jail, but people still love her.”
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Hosted in collaboration with the National Hispanic Media Coalition, the event was a part of TheWrap’s Emmy Screening Series. TheWrap's Editor-in-Chief Sharon Waxman and the National Hispanic Media Coalition’s President & CEO Alex Nogales, co-moderated the panel discussion with del Castillo and Telemundo Entertainment Senior Executive Vice President Joshua Mintz.
(Pictured left to right, Mintz, Nogales, del Castillo and Waxman)
Del Castillo said she and the show producers are careful to make sure that nightly telenovela shows the unsavory side of the drug wars and doesn’t glamorize narco-trafficking.
“This is not a life. She lives in hell. She lives in a world where everyone she has ever loved is killed,” del Castillo said.
Mintz pointed out that the rash of drug related crime in places such as Ciudad Juarez gives “La Reina del Sur” a ripped from the headlines feel.
“We can not neglect what’s happening; it depicts one of the millions of stories of drug dealing in Mexico,” Mintz said.
For the most part, the show makers say “La Reina del Sur” has been able to offer enough action and sex to make it a hit. However, sometimes things that fly with American audiences, don’t fly with the powers that be in places like Mexico.
“They did censor some things—like me kissing a girl,” del Castillo said.
Photos by Jonathan Alcorn