Mexican comedy star Eugenio Derbez wants to upend cultural clichés.
He joined TheWrap’s Stuart Brazell to discuss his upcoming comedy “Overboard,” a remake of the classic 1987 romantic comedy about a spoiled millionaire who suffers amnesia after falling off a ship and is forced to live in squalor.
But while the original film starred Goldie Hawn as the billionaire, with Kurt Russell as the mistreated carpenter who takes her in after her memory loss, the new “Overboard” switches the genders. Derbez plays the arrogant member of the one percent while Anna Faris plays an overworked single mom who convinces him they are married. Derbez told TheWrap the switch was made to prevent direct comparisons with Russell and Hawn’s performances, but there was another reason.
“I wanted to break stereotypes,” the actor said. “The natural thing is that the Latino is going to play the carpenter and she’s going to be the millionaire, but no! This time the Mexican is going to be the millionaire and she’s going to be cleaning the floors.”
Derbez is a big star in Mexico, having released one of last year’s top ten highest grossing films in that country with “How to Be A Latin Lover.” So, naturally, he wants to reach out to his fans as well as fans of the original “Overboard.”
“You see ‘Rambo’ in Russia and everybody speaks English, or James Bond goes to China and everyone speaks English,” he said. “And we, thought, that’s not true, let’s keep it right. So in the scenes where my Mexican family is looking for me all over the place, we decided to make those scenes in Spanish.”
“Overboard” hits theaters this Friday. For more of Derbez’s thoughts on the film and what it’s like being a big Mexican star living in L.A., check out the video above.